March Insanity bracket predictions 2.0: Projecting the Discipline of 68 for 2021 NCAA Match

It’s March. That’s as a lot of an intro to this week’s Discipline of 68 NCAA Match projections as you want, proper? Cool. Let’s go. 

As all the time, Sporting Information’ Discipline of 68 projections are based mostly on the place groups ought to be seeded based mostly on how resumes evaluate, if the season ended yesterday. For every group, I’ve included a few rankings and data that might be very related when the choice committee meets to construct the true bracket. 

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Automated bids (famous in parenthesis) go to the group with the most effective convention report. In case of a tie, the bid is given to the group with the most effective NET ranking.

Projected No. 1 seeds

Gonzaga (West Coast), Michigan (Huge Ten), Baylor (Huge 12), Illinois

Gonzaga (24-0): NET/Pom: 1/1. vs. Q1: 7-0. vs. Q3/4: 12-0
Michigan (18-1): NET/Pom: 2/2. vs. Q1: 8-1. vs. Q3/4: 5-0
Baylor (18-1): NET/Pom: 3/3. vs. Q1: 6-1. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
Illinois (18-6): NET/Pom: 5/6. vs. Q1: 8-5. vs. Q3/4: 5-0

Baylor suffered its first lack of the season, however the Bears are in little or no hazard of dropping off the highest seed line. The one means that will occur could be in the event that they misplaced their ultimate three regular-season games AND the Huge 12 Match opener. Even then, they’d nonetheless be a worthy candidate. Ohio State dropped off this week and Illinois ascends to that fourth spot on the No. 1 seed line. The Illini dropped a game on the highway towards a surging Michigan State group every week in the past, however rebounded with a workmanlike win over Nebraska and a win at Wisconsin, which is all the time spectacular. 

Projected No. 2 seeds

Ohio State, Alabama (SEC), Iowa, Houston

Ohio State (18-7): NET/Pom: 8/7. vs. Q1: 7-5. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
Alabama (19-6): NET/Pom: 7/8. vs. Q1: 7-4. vs. Q3/4: 6-1
Iowa (18-7): NET/Pom: 6/5. vs. Q1: 5-6. vs. Q3/4: 5-0
Houston (19-3): NET/Pom: 4/4. vs. Q1: 2-1. vs. Q3/4: 13-1

The Huge Ten schedule is brutal, and the Buckeyes are stumbling a bit proper now. They’ve misplaced three in a row — at dwelling vs. Michigan and Iowa, and at Michigan State. Their ultimate regular-season tilt is at dwelling on Saturday towards Illinois, towards the group that took the No. 1 seed from them this week. Iowa had the great win at Ohio State, however that adopted a 22-point loss at Michigan. The Hawkeyes began properly after which had been run out of the health club within the final half-hour or so.

Projected No. 3 seeds

West Virginia, Villanova (Huge East), Kansas, Florida State (ACC)

West Virginia (17-6): NET/Pom: 13/19. vs. Q1: 6-6. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Villanova (15-4): NET/Pom: 11/10. vs. Q1: 2-3. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Kansas (17-8): NET/Pom: 10/18. vs. Q1: 6-8. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Florida State (14-4): NET/Pom: 14/9. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 5-1

An excellent case might be made for West Virginia forward of Houston on the 2-seed line, and the Mountaineers have an incredible probability to solidify that case down the stretch. Their ultimate three games are at dwelling towards Baylor, TCU and Oklahoma State; win all three and so they’ll virtually definitely be a 2 seed — and a darkish horse for that ultimate 1-seed spot. It’s telling that, in a 12 months when the Jayhawks will lose their grip on the Huge 12 title (Baylor will run away with that), Kansas nonetheless will wind up as a top-4 seed.

Projected No. 4 seeds

Arkansas, Virginia, Oklahoma State, Texas

Arkansas (19-5): NET/Pom: 18/17. vs. Q1: 6-4. vs. Q3/4: 9-0
Virginia (16-6): NET/Pom: 20/15. vs. Q1: 3-4. vs. Q3/4: 9-1
Oklahoma State (17-6): NET/Pom: 31/35. vs. Q1: 8-4. vs. Q3/4: 8-1
Texas (14-7): NET/Pom: 27/25. vs. Q1: 4-7. vs. Q3/4: 7-0

Arkansas has performed wonders for its eventual NCAA Match seed in current weeks, knocking off 4 tournament-bound groups in a row: Missouri, Florida, Alabama and LSU. The Razorbacks went from the 8/9/10 seed vary to a probable spot within the prime 5. Spectacular. And talking of spectacular, how about Oklahoma State? Cade Cunningham and the Cowboys have 4 OT wins this 12 months, all towards groups that can simply earn at-large bids. That sweep of Oklahoma (one on Saturday, one on Monday) was particularly spectacular. 

Projected No. 5 seeds

Oklahoma, Purdue, Texas Tech, Florida

Oklahoma (14-8): NET/Pom: 30/31. vs. Q1: 5-6. vs. Q3/4: 8-1
Purdue (16-8): NET/Pom: 22/13. vs. Q1: 5-7. vs. Q3/4: 5-1
Texas Tech (15-8): NET/Pom: 15/23. vs. Q1: 5-7. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
Florida (13-6): NET/Pom: 26/27. vs. Q1: 5-3. vs. Q3/4: 5-1

Clearly the Sooners would have liked to at the very least break up with Oklahoma State, and that would have occurred; one game went to OT and the opposite was determined by 4 factors. However the factor that basically hurts the resume? The game earlier than that, a loss on the highway to a Okay-State group that the Sooners beat by 26 factors earlier this season. The Wildcats are ranked 200 within the NET — even after beating OU — and hadn’t crushed a group within the NET prime 100 all season. Yikes. 

Projected No. 6 seeds

Creighton, Colorado, Clemson, Tennessee

Creighton (17-6): NET/Pom: 25/15. vs. Q1: 4-2. vs. Q3/4: 6-3
Colorado (19-7): NET/Pom: 12/16. vs. Q1: 3-4. vs. Q3/4: 9-3
Clemson (15-5): NET/Pom: 33/38. vs. Q1: 4-5. vs. Q3/4: 5-0
Tennessee (16-7): NET/Pom: 21/24. vs. Q1: 5-5. vs. Q3/4: 10-0

Colorado had an enormous week, successful dwelling games towards USC and UCLA. The Buffs have strong pc numbers, as you see, however the three Quad 3 losses aren’t going to assist when the committee does its seed scrub. They’ll want as many high quality wins as attainable. Clemson continues to roll alongside, successful 5 in a row in ACC play, and instantly a resume with solely 5 losses — and neutral-court non-conference wins towards Alabama and Purdue — begins to look fairly darn good.

Projected No. 7 seeds

Missouri, Wisconsin, Virginia Tech, USC

Missouri (14-7): NET/Pom: 46/48. vs. Q1: 6-4. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Wisconsin (16-9): NET/Pom: 24/11. vs. Q1: 3-8. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Virginia Tech (15-5): NET/Pom: 44/46. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
USC (19-6): NET/Pom: 25/21. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 12-0

Wisconsin’s pc metrics are strong, as all the time, and so they have a handful of strong victories, however the Badgers lack a “signature” win in a convention with numerous signature-win alternatives — they’re 0-6 mixed towards Michigan, Ohio State, Illinois and Iowa. 

Projected No. 8 seeds

UCLA (Pac 12), Oregon, BYU, San Diego State (Mountain West)

UCLA (17-6): NET/Pom: 39/41. vs. Q1: 2-4. vs. Q3/4: 12-0
Oregon (17-5): NET/Pom: 42/37. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 9-2
BYU (18-5): NET/Pom: 19/22. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
San Diego State (18-4): NET/Pom: 17/20. vs. Q1: 0-3. vs. Q3/4: 12-0

San Diego State had been tied atop the Mountain West within the loss column with Boise State and Colorado State with three league losses every. However the Aztecs knocked a kind of groups — the Broncos — out of the dialog with a sweep at dwelling final week. Each games had been shut (one in OT, one determined by 4 factors) however San Diego State got here away with wins each instances and went a good distance towards firming up that at-large bid. 

Projected No. 9 seeds

Louisville, LSU, Maryland, Loyola Chicago (Missouri Valley)

Louisville (13-5): NET/Pom: 47/44. vs. Q1: 1-4. vs. Q3/4: 6-1
LSU (14-8): NET/Pom: 29/29. vs. Q1: 3-8. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Maryland (15-10): NET/Pom: 28/26. vs. Q1: 5-9. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Loyola Chicago (19-4): NET/Pom: 16/12. vs. Q1: 1-2. vs. Q3/4: 14-0

Louisville bought a much-needed Quad 1 win on Saturday, knocking off Duke in Durham. That’s not the elite win it might be most years, however for a resume with an enormous ol’ zero within the Q1 win column, it was nonetheless big for Louisville. LSU, then again, misplaced back-to-back highway games. The one at Arkansas wasn’t so dangerous; the one at Georgia was a bit extra painful. 

Projected No. 10 seeds

Rutgers, North Carolina, UConn, St. Bonaventure (Atlantic 10)

Rutgers (13-10): NET/Pom: 38/32. vs. Q1: 4-8. vs. Q3/4: 5-0
North Carolina (15-9): NET/Pom: 45/33. vs. Q1: 2-8. vs. Q3/4: 7-1
UConn (12-6): NET/Pom: 35/28. vs. Q1: 2-3. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
St. Bonaventure (13-4): NET/Pom: 32/34. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 9-1

4 of UConn’s six losses this 12 months got here with star James Bouknight out of the lineup. In games he’s performed, the Huskies’ solely setbacks had been in OT towards Creighton and by single digits on the highway at Villanova. That issues to the committee. He’s again and scored a complete of 44 factors in straightforward wins towards Marquette and Georgetown final week. 

Projected No. 11 seeds

Xavier, Colorado State, VCU, Drake, Boise State

Xavier (13-5): NET/Pom: 50/55. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
Colorado State (15-4): NET/Pom: 40/61. vs. Q1: 2-3. vs. Q3/4: 12-0
VCU (17-6): NET/Pom: 37/50. vs. Q1: 1-4. vs. Q3/4: 9-2
*Drake (22-3): NET/Pom: 42/56. vs. Q1: 1-1. vs. Q3/4: 17-2
*Boise State (17-6): NET/Pom: 34/52. vs. Q1: 2-4. vs. Q3/4: 13-0

We talked about Boise’s shut calls at San Diego State final week as a result of successful simply one of many two would have given the Broncos one other high quality highway win to go together with the Ws at BYU and at Colorado State and assist the committee forgive two highway losses at Nevada. Drake has that shiny report, however the loss towards Bradley final week isn’t useful. 

Projected No. 12 seeds

Georgia Tech, Saint Louis, Wichita State (American), Western Kentucky (Convention USA), Colgate (Patriot)

*Georgia Tech (13-8): NET/Pom: 41/30. vs. Q1: 2-6. vs. Q3/4: 6-2
*Saint Louis (13-5): NET/Pom: 43/42. vs. Q1: 1-2. vs. Q3/4: 9-2

Georgia Tech began its season with losses at dwelling to Georgia State and Mercer, however the Jackets now have wins towards Florida State, Clemson, Virginia Tech, North Carolina and Syracuse, and that’s sufficient to get on this week. Saint Louis makes it within the ultimate spot, however principally as a result of Seton Corridor, Indiana and Stanford had terrible weeks. 

No. 13 seeds: Belmont (Ohio Valley), UC Santa Barbara (Huge West), Winthrop (Huge South), Toledo (MAC)
No. 14 seeds: UNCG (Southern), Cleveland State (Horizon), Abilene Christian (Southland), Liberty (Atlantic Solar)
No. 15 seeds: Vermont (America East), Japanese Washington (Huge Sky), James Madison (Colonial), Grand Canyon (WAC)
No. 16 seeds: Siena (MAAC), South Dakota State (Summit), *Texas State (Solar Belt), *Prairie View A&M (SWAC), *Bryant(Northeast), *North Carolina A&T (MEAC)

*First 4 groups

Dropped out: Indiana, North Texas, Seton Corridor, South Dakota State, Stanford, Wagner, Wright State

Newbies: Bryant, Cleveland State, Georgia Tech, Saint Louis, South Dakota, UConn, Western Kentucky

First 4 out

Michigan State (13-10): NET/Pom: 77/63. vs. Q1: 4-9. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Seton Corridor (13-10): NET/Pom: 53/43. vs. Q1: 3-6. vs. Q3/4: 7-1
Duke (11-9): NET/Pom: 58/36. vs. Q1: 2-3. vs. Q3/4: 5-3
Indiana (12-12): NET/Pom: 57/37. vs. Q1: 3-9. vs. Q3/4: 3-2

Different bubble groups (alphabetical)
Memphis (14-6): NET/Pom: 59/47. vs. Q1: 0-2. vs. Q3/4: 10-1
Minnesota (13-12): NET/Pom: 70/57. vs. Q1: 4-10. vs. Q3/4: 8-1
Mississippi (13-10): NET/Pom: 60/58. vs. Q1: 3-4. vs. Q3/4: 6-2
SMU (11-4): NET/Pom: 54/51. vs. Q1: 0-3. vs. Q3/4: 7-1
Stanford (14-11): NET/Pom: 63/70. vs. Q1: 4-5. vs. Q3/4: 9-1
Syracuse (14-8): NET/Pom: 55/59. vs. Q1: 1-6. vs. Q3/4: 10-1
Utah State (14-7): NET/Pom: 48/45. vs. Q1: 2-4. vs. Q3/4: 12-2

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