By: CBN | 5/22/12
We are less than a week away from selection Monday. However, that does not mean the field of 64 is anywhere near to being set. In fact, with many conference tournaments throwing out the first pitch on Tuesday, automatic bids are up for grabs which can really shake up the bubble in this final week. Four automatic bids have already been locked up in the Ivy League (Cornell), MEAC (Bethune-Cookman), NEC (Sacred Heart), and the SWAC (Prairie View A&M). Those teams are for sure going to be in the NCAA Tournament, the rest is all a projection, which is exactly what we have here. But first, some notes:
– Florida St. and Baylor enter their respective tournaments by closing out the regular seasons strong. At this point, both The Seminoles and The Bears could go 2-and-Q this week and still be the top two national seeds.
– LSU gets the nod as the highest ranked SEC team after a sweep on the road over South Carolina secured The Tigers an SEC Championship. Florida enter right behind them at five despite being ranked atop the RPI.
– While it was pretty apparent coming into this week who the first seven national seeds were, the eighth and final spot was up for grabs. Rice, Kentucky, and Stanford all had a legitimate case to be there, however it's South Carolina that we gave the nod to after they edged out Florida for the SEC East title (albeit they backed into it losing to LSU).
– The SEC and ACC lead the way with eight entrants each. The SoCon, MVC, and WCC are the three mid-majors that are well represented with three teams each.
Here it is:
|LAST FIVE IN: Southeastern Louisiana, Elon, St. John's, Ole Miss, Tulane|
FIRST FIVE OUT: Maryland, Georgia, Illinois St., Samford, Virginia Tech
– By conference, the projected field of 64 breaks down like this (* denotes conference champion):
America East: Stony Brook*
Atlantic 10: St. Louis*
ACC: Florida St.*, North Carolina, Virginia, North Carolina St., Miami, Clemson, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech
Atlantic Sun: Belmont*
Big 10: Purdue*
Big 12: Baylor*, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Texas
Big East: Louisville*, St. John's
Big South: Coastal Carolina*
Big West: Cal St. Fullerton*
C-USA: Rice*, Central Florida, Tulane
Independent: Dallas Baptist
Ivy League: Cornell*
Metro Atlantic: Manhattan*
Mid-American: Kent St.*
Missouri Valley: Indiana St.*, Missouri St., Wichita St.
Mountain West: TCU*
Northeast: Sacred Heart*
Ohio Valley: Austin Peay St.*
Pac 12: Oregon*, UCLA, Stanford, Arizona, Oregon St.
SEC: LSU*, Florida, South Carolina, Kentucky, Mississippi St., Arkansas, Ole Miss, Vanderbilt
Southern: Appalachian St.*, College of Charleston, Elon
Southland: Sam Houston St.*, Southeastern Louisiana
SWAC: Prairie View A&M*
Summit: Oral Roberts*
Sun Belt: Florida Atlantic*
West Coast: San Diego*, Pepperdine, Gonzaga
WAC: New Mexico St.*
Any questions or comments about this projection are welcomed and encouraged. Speak your mind via email (email@example.com) or through twitter (@CB__Nation).