With less than two weeks before the NCAA tournament field is announced on March 16, a number of teams are clinging to fading hopes of getting into the 68-team field. These teams are barely in contention for one of the at-large NCAA bids, perhaps needing to win their conference tournaments to earn an NCAA berth.
A lot of teams, including Xavier, Colorado, Oregon, Baylor, Oklahoma State, St. Joseph's, Arkansas, BYU and Pittsburgh, are on the bubble and still have work to do to secure a bid. But all those teams look as though they would be in the NCAA tournament field if the selections were made today, March 6.
Instead, the teams featured here appear to be on the outside looking in or are in serious jeopardy of dropping out. These squads need something significant to happen in their favor, and perhaps something bad to happen to others, to get them over the hump and into the NCAA field. They are still alive in their quest for an at-large berth, but barely.
The NCAA tournament projections provided by ESPN.com, CBSSports.com and USA Today helped gauge each squad's place in the pecking order. It should be noted that results in conference tournaments throughout the country will have a significant impact on teams' chances of landing an at-large berth. In other words, everything is speculative.