Big East tops latest Bracket Watch with eight bids
|2010 NCAA Tournament Projection|
|Selection Sunday is not until March 14, but it's never too early to see what the 2010 NCAA Tournament field looks like as of right now. Note: 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. Thus, in the coming weeks, shifts in seeding will alter which subregions fall into which regions. |
In this bracket, the Midwest matches up with the West, the South with the East in the national semifinals.
New multi-bid conference teams in: Louisville, Cincinnati, Marquette, Mississippi State.
Multi-bid conference teams out: George Mason (auto bid), UAB, Mississippi, Saint Mary's.
Also considered: William & Mary, Mississippi, Saint Mary's, San Diego State, UAB.
Bids by conference: Big East (8), ACC and Big 12 (7); Atlantic 10 (6); Big Ten and SEC (5); Mountain West (3). Auto bids in smaller conferences were determined by best RPI among all first-place (e.g. fewest losses) teams in the league. One-bid league winners and select other auto-bid teams are listed with their conference for clarity. Teams can be moved a seed line up or down to conform to bracketing rules.
-- All three borderline Big East teams jumped into the bracket despite either modest wins or, in Louisville's case, a terrible performance at St. John's before the upset at Syracuse.
-- All six A-10 teams stayed in the bracket, despite Charlotte losing its only game by 28, Rhode Island losing twice and Dayton losing at Saint Louis.
Why they made it:
-- Louisville: Upset of Syracuse validates some earlier tough losses to high-level foes and provides a ceiling that's higher than other bubblers. Numbers overall remain hard to look at.
-- Rhode Island: At this point, win at Dayton is saving the Rams, who remained in the bracket mainly because other teams below them also lost.
-- Dayton: Crushing Charlotte was more of a plus than losing in OT at Saint Louis was a minus. Like URI, also benefits from losses behind it.
-- Cincinnati: Got above .500 in the Big East; overall work, with nonleague wins over Vandy and Maryland, remains nominally better than the teams behind it.
Why they didn't make it:
-- William & Mary: Two 200+ RPI losses and fourth place in a conference ranked outside the top 10 overcame three terrific nonleague wins. On balance, maybe still should have been in.
-- Mississippi: Win over K-State can't mask weakness of profile; was passed by Miss. State, which owns season sweep of Rebels.
-- Saint Mary's: Win at Utah State and beating San Diego State isn't enough to overcome softness of overall profile and back-to-back WCC losses on the road. Stays in bracket had SMC beaten Portland.
Note: There were seven teams from outside the BCS conferences. All of them were from the A-10 and Mountain West. Got a bone to pick with the Bracket Watch? Send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.