This is my third installment of bracketology. Before we get into it, let's go over a few notes:
- The Committee looks at: Strength of Schedule, Head-to-Head Competition, RPI (wins against top 5, top 10, and top 20, losses verse teams outside the top 20 in RPI)
- There are 10 automatic qualifiers and eight at-large bids
- Only the top eight teams are seeded
- The #1 and #2 seeds play the winner of play-in games
- The four AQs with the lowest RPI must play in the play-in games
- A team must have a winning record to be an at-large bid
- Non-seeded teams are placed with geographic consideration
- First round matchups are determined with consideration given to separate conference opponents
- If a host school (Ohio State and Brown) make the Tournament they have to play in that city
This weekend we saw two programs punch tickets to the NCAA Tournament. Loyola was able to hang on and beat Army in the Patriot League Championship, preventing Army from taking an at-large bid away from a bubble team. The Syracuse Orange came out and surprised everybody by knocking off UNC on Friday and then Duke in a Sunday game that took over five hours to complete. I think Syracuse now has the quality wins to have earned a home game in the opening round.
This weekend the big tournament will be the Big Ten. Penn State, Hopkins, Maryland and Rutgers will all be fighting for the B10 crown. Maryland and Hopkins are safely into the NCAAT, but Rutgers and Penn State are still on the bubble. Navy really left the door open by falling to Army in the Patriot League semifinals. Right now I have Navy, Marquette, and Villanova in my bracket but each are very vulnerable and could exit if Rutgers or PSU wins the conference.
The Ivy League will hold its tournament beginning Friday, but I do not expect Penn or Harvard to make it to the Conference Championship game. In the end I believe we will have a rematch of Brown-Yale.
Check out the bracket and let me know what you think in the comment section.
AmEast: Albany Great Danes
Big East: Denver Pioneers
Big Ten: Maryland Terrapins
Colonial: Towson Tigers
Ivy: Brown Bears
Metro: Quinnipiac Bobcats
Northeast: Bryant Bulldogs
Patriot: Loyola Greyhounds
SoCon: Air Force Falcons
#1 Maryland/Big Ten vs. Quinnipiac/Metro Atlantic or Bryant/Northeast
#8 Loyola/Patriot vs. Johns Hopkins
#4 Notre Dame vs. Marquette
#5 Syracuse/ACC vs. Navy
#3 Brown/Ivy vs. Villanova
#6 Albany/AmEast vs. UNC
#2 Denver/Big East vs. Air Force/SoCon or Towson/CAA
#7 Yale vs. Duke
Next out: Villanova, Marquette, Navy
Next in: Rutgers, Penn State, Stony Brook