Here's the 1-seed situation in a nutshell. The locks, according to the consensus, are Florida and Arizona. Our Dance Chance agrees. Then, there is a near-consensus that Wichita State will get a 1-seed if they win the MVC tournament. The last 1-seed goes to either Kansas, or—with Syracuse's continued fall—perhaps Villanova. We have the Jayhawks a solid 1-seed, but our final top seed goes to the Virginia Cavaliers, who edge Wichita State by a hair.
The holdouts in the Wichita State top-seed consensus are almost all algorithm-driven seeding systems like the Dance Chance. One of those, TeamRankings.com, realized that having the Shockers a 3 or 4 seed wasn't reflecting reality, so they altered their algorithm to put the Shockers on the 1-line (we guess there would be many holdouts if not for the fact that the Shockers went to the Final Four last year). Our Dance Chance has had Wichita State a solid 2-seed for weeks and now they come the closest they have yet, reaching the top 2-seed.
Few have mentioned the Cavaliers as worthy of a top seed, but if they win the ACC tournament and Kansas and/or Wichita State stumble, it could become a reality. They're already there in the Dance Chance, but time will tell if they hold onto it.
Take it from the top: Florida the #1 overall seed
For the first time, Florida takes over as our #1 overall seed from Arizona, buoyed by a 17-0 conference record; if they beat Kentucky, they'll have swept the SEC. Arizona is #1 in RPI and in Strength and is a solid 1-seed, while Kansas with its all-time-best 20.0 Wins Composite score is also a solid 1-seed.
Syracuse's loss to Georgia Tech tumbled the Orange to the lowest 2-seed, and Virginia—16-1 in the ACC—moved into the final 1-seed slot, closely followed by undefeated Wichita State. The ACC tournament will be a great one to watch this year. We have Duke as the strongest team, but Virginia and North Carolina are both on incredible winning streaks.
Though we seed Wisconsin higher, Michigan won the Big Ten outright last night by beating Illinois, and also became a 100% lock for the tournament, inching up to the top 3-seed.
In the lower 3-seeds, not much changed despite some big losses. Iowa State fell to Baylor and Creighton lost to Georgetown but neither dropped as both still have very solid résumés. The Cyclones have many big wins to fall back on and Creighton is in the top ten in RPI and Strength.
|11||3||Iowa St.||Big 12||22-7||10-7||12||16||10.0||99.9|
|14||4||Michigan St.||Big Ten||22-7||11-5||23||15||7.5||97.2|
|15||4||San Diego St.||Mtn West||23-3||14-2||22||24||4.5||94.8|
The 4-seeds remained the same, too, with North Carolina on top after getting their 12th straight win on Monday. Kentucky's win over Alabama bumped them up a seed to the high-5, knocking St. Louis (see below) from the bottom 5 to the top 6-seed.
|21||6||Saint Louis||Atlantic 10||24-4||12-2||17||43||5.5||91.4||-1|
|23||6||New Mexico||Mtn West||23-5||14-2||14||42||2.0||89.1|
|25||7||Ohio St.||Big Ten||22-8||9-8||27||12||2.5||83.2||-1|
|32||8||Kansas St.||Big 12||20-10||10-7||36||44||8.5||76.3|
Neither team played, but UConn and Ohio State switch places after being almost tied two days ago; this time, the Huskies are ahead and take the last 6-seed. UMass didn't play either but they benefit from Oregon's win over Arizona State, which dropped the Wildcats to an 8-seed. The Ducks and Sun Devils are neck-and-neck now, with Oregon's tiny edge in overall record, RPI, and Strength outweighing ASU's 1-game lead in conference standings.
Above the bubble: Oklahoma State and Baylor helped themselves out by winning Big 12 games over Kansas State and Iowa State respectively.
|34||9||Oklahoma St.||Big 12||20-10||8-9||43||10||5.0||72.0||+1|
|38||10||Saint Joseph's||Atlantic 10||21-7||11-3||34||68||4.0||66.9|
|40||10||George Washington||Atlantic 10||21-7||9-5||33||52||4.0||66.0|
The Wildcats held onto the final 7-seed while the Cowboys and Bears take 9- and 10-seeds. The Pac-12 suffered for this as Colorado and Stanford dropped from the low 9- and 10- to the high 10- and 11-seeds. Pittsburgh fell for a reason, losing to N.C. State and almost dropping 2 seed levels. Their RPI is not looking so hot.
Top of the bubble: Florida State replaces Xavier
Florida State's Dance Chance was 49.9% two days ago, but last night they beat Boston College and that win has them in—for now. Meanwhile, Xavier was an 11-seed play-in team on Monday but lost to mediocre Seton Hall. Now the Musketeers are the 2nd team out behind Southern Miss.
Ivy League-leader Harvard is in a familiar spot. Almost good enough to quality for an at-large bid, but if they somehow fail to get Ivy auto-bid, those losses would take them out of at-large contention. They can clinch on Friday.
It seems reasonable that there has to be a third bid for the Big East, so Xavier is in good position, but Providence isn't that far behind them. The Friars are tied in-conference, have a slight edge in record, and aren't as win-deficient as Xavier. Still, they are at the bottom of our "first four out."
The lower bubble: More Big Ten, Big East
|60||St. John's||Big East||19-11||9-8||63||41||-2.0||37.4|
|63||13||Stephen F. Austin||Southland||23-2||16-0||71||95||-1.5||33.4|
Last time we checked, we had Nebraska ahead of Minnesota in the Dance Chance. Now the Gophers are back in front by a nose. All it took is a recalculation of the RPI, where the 'Huskers dropped a few positions. Minnesota ends the season vs. Penn State so they have the easier route, but you could say that Nebraska controls their destiny for the tournament with games vs. Indiana and Wisconsin; an 8-10 Big Ten record could be ignored, but not an 11-7 one.
Georgetown's upset of Creighton put the Hoyas back on the bubble but they might have a ways to go yet; we still have them 6th in the Big East, behind even St. John's.
Stephen F. Austin should win the Southland, and despite a 2-loss season they'll probably have to. Their RPI isn't horrible but it's well below water, and they haven't really beaten anyone. As an at-large they would rank behind the "third four out."