March Insanity bracket predictions 3.0: Projecting the Area of 68 for 2021 NCAA Event

Choice Sunday is, effectively, Sunday. How cool is that? 

As at all times, Sporting Information’ Area of 68 projections are based mostly on the place groups ought to be seeded based mostly on how resumes examine, if the season ended yesterday. We’re not predicting how this week will play out as a result of we don’t know how this week will play out. For every workforce, I’ve included a few rankings and information that can be very related when the choice committee meets to construct the true bracket. 

MORE: March Insanity alternative guidelines, defined

Groups which have clinched computerized bids have double asterisks. Auto bids for conferences that haven’t accomplished their tournaments are given to the best remaining seed, and people are famous in parenthesis.

Projected No. 1 seeds

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

Gonzaga (24-0): NET/Pom: 1/1. vs. Q1: 7-0. vs. Q3/4: 13-0
Baylor (21-1): NET/Pom: 2/2. vs. Q1: 8-1. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
Michigan (19-3): NET/Pom: 3/3. vs. Q1: 7-2. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Illinois (20-6): NET/Pom: 4/5. vs. Q1: 9-5. vs. Q3/4: 6-0

Keep in mind how we advised you that Gonzaga, Baylor and Michigan all had loads of room for error on the highest seed line? Nicely, Michigan examined that principle final week, with a blowout loss at residence in opposition to Illinois and a loss to a Michigan State workforce that’s simply clawed its approach again onto the bubble previously few weeks. And the Wolverines are nonetheless strong on the 1-seed line. 

Projected No. 2 seeds

Alabama (SEC), Iowa, Ohio State, Houston

Alabama (21-6): NET/Pom: 7/8. vs. Q1: 7-4. vs. Q3/4: 6-1
Iowa (20-7): NET/Pom: 6/4. vs. Q1: 7-5. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Ohio State (18-8): NET/Pom: 9/7. vs. Q1: 7-6. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Houston (20-3): NET/Pom: 5/6. vs. Q1: 2-1. vs. Q3/4: 13-1

It’s been a tough stretch for Ohio State; the Buckeyes have misplaced 4 in a row — at Michigan State and at residence to Michigan, Illinois and Iowa. 4 good groups, so that they don’t drop a lot, but when they’d have gone 2-2 in these 4, they’d doubtless be on the 1 seed line as a substitute of Illinois. 

Projected No. 3 seeds

Arkansas, Oklahoma State, Virginia (ACC), Texas

Arkansas (21-5): NET/Pom: 16/18. vs. Q1: 6-4. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
Oklahoma State (18-7): NET/Pom: 33/37. vs. Q1: 8-5. vs. Q3/4: 8-1
Virginia (17-6): NET/Pom: 13/12. vs. Q1: 4-4. vs. Q3/4: 9-1
Texas (17-7): NET/Pom: 24/26. vs. Q1: 6-6. vs. Q3/4: 8-0

Three weeks in the past, I’d not have guessed that Arkansas could be on the 3-seed line, however faculty basketball is nothing if not unpredictable. The Razorbacks have gained eight in a row, together with Ws over Alabama, Mizzou (on the street), Florida and LSU. Their non-con slate wasn’t nice, nevertheless it’s price noting that every one 5 of their losses are to groups that can solidly make the NCAA Event as at-large groups. 

Projected No. 4 seeds

Kansas, West Virginia, Florida State, Texas, Villanova (Large East)

Kansas (18-8): NET/Pom: 14/22. vs. Q1: 6-8. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
West Virginia (18-8): NET/Pom: 23/25. vs. Q1: 6-7. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
Florida State (15-5): NET/Pom: 22/14. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 6-1
Villanova (16-5): NET/Pom: 11/10. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 8-0

West Virginia was sitting there at 16-6 with 4 games remaining — all at residence, the place the Mountaineers have historically been powerful. However they misplaced the 2 games in opposition to high quality groups (in OT vs. Baylor and by 5 factors to Oklahoma State). With these losses evaporating any longshot at a No. 1 seed, and any life like shot at a 2 seed, too. 

Projected No. 5 seeds

Purdue, USC, Colorado, Tennessee

Purdue (18-8): NET/Pom: 20/13. vs. Q1: 6-6. vs. Q3/4: 5-1
USC (21-6): NET/Pom: 15/15. vs. Q1: 4-3. vs. Q3/4: 12-0
Colorado (20-7): NET/Pom: 12/16. vs. Q1: 3-4. vs. Q3/4: 10-3
Tennessee (17-7): NET/Pom: 18/23. vs. Q1: 6-5. vs. Q3/4: 10-0

The Pac-12 groups are tough to seed. You see the strong pc metrics for USC and Colorado, however each groups are mild on Q1 victories, in contrast with different groups with top-16 metrics. And Colorado has these three Q3 losses, which isn’t nice. After which think about Oregon, which has decrease metrics however earned the No. 1 seed within the Pac-12 Event. The protected guess for these three groups is someplace within the 5-7 seed vary for the time being. 

Projected No. 6 seeds

Creighton, Oregon (Pac 12), Texas Tech, Clemson

Creighton (18-7): NET/Pom: 25/17. vs. Q1: 4-3. vs. Q3/4: 7-3
Oregon (19-5): NET/Pom: 32/35. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 9-2
Texas Tech (17-9): NET/Pom: 17/21. vs. Q1: 4-9. vs. Q3/4: 12-0
Clemson (16-6): NET/Pom: 36/38. vs. Q1: 3-6. vs. Q3/4: 6-0

Each Creighton and Texas Tech are greater on different bracket projections. Creighton’s three Q3 losses are troublesome, and Texas Tech went 0-8 in Large 12 play in opposition to 4 of the 5 high groups within the convention: Baylor, Kansas, West Virginia and Oklahoma State. I simply don’t suppose these resumes scrub effectively when the committee will get to the nitty gritty.  

Projected No. 7 seeds

Missouri, Oklahoma, LSU, Florida

Missouri (15-8): NET/Pom: 45/48. vs. Q1: 7-5. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Oklahoma (14-9): NET/Pom: 30/31. vs. Q1: 5-8. vs. Q3/4: 8-1
LSU (16-8): NET/Pom: 28/28. vs. Q1: 4-7. vs. Q3/4: 9-0
Florida (13-8): NET/Pom: 29/30. vs. Q1: 5-4. vs. Q3/4: 5-1

Numerous hit-or-miss SEC colleges on this seed line. That wasn’t intentional, I promise. 

Projected No. 8 seeds

UConn, Virginia Tech, Wisconsin, UCLA

UConn (14-6): NET/Pom: 31/24. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Virginia Tech (15-5): NET/Pom: 42/47. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 10-0
Wisconsin (16-11): NET/Pom: 26/11. vs. Q1: 4-9. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
UCLA (17-8): NET/Pom: 41/42. vs. Q1: 2-6. vs. Q3/4: 12-0

Wisconsin has 11 losses and is eleventh within the KenPom scores. That must be a primary, proper? The Badgers had been 0-8 in Large Ten play in opposition to Michigan, Illinois, Ohio State, Iowa and Purdue, and their greatest win of the season might be in opposition to a Missouri Valley workforce (Loyola Chicago). 

Projected No. 9 seeds

St. Bonaventure (Atlantic 10), BYU, San Diego State (Mountain West), Loyola Chicago (Missouri Valley)

St. Bonaventure (15-4): NET/Pom: 27/27. vs. Q1: 3-2. vs. Q3/4: 9-1
BYU (18-5): NET/Pom: 19/20. vs. Q1: 3-3. vs. Q3/4: 11-0
San Diego State (19-4): NET/Pom: 21/19. vs. Q1: 0-3. vs. Q3/4: 13-0
**Loyola Chicago (22-4): NET/Pom: 10/9. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 16-0

Once more, an unintentional grouping. 4 groups exterior the “energy” conferences with sparking information. If I’m a 1 seed, I’d be anxious about going through any of those 4 within the second spherical. 

Projected No. 10 seeds

North Carolina, VCU, Rutgers, Georgia Tech

North Carolina (16-9): NET/Pom: 39/32. vs. Q1: 2-8. vs. Q3/4: 7-1
VCU (19-6): NET/Pom: 35/43. vs. Q1: 2-4. vs. Q3/4: 10-2
Rutgers (14-10): NET/Pom: 37/33. vs. Q1: 4-8. vs. Q3/4: 5-0
Georgia Tech (15-8): NET/Pom: 38/31. vs. Q1: 2-6. vs. Q3/4: 7-2

A win over Duke isn’t what it was in earlier years, however the Tar Heels just about eliminated any lingering doubts about their at-large standing with their 18-point win over the Blue Devils on Saturday. Partially as a result of it was a good resume win, but in addition as a result of that doubtless knocked Duke off the bubble. 

Projected No. 11 seeds

Maryland, Michigan State, Louisville, **Winthrop (Large South)

Maryland (14-12): NET/Pom: 34/29. vs. Q1: 4-9. vs. Q3/4: 8-0
Michigan State (15-11): NET/Pom: 67/56. vs. Q1: 5-9. vs. Q3/4: 6-0
Louisville (13-6): NET/Pom: 51/52. vs. Q1: 1-5. vs. Q3/4: 6-1

What are you doing, Maryland? The Terps dropped games to Northwestern and Penn State to finish their common season, groups which might be a mixed eight games underneath .500 on the season. They dropped to the No. 8 seed within the Large Ten Event and should face a highly regarded — and motivated — Michigan State squad. Yikes. 

Projected No. 12 seeds

Drake, Saint Louis, Wichita State (American), Western Kentucky (Convention USA),

*Colorado State (16-5): NET/Pom: 50/61. vs. Q1: 2-3. vs. Q3/4: 13-0
*Drake (23-4): NET/Pom: 47/55. vs. Q1: 1-2. vs. Q3/4: 17-2
*Xavier (13-7): NET/Pom: 57/60. vs. Q1: 1-2. vs. Q3/4: 7-0
*Saint Louis (14-6): NET/Pom: 44/49. vs. Q1: 2-2. vs. Q3/4: 10-2

The great factor for the groups that snuck into the ultimate 4 at-large berths this week is that this: Seton Corridor, Indiana, Minnesota, Duke and Stanford had terrible weeks. So, y’know, the competitors for the previous couple of spots was extra a battle of attrition than a rush to the end. 

No. 13 seeds: Colgate (Patriot), UC Santa Barbara (Large West), UNCG (Southern), Toledo (MAC)
No. 14 seeds: Cleveland State (Horizon), **Liberty (Atlantic Solar), **Morehead State (Ohio Valley), Grand Canyon (WAC)
No. 15 seeds: Siena (MAAC), Hartford (America East), Southern Utah (Large Sky), Northeastern (Colonial)
No. 16 seeds: South Dakota State (Summit), Nicholls State (Southland), *Georgia State (Solar Belt), *Prairie View A&M (SWAC), *Bryant (Northeast), *North Carolina A&T (MEAC)

*First 4 groups
** Groups which have clinched computerized bids

Dropped out: Abilene Christian, Belmont, Boise State, Japanese Washington, James Madison, Texas State, Vermont

Newbies: Georgia State, Hartford, Michigan State Morehead State, Nicholls State, Northeastern, Southern Utah

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