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Posts Tagged ‘NCAA Basketball’

Quick Takes: Searching for No. 1 seeds

January 17, 2018 Leave a comment

Dave2015That search for No. 1 seeds?  It’s far from over.  Oklahoma lost at Kansas State on Tuesday, meaning both the Sooners and West Virginia (on Monday) have lost this week – and it’s Wednesday morning.  Ultimately, our search may take a while.  In addition to depth and balance, particularly in the ACC and Big 12, we appear to lack – at least to this point – a handful of truly elite teams, teams you expect to win every night regardless of the opponent or where they play.  Instead, we have collective group of very good teams – fun for game action, but a little cloudy around the edges.

As of this morning, here’s a quick look at a handful of teams in relation to “wins against the field” – i.e. wins against teams currently projected to be at-large teams (based on Monday’s bracket) … Read more…

Michigan, Kansas move up the s-curve

December 24, 2012 Leave a comment

dave1It’s the Christmas Eve edition of our Power 24.  Which in this case means merry times for Michigan and Kansas.  The Wolverines and Jayhawks have climbed to spots No. 3 and No. 4 on the s-curve; No. 1 seeds if we were updating the bracket.  For those keeping track, KU was No. 4 in our preseason rankings.  Regular weekly bracket projections begin in two weeks.  Here’s to a great two weeks of Holiday hoops.

December 24 – Power 24

Duke remains No. 1 overall, and the Blue Devils continue to boast the nation’s best overall resume.  If this were Selection Sunday, there’s little doubt Duke would be the top overall seed with a spot atop the East Regional.  Louisville comes in at No. 2.  The Cardinals’ lone loss was to Duke at the Battle for Atlantis – the game in which center Gorgui Dieng injured his wrist.  In his absence, U of L has kept winning, and the Cards will be primed to meet rival Kentucky later in the week.

Arizona and Missouri continue to climb as well.  Both are firm two-seeds right now – holding spots No. 6 (Arizona) and No. 7 (Missouri) on the seeding curve.  Indiana is fifth after the loss to Butler and Syracuse is No. 8 after falling to Temple in New York.  As always, conference play will play a big role from here on out.  Most BCS conferences begin league play around New Year’s Day.

No new teams this week.  Miami-FL would have slid into the No. 25 spot had they beaten Arizona late Sunday in Hawaii.  The Hurricanes were largely overmatched, however, and currently sit at No. 27 on the curve.  A full s-curve will be released with our regular brackets this year.  A preview of that – including the Top 96 s-curve teams – will be released New Year’s Day.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Inside the Bracket: Post-marathon resume Builders and Blunders…

November 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Welcome to Bracketville

With the 24-hour ESPN College Basketball Tip-Off Marathon complete,  here are a few post-marathon resume notes from the season’s opening 10 days …

RESUME BUILDERS:  Akron, Cleveland State and Kent State all compiled impressive road wins.  It’s been a while since the Mid-American Conference put two teams in the NCAA Tournament, so the fact that Akron and Kent State both have strong out-of-conference wins this early is significant.  Akron won at Mississippi State (SEC) and Kent State at West Virginia (Big East).  Cleveland State owns the biggest upset to date – taking down Vanderbilt in Nashville.  In other Horizon League action, Detroit missed an opportunity at Notre Dame.  The good news is the Titans still have multiple chances to still make non-conference statements (@Alabama, Mississppi State most notably). CSU’s schedule doesn’t provide the same BCS resume-building opportunities, so beating Vandy was huge.  On a side note: Cleveland State plays both Akron and Kent State. 

In the Missouri Valley, Evansville rallied to beat Butler.  If the Aces can back it up with a win over Indiana (tonight), that’s even better.  Northern Iowa traveled over 3,000 miles in 60 hours – winning a big road game at Old Dominion before falling at St. Mary’s.  A 50-50 split is pretty solid.  MVC favorites Creighton and Wichita State haven’t been tested yet.  But that changes soon – as Creighton plays UAB, Iowa, and San Diego State in its next four games. Wichita State has chances in Puerto Rico this week.

Drexel posted a solid victory (with a 6:00 a.m. tip) at Rider on Tuesday. 

Belmont looked and played like an NCAA team during a brutal two-game road swing.  That’s why we’ll consider the Bruins’ two losses as resume builders.  One would think a single-point loss at Duke and a solid showing at Memphis would hold some weight if the Bruins falter in the Atlantic Sun Tournament.  That said, Belmont’s toughest remaining non-conference opponent is probably Marshall.  Beating the Herd, a potential NCAA team, would certainly be helpful.   Read more…

Categories: Current Updates, Team News

Inside the Bracket: Week 1 Games to Watch

November 7, 2011 Leave a comment

Welcome to Bracketville

It’s time to start tracking results: the regular season begins.

The matchup between North Carolina and Michigan State is certainly Week 1’s primo event.  The Tar Heels open the season ranked No. 1 and are among the favorites to reach the Final Four in New Orleans.  Michigan State has some new faces but also the talent to contend for a top four spot in the Big Ten.  Both UNC and MSU open the year in our Preseason Power 24.  Add in the date (11-11-11), the backdrop (aircraft carrier), and two of the nation’s best coaches (Roy Williams, Tom Izzo), and we have a March-ish game in November.  See Schedule  for more games.

Here are some other Week 1 Games to Watch:

Akron @ Mississippi State (Wed | November 9) – Akron is a contender to win the Mid-American crown (Kent State, Western Michigan are others).  The Zips made the NCAA field in 2011 as an automatic qualifier, but will need good showings – and wins – in non-conference games for strong at-large consideration.  Akron is led by 7-0 center Zeke Marshall and forward Nikola Cvetinovic.  Marshall had 9 blocked shots in last year’s MAC title game.  At Mississippi State, coach Rick Stansbury hopes on and off-court troubles are behind the Bulldogs.  With Dee Bost and Renardo Sidney eligible for a full season, MSU has its sights on the SEC West and an NCAA bid.  Other potential contributors for MSU include UTEP tranfer Arnett Moultrie and star recruit Rodney Hood. 

Belmont @ Duke  (Friday | November 11) – This compelling matchup follows the UNC-MSU game.  Belmont raced through the Atlantic Sun en route to a 30-5 record and NCAA bid last season.  The Bruins return most of their key pieces including Mick Hedgepath, Scott Saunders, and Ian Clark.  Belmont faces Memphis on November 15, so two early chances await.  While winning either game isn’t crucial, keeping the games manageable will be. Other than Marshall, the remaining Bruins’ schedule likely won’t provide much of a boost to their at-large profile. Read more…

Categories: Current Updates, Team News

Top Five stories from a busy NCAA summer …

October 14, 2010 Leave a comment

Welcome to Bracketville

Ready again for college hoops?  In anticipation of the Midnight Madness bracket projection here at Bracketville, time for a quick peek at the Top Five stories from the NCAA off-season. Let’s go …

No. 5 – Kyle Singler returns to Duke: Matched with Nolan Smith and super-recruit Kyrie Irving, Duke will try to match Florida’s back-to-back titles in 2006-2007.  Prior to the Gators’ run, the Blue Devils pulled off the repeat in 1991-1992.  Not sure it’s going to happen, but the crazies from Durham have been a front-runner since May.

No. 4 – Tom Izzo stays at Michigan State: After a lengthy back-and-forth with the Cleveland Cavaliers, one of college hoop’s finest decides to stay in East Lansing.  Forget that LeBron James bolted for Miami, Izzo made the right choice.  He’s a college guy and has an amazing track record at Michigan State.  Think about this … which is hard to remember, when MSU made the Final Four or missed it?  By the way, the Spartans could easily make a third straight trip. 

No. 3 – Recruiting issues at UConn and Tennessee: What a mess for two noteworthy programs.  How much the allegations, potential penalties, and turmoil affect on-court performance remains to be seen.  But it’s not looking good for the Huskies or Volunteers.  Teams have been known to unite in difficult times; they’ve also been known to fall apart.  Given the uncertainty ahead, the latter seems more likely. Update: The NCAA is also now sniffing around at Baylor

No. 2 – Player eligibility: While Dee Bost is back at Mississippi State (albeit with a nine-game suspension), Kentucky and Kansas await major decisions regarding two high-profile recruits … Enes Kanter (UK) and Josh Selby (KU).  The NCAA outcome could certainly change the fortunes of either squad.  Guess here is that both play this season.  How much remains to be seen.  Update: There’s also the case of LaceDarius Dunn at Baylor.  Suspended, somewhat reinstated, but unknown.  The Bears could be a middle-of-the-pack team without him.

No. 1 – Tournament expands to 68 teams:  Better than a once-debated 96-team field, the NCAA added three more at-large bids to create its newest format. Dubbed the First Four, Dayton will host a series of four “play in” games to finalize the traditional 64-team field. The First Four will match the four lowest rated S-curve teams and the last four at-large teams. For the first time, the NCAA Selection Committee will have to reveal its final at-large teams.

As always, rebounds are welcome.  Follow along on Twitter, or send an e-mail to bracketville.hoops@gmail.com.  Here’s to another great season of college hoops.  Tell your friends.  Thanks for visiting Bracketville.

Categories: Current Updates