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There have been just two occurrences since 1985 where no double-digit seeds made the Sweet 16. In fact, teams with a No. 10 seed or lower have advanced to that point 59 times in 27 years. Last year, there were four such teams in the Round of 16. Marquette, VCU, Florida State and Richmond all won at least two games.
Teams to Watch
No. 10 Xavier
If they can get past No. 7 Notre Dame in their opening game, they have a nice matchup against a troubled No. 2 seed in Duke. Xavier won their only game when facing a Top 25 team this year, taking down then-No. 19 Vanderbilt on November 28.
No. 11 NC State
NC State nearly found themselves playing for the ACC Tournament title Sunday, but instead lost a heart-breaker to UNC 69-67 in the semis. The team gets a favorable contest against No. 6 San Diego State which could lead to a possible Round of 32 game with No. 3 Georgetown.
No. 11 Texas
Though the Longhorns were just 9-9 in the Big 12, they had to face Baylor, Kansas and Missouri twice each, resulting in six losses. Their losses at home against these top teams were all by five points or less, so Texas can hang with the best of them. They get a close matchup with Cincinnati to start off, and will likely need to get through Florida State to land a spot in the Sweet 16.
No. 12 Long Beach State
Long Beach State is an exciting Cinderella pick for 2012. They hung with Kansas and UNC when they played them on the road in early December and beat Xavier by 10 on December 22. They face New Mexico in the Round of 64 and could meet Louisville with a win—both are intriguing contests that could be winnable for the 49ers.