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Bracket Projections - Mar 16 (PM Update - FINAL)

3/16/2008
Here is my final bracket projection. Below, I ran the Colton Index-based seedings on all of the remaining 8 scenarios, but I doubt the Committee has built that much flexibility into the brackets. So I'm putting my stake in the ground with a bracket projecting that Wisconsin and Arkansas win (then averaging the rank between the outcome of Texas vs Kansas). If Georgia and/or Illinois win (go Illini!), they will simply replace the last two teams in.

Just like every other year, I fully expect that I will finish the worst amongst all of the bracketologists. However, I'd caution against thinking this is a black mark against my rating system or something. I'm simply churning out a data-driven brackets that is based on the things the Committee says to value, mostly body-of-work. And more importantly, I don't rely on the RPI at all. Where the actual seedings differ from mine will highlight exactly where the Committee veered from this consistent, objective approach and/or relied on misleading information from the RPI or any of its subcomponents.

Final Bracket Projections
1: North Carolina, UCLA, Memphis, Tennessee
2: Kansas, Texas, Duke, Wisconsin
3: Georgetown, Stanford, Drake, Washington St
4: Butler, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Xavier
5: Southern California, Michigan St, Clemson, Marquette
6: Connecticut, Notre Dame, Indiana, Vanderbilt
7: Kent St, Purdue, Oklahoma, West Virginia
8: Texas A&M, Gonzaga, Arizona, Miami (FL)
9: Arkansas, Baylor, BYU, Davidson
10: Arizona St, Oregon, Illinois St, St. Mary's
11: Villanova, Kansas St, Mississippi St, Florida St
12: UNLV, Ohio State, Temple, Western Kentucky
13: Oral Roberts, Cornell, George Mason, Siena
14: CS Fullerton, Boise St, San Diego, Belmont
15: UMBC, Winthrop, Portland St, American
16: Austin Peay, UT Arlington, Mt St. Mary's, Coppin St, Miss Valley St

Last 4 In: Kansas St, Mississippi St, Florida St*, Ohio State*
First 4 Out: Syracuse, Saint Joseph's, Massachusetts, Dayton
Next 4 Out: Creighton, Mississippi, Virginia Tech, Kentucky
* Potentially replaced by Illinois (go Illini!) and/or Georgia

I think it's safe to say the teams most as risk are Florida St, Arizona St, Ohio St, Oregon and Villanova probably are at the most risk (from highest risk to lowest risk), likely to be replaced by Saint Joseph's, Virginia Tech, South Alabama, Kentucky and (grasping for a fifth team) Syracuse or Mississippi. I fully expect Florida St and Arizona St to be out of the field, despite the fact they deserve to be in.

If you were able to factor in the results of the remaining three games completely, my approach would come up with the following seeds based on the 8 potential scenarios below.

Scenario A: Georgia, Kansas, Illinois win
Scenario B: Georgia, Kansas, Wisconsin win
Scenario C: Arkansas, Kansas, Illinois win
Scenario D: Arkansas, Kansas, Wisconsin win
Scenario E: Georgia, Texas, Illinois win
Scenario F: Georgia, Texas, Wisconsin win
Scenario G: Arkansas, Texas, Illinois win
Scenario H: Arkansas, Texas, Wisconsin win

TeamA BCDE FGH
North Carolina11 111111
UCLA111 11111
Memphis111 11111
Tennessee11 112222
Kansas222 22222
Texas222 21111
Duke222 22222
Wisconsin32 323232
Georgetown23 232323
Stanford333 33333
Drake333 33333
Washington St33 333333
Butler444 44444
Pittsburgh44 444444
Louisville44 444444
Xavier444 44444
Southern California5 5555555
Clemson555 55555
Michigan St66 666565
Marquette55 555555
Connecticut55 555656
Notre Dame66 666666
Indiana666 66666
Vanderbilt77 667766
Kent St667 76677
Purdue777 78787
Oklahoma777 77777
West Virginia77 777878
Texas A&M88 887777
Gonzaga888 88888
Arizona888 88888
Miami (FL)88 888888
Arkansas1111 99111199
BYU999 99999
Baylor999 99999
Davidson999 999109
Arizona St99 101099910
Oregon1010 101010101010
Illinois St1010 101010101010
St. Mary's1010 101010101010
Villanova1010 111110101111
Kansas St1111 111111111111
Mississippi St 1111 1111
Florida St1111 111111111111
UNLV111112 1211111212
Ohio State 12 12 12 12
Temple1212 121212121212
Western Kentucky1212 121212121212
Oral Roberts1212 121312121213
Illinois12 13 12 13
Cornell1313 131313131313
George Mason1313 131313131313
Siena131313 1313131313
Georgia1313 1313
CS Fullerton1414 141414141414
Boise St1414 141414141414
San Diego1414 141414141414
Belmont1414 141414141414
UMBC151515 1515151515
Winthrop1515 151515151515
Portland St1515 151515151515
American1515 151515151515
Austin Peay1616 161616161616
UT Arlington1616 161616161616
Mt St. Mary's1616 161616161616
Coppin St1616 161616161616
Miss Valley St1616 161616161616

You'll notice some flip-flopping of seeds based on the last three games, but I think these are most likely already set in stone. Texas would be worthy as a 1 seed if they beat Kansas, but Kansas wouldn't have enough to overcome Tennessee if they beat Texas. It's doubtful that the Committee has this type of contingency in place. They either the winner of the Texas/Kansas game as a 1 seed, the loser as a 2 seed. Or they have both as a 2 seed and Tennessee locked in as a 1 seed. The same goes for Wisconsin, who could move ahead of Georgetown as a 2 seed with a win over Illinois. I'm guessing they already have Wisconsin as a 2 or a 3 (probably a 3) and the outcome of today's game won't change it.

Once the brackets come out, I'll do some additional analysis on teams that were overseeded and underseeded relative to my projections.

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