It’s March! It’s March! My favorite month of the year. Hope springs eternal for college basketball fans from across the country as every team has a shot via their conference tournament and the NCAA tournament to become national champions by winning on the court, not via computers or pollsters. It literally doesn’t get any better than this.
The major conference tournaments tip-off on Tuesday (Big East), Wednesday (Pac 10 and Big 12), and Thursday (Big 10, ACC, and SEC). While the other conference tournaments are already underway with final coming early this week.
A few teams have already punched their tickets to the dance. Congrats to Belmont (Atlantic Sun), UNC Ashville (Big South), and Morehead State (Ohio Valley).
As a reminder, the top teams are gunning for protected seeds in the these four regionals: Newark (East), New Orleans (Southeast), San Antonio (Southwest), and Anaheim (West). Anaheim and New Orleans are Thursday / Saturday regionals; Newark and San Antonio are Friday / Sunday regionals
The second and third round (the NCAA is now considering the play-in games round one) in eight spots across the country. Thursday / Saturday host sites include Washington DC, Tampa, Denver, and Tucson. Friday / Sunday host sites include Charlotte, Cleveland, Chicago, and Tulsa.
Here are my ‘educated’ guesses at the top 16 teams in the NCAA tournament. These are listed (1) as if the season ended today and (2) by strength within each seed. I honestly don’t think that Notre Dame will end up with a No. 1 seed unless they (a) win the Big East tournament or (b) reach the Big East finals and no one on the two line wins their respective conference tournament.
No. 1 Seeds: Ohio State, Kansas, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame
No. 2 Seeds: Duke, Texas, BYU, North Carolina
No. 3 Seeds: Purdue, San Diego State, Wisconsin, Syracuse
No. 4 Seeds: Louisville, Florida, Georgetown, Kentucky
Next Four: St. John’s, Arizona, Connecticut, West Virginia
Big 12 Bids (6)
Lock: Kansas, Texas, Texas A&M, Kansas State
Highly Likely: Missouri
On the Bubble: Colorado, Baylor
Bubble Burst: Nebraska