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Tuesday's Projection: VCU receives final at-large bid ... for now

2011 NCAA Tournament Projection
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Notable developments: I moved VCU, despite its loss, ahead of Colorado for the final at-large. I don't think VCU's profile can hold up to a week's worth of high-major teams tacking on wins, however.

Last four out: Colorado, Saint Mary's, Clemson, Memphis.

New at-large teams in: VCU (as final team in).

At-large teams out: Colorado (as final team out).

Bids by conference: Big East (11); Big Ten and SEC (6); ACC and Big 12 (5); Atlantic 10, Colonial, Mountain West and Pac-10 (3); Horizon (2).

BRACKET KEY

League winners (automatic qualifiers) are listed with their conference for clarity.

In this bracket, the East matches up with the West, the Southeast with the Southwest in the national semifinals.

* Team officially won its league's automatic bid.

 
 
EAST - Newark, N.J.
 
Cleveland
 
1Ohio State (Big Ten)
16Boston U. (America East)
 
 
8Old Dominion* (Colonial)
9Utah State (WAC)
 
 
Denver
 
5Xavier (Atlantic 10)
12Oakland (Summit)
 
 
4St. John's
13Belmont* (Atlantic Sun)
 
 
Washington, D.C.
 
6Kansas State
11Michigan
 
 
3Syracuse
14UW-Milwaukee (Horizon)
 
 
Charlotte
 
7Arizona (Pac-10)
10Georgia
 
 
2North Carolina (ACC)
15Long Island (Northeast)
 
SOUTHEAST - New Orleans
 
Cleveland
 
1Pittsburgh (Big East)
16McNeese St. (Southland)/Texas So. (SWAC)
 
 
8UCLA
9Florida State
 
 
Tampa
 
5Wisconsin
12Gonzaga* (West Coast)
 
 
4Louisville
13Harvard (Ivy)
 
 
Tampa
 
6Georgetown
11Boston College/Alabama
 
 
3Florida (SEC)
14Kent State (MAC)
 
 
Tulsa
 
7UNLV
10Richmond
 
 
2Texas
15No. Colorado (Big Sky)
 
 
 
 
 
WEST - Anaheim
 
Chicago
 
1Notre Dame
16Beth.-Cook. (MEAC)/North Texas (Sun Belt)
 
 
8Missouri
9George Mason
 
 
Washington, D.C.
 
5Connecticut
12UAB (C-USA)
 
 
4Kentucky
13Bucknell (Patriot)
 
 
Chicago
 
6Cincinnati
11Butler
 
 
3Purdue
14Wofford* (Southern)
 
 
Denver
 
7Texas A&M
10Marquette
 
 
2BYU (Mountain West)
15Long Beach State (Big West)
 
SOUTHWEST - San Antonio
 
Tulsa
 
1Kansas (Big 12)
16UNC Asheville* (Big South)
 
 
8Temple
9Illinois
 
 
Tucson
 
5Vanderbilt
12Virginia Tech/VCU
 
 
4West Virginia
13Indiana State* (MVC)
 
 
Tucson
 
6Tennessee
11Michigan State
 
 
3San Diego State
14Morehead State* (Ohio Valley)
 
 
Charlotte
 
7Villanova
10Washington
 
 
2Duke
15Saint Peter's* (MAAC)
 
 

GENERAL NOTES

With the addition of three at-large spots (increasing the field to 68 teams), there are now four play-in games, dubbed the "First Four." Two games will match the tournament's lowest seeds, Nos. 65 through 68, with the winners claiming a No. 16 seed. The other two games will feature the last four teams of the 37 at-large qualifiers, with the winners likely receiving No. 11 or 12 seeds.

The top-four seeds in each region, starting with the No. 1 seeds, receive geographic preference when possible. An imbalance in high seeds between regions (e.g. if more than two top-four seeds are closest to the same subregional location) may force a protected seed into a secondary location.

Projected auto-bid winners in traditional one-bid leagues are determined by the best RPI from the team(s) with the fewest league losses. Teams can be moved a seed line up or down to conform to bracketing rules.

For more in-depth analysis, check out the Bubble Watch.

Got a bone to pick with the Bracket Watch? Send feedback to bubblewatch@gmail.com.
 
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