nsucurrent.com March 17, 2018

College Basketball Bracketology and Selection Sunday Notes

12 March 2018, 06:52 | Nina Perez

Alabama gets a No. 9 seed, will face Virginia Tech

Kansas Devonte Graham puts up a shot during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Kansas State in the semifinals of the Big 12 conference tournament in Kansas City Mo. Friday

Some of the biggest names in college basketball were mentioned as allegedly being involved in improper benefit cases.

As Selection Sunday approaches, there's much curiosity over how the process will play out - for fans, players, and even coaches like TCU's Jamie Dixon - over just exactly how the cards will be shuffled due to a tweak in the system this year. By early evening, there will be a 68-team bracket.

The committee has access to team sheets with RPI information and a breakdown of results separated into four quadrants.

The bubble always sparks debate. But this year it's flat-out fascinating.

Kansas has dominated the Big 12 overall with 10 tournament titles since 1997, but Iowa State has won three of the previous four conference tournament titles. It has a 3-3 record in Quadrant 2 contests, and its only loss in either Quadrant 3 or 4 was at Iowa State, which is eight spots away from qualifying as a Quadrant 2 game. Their only Quadrant 1 wins are at Western Kentucky and Murray State. That doesn't move the proverbial needle.

St. Bonaventure is making its seventh NCAA Tournament appearance, its first since 2012. Other short odds to win are Duke (6/1), Virginia (6/1) and Michigan State (15/2). Oklahoma and Arizona State started so well, but finished so poorly, limping to the finish. The Cavaliers will get to finish region play in Atlanta. There are also a host of other high-profile power-conference programs on the bubble, teams such as Syracuse and Louisville, that can be as easily argued for or against.

Davidson beat Rhode Island in the A-10 tournament championship game Sunday to steal an at-large bid. With Chris Mack as head coach, the Musketeers have made it as far as the round of eight once in seven tries. But among their three Q1 victories are a road conquest of Kansas and neutral-site win over Xavier - the Jayhawks and Musketeers could be No. 1 regional seeds. With the show moving off network television for the first time in over three decades, executives can expect more of the same this year.

The last four at-large teams, as well as teams, seeded 65 through 68 will play in the First Four games on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Here's a look at the updated results for the Big 12 tournament as games go final, as well as a look at the quarterfinal schedule on Thursday. They improved to 17-14 the following year and have won at least 25 games each of the past two seasons. Nevada, one of the teams experts felt Seton Hall was on equal footing with, bowing out in the Mountain West Tournament semifinals helps, too. It may not be enough for a two seed, but it's close. Xavier is the one seed.

Auburn, fresh from its first Southeastern Conference regular-season title since 1999, ended a 15-year NCAA Tournament drought.

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