The calendar has flipped to February. This means that Selection Sunday is getting closer. The battle for at-large spots and seeding starts to heat up. Discussions about which teams should sneak in can have no resolution. Luckily, LWOS is here to help with that. Bracketology 3.0 is here. Our previous bracket can be found here for comparison.
Here is the third edition of the bracket.
LWOS Bracketology 3.0
The Big Ten continues to lead the conference count in Bracketology 3.0 with 11 teams represented this time. Minnesota has finally snuck in. The Big East has the next highest total with six teams. The Big 12, Pac 12 and SEC each have five teams represented. The ACC continues to show a lack of strength, having just four teams in the latest bracket. The Atlantic 10, American and WCC continue to represent mid-major teams, having three teams each in this bracket.
Keep an eye on the Atlantic 10. Rhode Island has entered the field, and there are a few other teams that could make bubble pushes. Richmond and Saint Louis are still hanging in the picture, while Duquesne sits just on the peripheral.
Baylor holds onto its spot as the best team in the field. The Bears have yet to take a conference loss and have earned the right to be called the best team in the country. Scott Drew has a national championship contender in Waco.
The Maryland Terrapins made a jump onto the three-line in this region. The Terrapins have shaken off their narrative of not being able to win on the road after victories at Northwestern, Indiana, and Illinois.
Penn State currently sits as a five seed, but the Nittany Lions will push for a protected seed as the season continues. If they can snag a four seed or better, it would be the highest slot in program history.
Gonzaga remains as our second top seed. The Bulldogs survived an upset scare against an upstart conference foe in San Francisco. Mark Few’s crew has arguably its toughest remaining game up next, a road tilt at rival Saint Mary’s.
Northern Iowa is the ten seed in this region, the highest-ranked mid-major outside of Gonzaga, San Diego State and Dayton. The Panthers are dangerous and have the potential for a surprise run.
Kansas holds firm at our third top seed in the Midwest Region. The Big 12 may only have five teams, but two of them hold number one seeds. The rematch between the Jayhawks and Baylor on February 22nd may decide who is the overall number one seed.
Colorado sits at a five seed in this part of the bracket. The Buffaloes could be one of the best teams in the country if they played more consistently. Still, they can still land as a protected seed if they can finish strong.
Creighton is a six seed here, making a huge jump after beating Villanova on the road. The Bluejays quietly have a chance to take the Big East regular-season title. Greg McDermott is doing a fantastic coaching job this season.
San Diego State is our final top seed, keeping all the number one seeds the same from our last version. It will be interesting to see what the committee does if the Aztecs and Gonzaga both end up on the top line. One of those teams may be forced to play on the east coast depending on the overall seeding of the top four teams.
Dayton comes in as the second seed, making this a mid-major heavy region. It would only be fitting if San Diego State and Dayton played in the Elite Eight for the right to go to Atlanta. Both teams are having amazing seasons and giving mid-major basketball a name.
As mentioned above, Rhode Island is the biggest riser in Bracketology 3.0. The Rams have shot up to a nine seed after being one of the last teams out previously. Rhode Island still has a chance to dethrone Dayton for the Atlantic 10 title.
This is the time of year where the microscope hovers over the bubble. Every tidbit of information gets analyzed to decide the final teams that make it in. The last four teams in are Stanford, Memphis, Oklahoma, and Xavier. The Musketeers’ huge road win over Seton Hall put them back into the field for now.
The first four teams out are Cincinnati, Mississippi State, Georgetown, and North Carolina State. Keep an eye out for Cincinnati. The Bearcats are making a push in the American Athletic Conference and are playing like a tournament team right now.
LWOS Bracketology 3.0
This concludes the third edition of LWOS Bracketology. Take a look at the bracket and fill it out. Let us know who should be in or out, and keep an eye out for the next edition in a few weeks.