Before we get into the bracket I just want to remind everyone that this bracket is based on an end of season projection. That distinction is certainly important when looking at a number of teams with hard schedules down the stretch and I just want to make sure it’s clear.
Before I get into the bracket. How about Wisconsin? The Badgers have gone from projected to barely make the NIT on Jan. 1 to being in the NCAA tournament in this latest bracket. Greg Gard is quite the miracle worker.
NCAA bubble teams (alphabetical): Colorado, Florida St., LSU, Saint Joseph’s, Pittsburgh, Seton Hall, South Carolina, St. Bonaventure, Syracuse, Vanderbilt, VCU, Wisconsin
Teams in italics are on the bubble due to potential automatic bids to No. 1 seeds in conference tournaments.
1. Saint Mary’s
8. UC Irvine
5. Ohio St.
7. Arizona St.
4. Kansas St.
3. Oregon St.
6. William & Mary
1. Texas Tech
8. Long Beach St.
6. Northern Iowa
2. George Washington
7. Boise St.
5. James Madison
Also seriously considered (alphabetical): Arkansas, Charleston, Davidson, Georgia Tech, Illinois St., Northwestern, Rhode Island, UNLV, UT Arlington
Projected below .500: North Carolina St., Stanford, Tennessee, Virginia Tech
One note on the bracket. I swapped Mississippi (last 7 seed) and Richmond (first 8 seed) because two SEC teams shouldn’t play each other in the first round of the NIT. Otherwise everything else reflects a team’s true seed.