Planting the Seeds – Version 3

Where is your favorite team going to end up seeded in the NCAA Tournament? Bill Riccette and I will do our best to tell you in the latest installment of this ongoing series.  The basic concept is similar to any Bracketology articles you may come across.  However, we are only covering the top six lines.  And the biggest difference is that we are predicting what will happen – not creating an “if the season ended today” bracket. You can find Bill’s work at Bleacher Report right here.

Before we get to the seed lines and commentary, here’s a look at the previous versions. Check them out if you so desire.

Version 1, Part I
Version 1, Part II
Version 2

Here are the projected seed lines from Bill and me – with mine first because that’s how we’ve done it in the previous versions and because apparently, I’m not a gracious host. You’ll see today’s version followed by our January 8 rendition shown in Version 2.  If the pictures aren’t your thing, or if you want to edit the sheets in any way to build your own lines, check out the link to my Dropbox where you can download and save it for yourself.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

As you can see, Bill and I differ on where we feel a number of teams will end up on Selection Sunday. But which teams do we see most differently? Let’s take a look pictorially.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Let’s focus on the teams which we differ the most.  My questions and comments will be in the normal font, and Bill’s will be in BLUE.

Let’s start at the top with Creighton.  I’m much higher than you, and based on where you had Wichita State ranked, I assume your positioning of Creighton is due to their loss to the Shockers.

Yes, they did lose to Wichita, but this is more because of the loss to Drake.  The Jays seem to be going in the wrong direction, but I’m looking forward to the rematch with the Shockers in Omaha.

Losing to Drake wasn’t optimal for Creighton’s chances.  It cost them their small shot at a 2-seed and likely cost them a spot on the 3-line as well.  However, their rematch against Wichita is a home game.  Winning the rematch would tie the two squads in the loss column, and the Wheat Shockers still have Northern Iowa (68th at KenPom), Illinois State (75th), Indiana State (84th), and Creighton (14th) on the road.

Let’s move to NC State.  I don’t overreact to a bad loss on the road in conference and also don’t over-emphasize a big win on national TV.  This rank is because I see this team as the second-best in the ACC despite Miami’s ongoing run.  The Pack get the Canes at home on Saturday.  Your thoughts?

The loss to Wake Forest had to drop them a bit.  They just seem too inconsistent right now.  With the right draw, the Pack could be an early exit.

I think you mean with the wrong draw (always a smart ass), but I see your point.  Let’s move on to the teams where you’re higher than me.  Tell me why you think Miami will continue what they’ve done so far.

They are #3 in the RPI, five top-50 wins, are 5-0 in the ACC, and they just wiped the floor with Duke.  The Canes are a bit of a sleeper Final Four pick at this point.

Whoa!  Final Four!  I’ve seen many that are high on them, but none that high.  If that happens, I’ll tell everyone I know that Bill Riccette said it first.  Speaking of Final Four caliber teams, you have Arizona on the top line while I have them one lower.  Relative to a team like Duke, why do you lean toward the Cats?

Despite two losses, I still like Arizona as a top seed with their five top-50 wins. I know Duke has all those wins, but they really don’t look like a No. 1 seed at this point.

I hope you enjoyed this and now have a better picture of how the bracket will shake out.  Stay tuned to the blog as there may be a big announcement later in the week.

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