Sunday, February 19, 2006


Bracket Projection for Sunday, 19 February

Shakeups abound in this week's bracket.

Short Summary

Syracuse and Maryland are out, so is Miami, who has pretty much collapsed since their inclusion last week. Cincinnati comes in after their win at Syracuse. They're listed as a 9 seed in the bracket, but they're a true 10, who switched places with Kentucky to prevent early conference rematches. Arkansas also enters as a 12, thanks to their win over Florida.

Gonzaga moves up to a 2 seed, replacing Illinois. The Illini drop to a four, while Iowa and Ohio State are now on the 3 line. It was difficult to shake up the 2 and 3 lines anymore than I did thanks to a whole slew of teams losing yesterday (Pitt, West Virginia, Florida, Tennessee).

Some bubble teams can breathe a little easier now. Alabama's win at Tennessee shows how impressive they've been after losing Chuck Davis. Kansas' demolition of Missouri shows how far the Jayhawks have come in the three weeks since they lost in Columbia. Kentucky's win at South Carolina puts the Wildcats in better position.

Others showed they still have a little work to do. Maryland struggled to beat Georgia Tech at home, not a good omen and a big reason why they're out. Syracuse beat Louisville, but it was too little too late (for this week anyway) after they got blown out by Cincy. Indiana is barely hanging on as an 11. Cal had a good win against Arizona Thursday, then lost to ASU Saturday in double OT. Arizona-Stanford this afternoon could very well be an elimination game (if the Pac 10 tournament wasn't going to be very wide open).

BracketBusters impact
Yesterday's BracketBusters had a little bit of an impact on the bracket, but not as much as I thought. George Mason and Missouri State's wins moved them up. Bucknell losing at Northern Iowa in double OT moved them down, but that's because of other movement in the 7-10 lines. (UNI didn't move up at all, again more of a function of what other teams are doing). Wichita State also wasn't hurt terribly by their home loss to George Mason. Utah State's comeback win over Northwestern State dropped the Demons down a line and kept the Aggies in as an at-large.

Last Four In

First Four Out

Next Four Out
Florida State
Louisiana Tech

League Breakdown

8 Big East
7 Big Ten
5 Missouri Valley
4 Pac-10
3 Big XII
2 Colonial
2 Conference USA
2 Mountain West
2 Western Athletic

Banana Peel List

America East
Albany still holds a game and a half lead on Binghamton. The two won't play unless they meet in the conference tournament.

Atlantic Sun
Lipscomb and Belmont are tied for the league lead right now. Belmont has the automatic bid for the week based on their better RPI. East Tennessee, Gardner-Webb, and Florida Atlantic all are a game back. Watch out for the Bulldogs, who are on a roll, beating ETSU, Belmont, and Lipscomb in the past week.

Atlantic 10
George Washington still has a three game lead on Charlotte. Time is running out on Xavier, Temple, and LaSalle.

Big Sky
Northern Arizona continues to hold a two and a half game lead on Montana. The two won't meet again unless it's in the Big Sky tourney.

Big South
Winthrop has a half-game lead on Birmingham-Southern are tied at the top of the league. The two meet Saturday to close out the regular season and determine the top seed in the Big South tournament.

Big West
Pacific still leads Cal-Irvine by a half game. The Tigers have three games in hand on the Anteaters. The two won't meet again unless it's in Anaheim in the Big West tournament.

George Mason took down Wichita State yesterday. Now they have to see if they can carry that momentum into Hempstead for their meeting with Hofstra (2.5 back) Thursday. UNCW is a game behind.

Milwaukee leads Butler by only a half-game. Losing to Missouri State killed the Panthers faint at-large hopes. UWM wraps the regular season up Tuesday as they host Detroit. Butler hosts Youngstown State and visits Detroit. It will be a very close finish.

Ivy Group
Penn smoked Princeton on Valentine's day. The Tigers then beat Cornell in 2 OTs before losing to Columbia. Quakers have a two game lead over the Tigers right now.

Metro Atlantic
Iona continues to lead Manhattan by a game. This one will go right down to the league tournament.

Akron and Kent State are tied atop the East. Zips have this week's automatic bid thanks to a slighly better overall record. Miami is just a game out. Akron plays in Oxford Wednesday. Miami then travels to Kent on Saturday. Stay tuned.

Delaware State leads Coppin State by two games.

IUPUI continues to hold a two game lead on Oral Roberts.

Fairleigh Dickinson now has a three game lead on Central Connecticut State and Monmouth. Knights play the Hawks twice one week, however.

Ohio Valley

Murray State leads Samford by three and a half games.

Bucknell leads Lehigh by a game and a half. The two meet Wednesday in Lewisberg.

Davidson moves back into a tie for first with Georgia Southern in the South division. Elon leads the North Division with an identical 9-4 mark. The Wildcats and Eagles meet for the South title Tuesday night. Davidson holds the automatic bid for the week thanks to their RPI.

Northwestern State leads Sam Houston State and McNeese State by three games.

Southern leads Grambling by two games. The two won't meet again unless it's in the SWAC tournament.

Sun Belt
Western Kentucky leads South Alabama by two games.

West Coast
Gonzaga all but wrapped up the regular season with their win at Loyola Marymount yesterday,

Enjoy the week!

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