The Bracket: Regularly Updated

     This will be the page where I will be updating the bracket constantly over the next few days right up until the Selection Show.  Every time a decent number of results come in, I’ll update the bracket (probably around twice daily).  The most recent bracket will be at the top, and older ones will be at the bottom in case you want to see how everything’s moved around.

3/13: 11:30pm update

     It’s starting to become clearer.  Thank god.  Even though the SEC continued rejecting everything we thought we knew about college basketball with Auburn beating LSU, I can safely put a few more teams in the field.  I now can say with relative certainty that Purdue and Temple will make the field.  Both teams won and advanced into the semifinals of their respective conferences, and while an additional win would put the icing on the cake, they shouldn’t have a ton to worry about.  Additionally, Richmond fell to VCU, effectively ending the Spiders’ chances.  They already had two victories against VCU, but a third was needed to put them in the field.  UCLA had a strong performance in its loss to Arizona, so I don’t think they’re done just yet.  The Bruins will have a chance of hearing their names called on Sunday.
     If I’m being perfectly honest, the far more interesting games today were played by top seeds.  Both ACC one seeds (Duke and Virginia) stumbled in their tournaments to Notre Dame and North Carolina, setting up an unexpected final matchup.  Villanova just barely squeaked by Providence in a great matchup.  The fight for a 1 seed is now intense, as Duke, Virginia, Arizona, and Wisconsin will all feel worthy of being on the top line.  My 1s right now would be Kentucky, Villanova, Arizona, Duke, although that is definitely subject to change.  Wisconsin would take the last spot if they won the Big Ten tournament.
     Lastly, the bid thieves.  Wyoming is now only one game away from stealing a spot from the bubble after beating Boise State, who now becomes a bubble team (but almost certainly in the field).  Here’s how the bubble looks tonight.  The current plan is to wait and release a final full bracket on Sunday before the selection show, and just to regularly update the bubble either here or on Twitter.

Last Four Byes: Oklahoma St, Temple, BYU, Purdue
Last Four In: LSU, Ole Miss, Texas, Miami (Fl)
First Four Out: Tulsa, UCLA, Indiana, Murray St
Next Four Out: Rhode Island, Texas A&M, Old Dominion, Buffalo

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3/13: 12:30am update

What to do, what to do.  It looks like no one is capable of winning a basketball game when they need to.  Oklahoma St lost, and Ole Miss lost.  This also probably moves LSU to being a lock, just because everyone around them is falling.  Oklahoma St is probably okay, but who knows with Ole Miss, since they’ve lost four of five.  Stanford is out with their loss against Utah, and Colorado St. is definitely in with a win.  Truthfully, they were a lock a couple weeks back, but with the committee you never know.  At this point, there’s no way more than a couple teams could pass them, let alone the ten or so that would be needed to take them out at this point.  A full bracket will come tomorrow, but I should probably sleep, so for now just a bubble update will do.  I’m eager to see Lunardi’s update tomorrow to see if we’re thinking along the same lines.  We start after Colorado St.

Last Four Byes: LSU, Oklahoma St, Temple, BYU
Last Four In: Purdue, Ole Miss, Texas, UCLA
First Four Out: Indiana, Miami (Fl), Tulsa, Murray St
Next Four Out: Rhode Island, Richmond, Texas A&M, Old Dominion (had to put someone here)

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3/12: 9:45pm central time update

1s: Kentucky, Duke, Virginia, Villanova
2s: Arizona, Wisconsin, Gonzaga, Kansas
3s: MarylandNotre Dame, Northern Iowa, Baylor
4s: Oklahoma, Louisville, Iowa St, Wichita St
5s: Utah, SMU, North Carolina, Butler
6s: West Virginia, Arkansas, Providence, Georgetown
7s: Ohio St, Michigan St, VCU, Iowa
8s: San Diego St, Dayton, St. John’s, Georgia
9s: Xavier, Oregon, Cincinnati, NC State
10s: Davidson, Colorado St, Oklahoma St, Ole Miss
11s: Boise St, LSU Temple, BYU, Purdue
12s: Texas, UCLA,  Stephen F. Austin, Louisiana Tech, Wofford
13s: Valparaiso, Harvard, Central Michigan, UC Davis
14s: Georgia St, Northeastern, North Dakota St, NC Central
15s: Belmont, New Mexico St, Albany, Coastal Carolina
16s: North Florida, Lafayette, Montana, Manhattan, Robert Morris, Texas Southern

On the Outside Looking In:
First Four Out: Miami (Fl), Indiana, Tulsa, Murray St
Next Four Out: Rhode Island, Richmond, Texas A&M, Stanford

Eliminated: Old Dominion, Illinois, Vanderbilt

Bubble Notes:
-Purdue somehow managed to get lucky by Iowa falling to Penn State, so Purdue’s chances go dramatically up since Purdue only has to beat the Nittany Lions in order to move into the Big Ten semis.  That very well could be enough, although Penn State really wouldn’t be a quality win.  The teams around them are dropping like flies, though.
-Texas, oh Texas.  They had a great chance to lock up a bid by beating Iowa State, but that’d be too easy.  Instead, they surrender a 12-0 run down the stretch and it’s a 50/50 if they get in at this point.
-Iona.  Could they be an at-large?  I guess it’s technically possible, but in my mind they’re still behind the first four out, next four out, ODU, and Illinois at least, so I’m not putting them up there.  Here’s why: zero top 100 RPI wins, 5 sub-150 RPI losses.
-Hopefully we can lock up Colorado St, Oklahoma St, and Ole Miss, but they’d all need a win.
-Yes, I tweeted that Texas A&M is out, but on second thought, they still have a glimmer of hope.  They were actually in my field at the start of the day, and I don’t think they’re any worse than someone like Stanford.  They’re still better than the teams I eliminated in my opinion.  But yeah, Auburn is just about as bad of a loss as possible at this point.
-Anyone else have a shot with a run to their conference finals?  Not really.  Pitt, Bama might’ve stood a chance, but they both lost opening round.  And I think Green Bay, Yale, Buffalo, UConn, UTEP don’t have much of a shot as an at-large.  But there’s always the possibility of a bid thief!  There’s still a few lurking…

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