go to MSN.com
Found February 12, 2013 on Midwest Sports Fans:

Via Midwest Sports Fans:

There seems to be a lot of hand-wringing about this being a down year for college hoops.

If you define the season by whether or not there is a truly dominant team, I guess that’s a fair statement. If you define the season by sheer entertainment value, however, this one has been pretty darn good.

The same kinds of upsets that are celebrated during the NCAA tournament are somehow being used as an indictment of the 2012-13 season, but I have no complaints about such an unpredictable year.

Well, maybe one.

It makes putting together these bracket projections increasingly difficult, because it feels like virtually everyone lost last week. Throw in oddball profiles such as the one Virginia is building, and this becomes a tall order each Monday night.

Maybe now that we are less than five weeks from Selection Sunday, things will start to sort themselves out. But with the way this season has gone, I doubt it.

The projections below take into account all games played through Monday, Feb. 11.

Last Four In

Saint Mary’s

The Gaels just need to keep winning, and unlike many of their bubble brethren, they are doing just that.

Thursday begins a critical 10-day stretch that features home dates with Gonzaga, BYU and Creighton, with a road trip to Loyola Marymount squeezed in the middle. Going 3-1 in that stretch would give Saint Mary’s a little breathing room. Anything less and things start to get dicey.

Indiana State

Last week’s win against Creighton gave the Sycamores their fourth win against an RPI top 50 team, and they avoided another brutal loss with a one-point victory over Southern Illinois on Saturday.

The neutral court win over a Reggie Johnson-less Miami squad looks better with each passing week, but three losses against sub-150 RPI teams still have ISU in a tenuous position.

For this week, the Sycamores need to avoid road slip-ups against Missouri State and Bradley.

Baylor

At this point, the Bears have just one win against the RPI top 45, have lost three of four, and have beaten one tournament-caliber team since early December. Their November win over St. John’s is useful for bubble purposes, but that won’t be enough if they can’t start getting wins.

Baylor needs to take care of business at home against West Virginia before a tough road test at Kansas State.

Boise State

The fact that Jeff Elorriaga missed three of their conference losses helps, but he also hasn’t been particularly productive since returning. As it stands, the Broncos are below .500 in the Mountain West with road games left at New Mexico and UNLV as well as home dates with Colorado State and San Diego State.

If they can win their three other conference games and split those four, their profile would look pretty good. Anything less and they are in serious trouble.

First Five Out

Virginia

The Cavaliers have the most confounding profile I can remember in recent years (or maybe ever).

On one hand, they are 6-0 against the RPI top 100 with home wins against North Carolina and North Carolina State and road victories over Wisconsin and Maryland. On the other hand, all six losses have come to teams ranked 120th or lower in the RPI, including to sub-300 Old Dominion.

You can’t overlook the good wins or the bad losses, which lands the Cavs directly on the fence without much historical precedent for how the committee may treat them. The next few weeks will be telling with road trips to UNC and Miami as well as a home game against Duke.

Arizona State

Saturday’s home loss to Stanford pushed the Sun Devils out of the field. They have four top-100 wins at this point and just one sub-100 loss — a 17-point home defeat to DePaul. The biggest issue is that nine of their 18 Division I wins have come against sub-200 squads.

With five of ASU’s final seven games on the road, it will be an uphill battle for Herb Sendek’s club. The Sun Devils certainly can’t afford to lose at Utah this week and would be well-served to steal one at Colorado over the weekend.

St. John’s

The Red Storm have won six of their past eight games, including wins over Notre Dame and UConn. However, nonconference losses to San Francisco and UNC-Asheville loom large, as does a disappointing home loss to Rutgers. Similar to ASU, St. John’s has racked up seven of its 15 wins over sub-190 teams.

The remaining Big East schedule will tell the tale, with four games against teams in the RPI top 50 (at Louisville, Pittsburgh, at Notre Dame, Marquette) and a road trip to Providence sprinkled in.

Villanova

After a home loss to Providence, the Wildcats held serve last week by beating DePaul and South Florida, but neither win really moves the needle for their NCAA hopes.

Victories over Louisville and Syracuse obviously hold a lot of weight, but their next best wins are against St. John’s and St. Joseph’s. Unfortunately, those are somewhat offset by an 18-point loss to Columbia and the fact they were swept by Providence.

This is a huge week for ’Nova with road trips to Cincinnati and UConn on tap.

Massachusetts

The Minutemen are quietly 6-3 in the A-10, with two of those losses coming by a combined four points. They are also 6-2 in true road games, but the wins at Northeastern and La Salle are the only ones that hold much weight. UMass is 5-5 against the RPI top 100, but losses against Tennessee in Puerto Rico and at home vs. George Washington certainly don’t help the cause.

Much like Villanova, the Minutemen have a pair of important games this week as they travel to VCU before hosting Temple on Saturday.

Here is how the bids broke out by conference:

Big East (7): Cincinnati, Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, Syracuse

Big Ten (7): Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Ohio State, Wisconsin

Big 12 (6): Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State

Atlantic 10 (5): Butler, La Salle, Saint Louis, Temple, VCU

Mountain West (5): Boise State, Colorado State, New Mexico, San Diego State, UNLV

Pac-12 (4): Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, UCLA

ACC (4): Duke, Miami (FL), North Carolina, North Carolina State

SEC (4): Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, Ole Miss

Missouri Valley (3): Creighton, Indiana State, Wichita State

West Coast (2): Gonzaga, Saint Mary’s

America East: Vermont

Atlantic Sun: Florida Gulf Coast

Big Sky: Montana

Big South: UNC-Asheville

Big West: Long Beach State

Colonial: Northeastern

Conference USA: Memphis

Horizon: Valparaiso

Ivy: Princeton

MAAC: Niagara

MAC: Akron

MEAC: North Carolina Central

Northeast: Bryant

Ohio Valley: Belmont

Patriot: Bucknell

Southern: Davidson

Southland: Stephen F. Austin

Summit: Western Illinois

Sun Belt: Middle Tennessee

SWAC: Southern

WAC: Louisiana Tech

THE BACKYARD
Broncos News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

RUMORS & GOSSIP

Joe Torre: I 'feel terrible' for forgetting to thank Steinbrenner

Former New York Yankees manager Joe Torre admitted he screwed up during his 28-minute Hall of Fame induction speech, because he failed to thank former Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. “I missed thanking the most obvious guy in the world when you’re talking about the Yankees,” a visibly shaken Torre told the New York Daily News. “I mentioned George, but my plan was to thank...
Via Intrigue Sports
10 hours ago

Jeff Gordon wins record fifth Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captured his record 5th victory at the Brickyard 400 on Sunday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Via Gamedayr
15 hours ago

Red Sox reportedly pursuing Matt Kemp

After a move that sent Jake Peavy to the San Francisco Giants on Saturday afternoon, the Boston Red Sox are continuing to listen to more offers as the trade deadline approaches. The Sox acquired right handed pitcher Heath Hembree and lefty Edwin Escobar from the Giants. Hembree was the No.7 ranked prospect in the Giants’ minor league system while Escobar was their No. 2 prospect...
Via The Sideline
16 hours ago

LeBron announces 'new' Cavs jersey number on Instagram

LeBron James announced on his Instagram that he will be going back to number 23 with the Cavaliers
Via Gamedayr
19 hours ago

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette flubs headline about Penn State hiring

We’re not sure how this got through without anyone at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wondering if this headline could be received poorly, but the paper probably wants this one back right about now. No name. Just woman. pic.twitter.com/NdAQWvFAUi — Virginia Montanez (@JanePitt) July 27, 2014 @JanePitt Maybe the future bylines for PG writers should be WOMAN (with name then underneath...
Via College Spun
19 hours ago

Cristiano Ronaldo denies hiring Lil Wayne as manager

Popular hip-hop star Jay-Z officially became a sports agent last summer, and has already landed well-known players such as Robinson Cano and Kevin Durant as clients. He’s already had success with his new business, Roc Nation Sports, helping Cano land a huge 10-year, $240 million contract during free agency last year. Apparently Jay-Z isn’t the only rapper trying to get in the...
Via NESN.com
20 hours ago

Giants CB learns unusual skill to help with interceptions

PHOTO COURTESY: IM MCISAAC/NEWSDAY Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara learned to juggle this off season.  He didn’t do this so he could entertain house guests; he learned in an effort to perfect his skills on defense. Part of Amukamara’s offseason workout was to juggle which he thinks will boost his interception numbers.  The fourth year cornerback says his new skill helps...
Via New York Sports-Kings
1 day ago

Lakers hire Byron Scott as coach

In a less-than-surprising move, the Los Angeles Lakers have hired Byron Scott to be their new head coach. As the only remaining NBA team without a coach, the Lakers were facing scrutiny to get something done. With Scott now on board, they can move on to their offseason program and start to implement his philosophy on the court.  Lakers have agreed to terms with Byron Scott to be...
Via Sportsnaut
1 day ago

CJ Spiller likely to be popular trade target?

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports mentions in his Bills training camp report that he expects Buffalo to field calls for one of their running backs as injuries start piling up. According to La Canfora, “Buffalo has more backs than it needs” and specifically mentions that RB C.J. Spiller “could be the odd man out.” La Canfora points to the fact that Spiller is entering the...
Via NFL Trade Rumors
1 day ago

Marcus Mariota's course load will make you laugh

Marcus Mariota could have left Oregon for the NFL following last season. The Ducks redshirt junior quarterback would have likely been a first-round draft pick. He could be making millions of dollars as a professional athlete.  The dual threat opted to return to Eugene for at least one more season. Life won’t be too bad for the Heisman contender, either. He’s only taking two...
Via College Spun
1 day ago
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.