Is it stupid? Yes.
Does it still technically qualify as “news”? Yep.
Reminding us that there are some selection criteria beyond “who’s best, who’s next” in the NCAA Tournament, the Selection Committee gave us a look at its Top 16 teams. (There’s an excellent explanation in that link of geographic 2-seeding after the 1-seeds are placed.) It’s also worth noting that the Big Ten representative on the Committee is Northwestern AD Jim Phillips, while the ACC is represented by Duke AD Kevin White.
Here they are:
- What a brutal draw for Purdue. They hang onto the 1-seed even after their loss to Michigan State, but get three “blue blood” programs lurking beneath them on the selection line. On top of that, they’re shunted out West, where they’d be outnumbered by Kansas/Arizona fans, along with whoever from the Pac-12/WCC/MWC is in the West.
- I’d be wary with Michigan State’s turnover propensity against the aggressive Cincinnati defense, but I’ll be honest—I have a hard time taking the Bearcats beyond the Sweet Sixteen in any bracket.
- Ohio State sneaks in! There’s a little “controversy,” apparently, that the Gonzaga Bulldogs were snubbed off the 4-seed line, especially with the ‘Zags sitting at 7 in Kenpom and...well, being Gonzaga. But I like the retooled (from the non-conference) Buckeyes to hang with about anyone in the country at this point.
- Would anyone be afraid of the Midwest as currently constructed? I’m also not buying that Xavier holds on—look for Purdue (or Michigan State, if they win the conference) to slide into the Midwest before it’s all over.
Let us know your thoughts in the comments! Look for our bracketology roundup later this week, too!