Selection Sunday is here, and with it a complete road map we know simply as the March Madness bracket.
Since we at On the Bubble can't wait for the festivities to begin, we're providing you with a live look at what we think the NCAA tournament field will be when the selection committee releases its bracket tonight. That's every tournament team—selected, seeded and coupled off.
Want a more in-depth look at all 68 of these teams—their best-case scenario, who they're watching this week and their biggest weakness? Check out our live tracker, which projects how the selection committee ranks the field in 68-1 fashion.
Need to satisfy your thirst for knowing who's straddling the fence of making and missing the tournament? Head to our up-to-date Bubble Watch.
For now, here's a look at our latest projection of the field as of Sunday, 3:24 p.m. ET.
Most will probably look at the West and say it’s by far the weakest region, but that would be overlooking the great seasons that Gonzaga and New Mexico have put together. Based on the March Madness power rankings, each region is equally strong.
Michigan is getting shafted by having to play in San Jose and then Los Angeles, but these things happen when you go 6-6 with a loss to Penn State over the final six weeks of the season.
There are just two teams west of Kansas projected for a top-four seed, and four pods needing to be played in San Jose and Salt Lake City. A pair of No. 4 seeds is inevitably going to have nothing resembling home-court advantage for the first two rounds.
Despite failing to win the Big Ten tournament, Indiana remains the favorite to receive the No. 1 seed in the Midwest—though it wouldn’t be a stretch to think Ohio State could replace it by beating Wisconsin this afternoon. This is shaping up to be the only region in which each of the top four teams plays in a favorable location for the first two rounds.
Good luck figuring out which team is most likely to come out of the bottom half of the Midwest. At least for once I can’t possibly be accused of showing favoritism toward Duke by putting it in the easiest region.
In a season chock-full of upsets, Kansas surprised precisely no one by winning the Big 12 regular season and conference tournament titles for what feels like the 50th straight year. However, they will very likely have the misfortune of drawing Butler as a second-round opponent. The Bulldogs can’t be the No. 8 seed in the West or Midwest because they’ve already (memorably) played Indiana and Gonzaga this season.
Whether Miami wins the ACC championship or not, the Hurricanes will hold down the No. 2 seed in the South for a possible rematch with Michigan State in the Sweet 16.
Should this bracket miraculously hold true, you have to feel bad for both Arizona and Syracuse for drawing two of the best mid-majors in the first round. The South would be the odds-on favorite to be this year’s region in which a No. 12 plays a No. 13 in the round of 32.
By winning the Big East tournament while both Duke and Indiana failed to win their own, Louisville takes the No. 1 overall seed and a favorable path to the Final Four from Lexington to Washington D.C. to Atlanta. Pittsburgh is getting a very comfortable draw as well, especially for a No. 7 seed—neither Dayton nor D.C. is more than a five-hour drive away.
The No. 2 seed opposite of Louisville will more than likely be Ohio State, but Wisconsin could get there instead by beating the Buckeyes today. Florida will remain the No. 3 seed in the East regardless of the result of the SEC championship game, while spots No. 4 and No. 5 are still dependent upon the ACC and A-10 results.
It'd be great to see Saint Louis and New Mexico State paired up in the first round. It would be a battle between the team that has become everyone’s sleeper to go to the Final Four and the team that should be everyone’s favorite double-digit seed to make the Sweet 16.
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