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Posts Tagged ‘NCAA Tournament’

Quick Takes: Tennessee trimming its resume tree

December 16, 2018 Leave a comment

Dave2015In a bygone era it was common for folks to trim the tree – which involved actual trimming, and decorating, of the family Christmas tree.  Here at Bracketville, Tennessee is trimming a different kind of tree, a resume tree. Careful to remove any untidy branches, the Volunteers marched into Memphis on Saturday and snipped off any thoughts of a letdown after beating Gonzaga.  Given the fever pitch at the arena, it was a better-than-you-think road victory against a rival.  Teams with high seeds in March are routinely good at winning away from home.  Without a significant stumble, Tennessee should be 10-1 when it opens SEC play against Georgia on January 5. Read more…

Quick Takes: Duke dominates, Buckeyes happy in ‘Nati

November 8, 2018 Leave a comment

Dave2015With the 2018-19 college basketball season underway, it’s time to bring back Quick Takes.  So let’s get to it …

Duke dominated Kentucky in Indianapolis on opening night, sending a few shockwaves though the college hoops world along the way.  That said, let’s reign in the talk of an undefeated season.  The Blue Devils still have a host of worthy non-conference opponents in front of them, not to mention some tricky road trips through the Atlantic Coast Conference.  Does Duke look like a title contender? Absolutely.  Are they unbeatable?  That’s a question better reserved for February or March.

Kansas looked pretty good, too, mind you.  As did Michigan State – particularly in the second half.  KU get’s the benefit of an early resume boost, but nothing else changed.  Both teams looked the part of being high seeds come Selection Sunday. Read more…

Preseason: Kansas, Kentucky lead opening bracket

October 29, 2018 Leave a comment

Dave2015A new college basketball season is upon us, which means another journey toward Selection Sunday and March Madness.  With that in mind, we offer up our annual preseason bracket projection, an exercise that is most certainly more art than science.

Preseason Bracket   |   Seed List

What we think we know is that Kansas, Kentucky, Duke, and Gonzaga are among a handful of teams that figure to be in the conversation for No. 1 seeds.  Another strong group includes such names as North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, and, yes, even Villanova. And then there’s Nevada, a hungry and hearty Wolfpack with their own Final Four aspirations.

One thing’s for certain, the bracket will look a lot different come March.  That’s the beauty of college hoops.  Enjoy the ride!

Bracketology: Tar Heels trek to top line

February 20, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015If today were Selection Sunday, and North Carolina was the ACC champion, the Selection Committee would likely be inclined to reward the Tar Heels with a No. 1 seed over a very good Baylor team whose profile is equally impressive but lacks a conference title. In the world of splitting hairs, we just did.  On that note, two interesting twists await.  First, UNC hosts Louisville on Wednesday, and the Cardinals are No. 6 on the Seed List.  If Louisville wins in Chapel Hill, the Cards could make a strong case for the top line on Thursday.  Second, the Tar Heels close with an incredibly tough slate, going to Pittsburgh and Virginia before finishing at home with Duke.  Baylor can easily play its way back up.

Bracketology   |   Seed List

In the race for No. 1 seeds, Villanova and Kansas are sitting in strong positions as the regular season comes to a close. Should Gonzaga finish unbeaten, it would hard to drop the Zags from their No. 1 perch in the West.  Which leaves, at least for now, one top seed up for grabs, and it could go any number of ways.

Another meh and blah weekend along the cutline.  Should we lose solid mid-major programs like Middle Tennessee State, UNC Wilmington, and say, Monmouth or Illinois State during their conference championships, the Committee will have to heavily weigh a bunch of mediocre power teams versus some solid programs who have fewer chances for marquee wins.

Quick Takes: Middle Tennessee St leads early mid-major hopefuls

February 3, 2017 Leave a comment

Dave2015If you’re looking for a quality non-power conference team that could earn an at-large bid on Selection Sunday, Middle Tennessee State should be near the top of your list.  If the name sounds familiar, think back to last year’s NCAA tournament.  The then 15th-seeded Blue Raiders knocked off No. 2 seed Michigan State in St. Louis before losing to eventual Final Four participant Syracuse in the Round of 32.  As we look ahead, Giddy Potts and MTSU are 19-3 with Top 100 RPI wins over UNC-Wilmington, Vanderbilt, Ole Miss, and Belmont.  The Blue Raiders are 8-1 on the road and have some pretty solid metric numbers:

Middle Tennessee State … RPI: 37 | BPI: 52 | SOR: 31 | KP: 47

Unfortunately, Conference USA hasn’t provided MTSU with much support; the Blue Raiders are the only team in the RPI’s Top 100, and six of the schools are 300-plus.  That’s a recipe for picking up a really bad loss.  The good news, MTSU has avoided that issue.  If that continues, the Blue Raiders should receive strong consideration were they to lose in the C-USA tournament final.

Here are a few other mid-major hopefuls as we head into February: Read more…