go to MSN.com
Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 11/20/14

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. However, if you define the season by sheer entertainment value, this one has been pretty damn 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 since it feels like virtually everyone lost last week. Throw in oddball profiles like 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, February 11th. MIDWEST (INDIANAPOLIS) SOUTH (DALLAS) Dayton – March 22nd/24th Lexington – March 21st/23rd 1) Indiana (21-3) 1) Miami, FL (19-3) 16) Western Illinois (18-5) 16) NC Central (17-7)/Southern (17-8) 8) Oklahoma (16-7) 8) Illinois (17-8) 9) Saint Louis (18-5) 9) VCU (19-5) San Jose – March 21st/23rd Austin – March 22nd/24th 5) San Diego State (18-5) 5) Ohio State (17-6) 12) Belmont (20-5) 12) Middle Tennessee (22-4) 4) Pittsburgh (20-5) 4) Kansas State (19-5) 13) Akron (19-4) 13) Louisiana Tech (21-3) Kansas City – March 22nd/24th San Jose – March 21st/23rd 6) Cincinnati (18-6) 6) Notre Dame (19-5) 11) Memphis (20-3) 11) Iowa State (16-7) 3) Kansas (20-4) 3) New Mexico (20-4) 14) Northeastern (17-8) 14) Montana (18-4) Lexington – March 21st/23rd Philadelphia – March 22nd/24th 7) North Carolina State (17-7) 7) UCLA (18-6) 10) Colorado (16-7) 10) Wichita State (20-5) 2) Florida (19-3) 2) Syracuse (20-3) 15) Florida Gulf Coast (18-8) 15) Vermont (16-7) EAST (WASHINGTON, DC) WEST (LOS ANGELES) Auburn Hills – March 21st/23rd Philadelphia – March 22nd/24th 1) Michigan (21-3) 1) Duke (21-2) 16) Niagara (14-11)/UNC-Asheville (15-10) 16) Bryant (16-6) 8) Creighton (20-5) 8) Colorado State (19-4) 9) Kentucky (17-6) 9) Missouri (17-6) Kansas City – March 22nd/24th Austin – March 22nd/24th 5) Oklahoma State (17-5) 5) Georgetown (18-4) 12) Boise State (16-7)/Saint Mary’s (21-4) 12) Baylor (15-8)/Indiana State (16-8) 4) Butler (20-4) 4) Wisconsin (17-7) 13) Bucknell (20-4) 13) Stephen F. Austin (20-2) Dayton – March 22nd/24th Salt Lake City – March 21st/23rd 6) Minnesota (17-7) 6) Marquette (17-6) 11) North Carolina (16-7) 11) Temple (16-7) 3) Louisville (19-5) 3) Gonzaga (23-2) 14) Davidson (17-7) 14) Valparaiso (19-6) Salt Lake City – March 21st/23rd Auburn Hills – March 21st/23rd 7) UNLV (18-6) 7) Oregon (19-5) 10) La Salle (16-6) 10) Mississippi (18-5) 2) Arizona (20-3) 2) Michigan State (20-4) 15) Princeton (11-8) 15) Long Beach State (14-9) ———————– 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 Top 50 win, and they avoided another brutal loss with a one-point victory over Southern Illinois over the weekend. The neutral court win over a Reggie Johnson-less Miami squad looks better with each passing week, but three sub-150 losses 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 beating people. Baylor needs to take care of business at home versus West Virginia before a tough road test at the Octagon against K-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 league 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 the 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, including a sub-300 loss to Old Dominion. You can’t overlook the good wins or the bad losses, which lands them 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, which is a 17-point home defeat to DePaul. The biggest issue is that nine of their 18 D-1 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 last eight games, including wins over Notre Dame and UConn. However, non-conference 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 versus the Top 100, but losses against Tennessee in Puerto Rico and at home versus 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 ********** Follow me on Twitter (@andybottoms) for more thoughts on college hoops. The post NCAA Tournament Bracket Projections: February 12th appeared first on Midwest Sports Fans.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cavs beat Hawks without Kyrie Irving, take 2-0 lead

John Wall tells All-NBA Team voters to ‘keep sleeping’

Minor League team cancels 'A-Rod Juice Box Night'

Dolphins teammate on Dion Jordan: It’s a bad situation

Texans reportedly the favorite to be featured on ‘Hard Knocks’

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Goodell will not recuse himself from Brady appeal

Will Smith suspended eight games for 'foreign substance'

Report: Kobe Bryant likely to retire following next season

Don Shula named in painkiller lawsuit from former NFL players

Kyrie Irving questionable for Game 2 versus Atlanta

Michael Sam signs with CFL’s Montreal Alouettes

The Los Angeles Angels are finally finding their groove

Re-evaluating all 30 MLB teams at the quarter mark

Is virtual reality training the next leap forward for football?

Warriors a very shaky 2-0 against the Rockets

NFL icon Bud Grant zings Pats with Deflategate joke on Twitter

RG3 announces birth daughter's birth on social media

Don't listen to Nick Saban, the bowl system is just fine

MLB scores partial victory in minor league wage lawsuits

Ranking the NBA Playoffs' most significant injuries

WATCH: Will Smith ejected for foreign substance on arm

Guy behind NFL's social media trolling of Pats is a Jets fan?

In defense of 76ers general manager Sam Hinkie

College Basketball 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!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
RUMORS & GOSSIP

Cavs beat Hawks without Kyrie Irving, take 2-0 lead

ATLANTA — LeBron James scored 30 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers took total command of the Eastern Conference final even without injured star Kyrie Irving, routing the Atlanta Hawks 94-82 on Friday night for a 2-0 lead with the series heading to Ohio. The Cavaliers made it a blowout with a dominating third quarter. James scored 11 points, the Hawks shot just 32 percent (7 of...
Via NESN.com
8 hours ago

John Wall tells All-NBA Team voters to ‘keep sleeping’

The All-NBA teams were announced on Thursday and they included names you would expect to see like Stephen Curry, James Harden, and Russell Westbrook. Among those absent was John Wall, who had a message for voters. More Motivation…Keep Sleeping !! — John Wall (@JohnWall) May 21, 2015 Harden and Curry were absolutely deserving of the...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
11 hours ago

Minor League team cancels 'A-Rod Juice Box Night'

Alex Rodriguez is often the target of slander and jokes. On Friday, it was the Charlotte Stone Crabs, a minor league affiliate of the Rays, who had the Yankees designated hitter in their sights. The Stone Crabs planned to hand out the above pictured juice box which reads “The Sports Drink. 100 % Juiced. Side...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
9 hours ago

Dolphins teammate on Dion Jordan: It’s a bad situation

Earlier this offseason, the NFL announced that it had suspended Miami Dolphins pass rusher Dion Jordan for the entire 2015 season for another violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. That announcement came as the Dolphins were reportedly involved in trade discussions surrounding the enigmatic former No. 3 overall pick. To say that Jordan’s early-NFL career hasn’t...
Via Sportsnaut
13 hours ago

Texans reportedly the favorite to be featured on ‘Hard Knocks’

The Houston Texans are the favorites to be the subject of the upcoming edition of HBO’s “Hard Knocks,” according to a report. The Houston Chronicle’s John McClain reported that the Texans were one of the finalists for the show along with the Redskins and Bills. A separate report said the Redskins do not want to...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
14 hours ago

Report: Goodell will not recuse himself from Brady appeal

Roger Goodell wants to be the judge, jury and executioner in Tom Brady’s suspension appeal. The NFL rejected the NFL Players Association’s request that Goodell recuse himself as arbitrator in Brady’s appeal, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reported Friday. NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said Friday on ESPN that the union would “increase the volume” of their request...
Via NESN.com
15 hours ago

Will Smith suspended eight games for 'foreign substance'

Well, that didn’t take long. Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Will Smith received MLB’s punishment just one day after getting tossed for having a “foreign substance” on his arm on Thursday night. Per MLB Communications, Smith will receive an eight-game ban: Brewers pitcher Will Smith has received an 8-game suspension for having a foreign substance on his arm during last night's...
Via Sportsnaut
16 hours ago

Report: Kobe Bryant likely to retire following next season

The last few years haven’t exactly gone according to plan for one of the greatest basketball players to set foot on a court. And it now appears that the end of Kobe Bryant’s tremendous NBA career is nearing. Bryant apparently told Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak that the 2015-2016 season will be his last in the NBA. “He has indicated to me that this is it...
Via Sportsnaut
17 hours ago

Don Shula named in painkiller lawsuit from former NFL players

Hundreds of former NFL players have filed another lawsuit alleging that doctors, trainers and medical staffs from all 32 NFL teams pumped players full of painkillers to keep them on the field without taking their long-term health into consideration. A similar lawsuit that was filed last year around this time was dismissed in December after...Read More
Via Larry Brown Sports
19 hours ago

Kyrie Irving questionable for Game 2 versus Atlanta

The Cleveland Cavaliers announced on Friday that point guard Kyrie Irving skipped the morning shootaround for Friday’s Game 2 versus the Atlanta Hawks in order to get further tests on his injured left knee. The team listed his availability for Friday night’s game as questionable. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst is hearing that the Cavs are ordering an MRI on his knee to find out...
Via Waiting For Next Year
20 hours 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.