Many teams moved up, some moved out but there is much work still to be done. Selection Sunday is in just 15 days. Ive moved the smaller conference projections back to the 29th to be more thorough.
Solid: Miami, Duke, North Carolina, Virginia
Work to do: Syracuse, Notre Dame, Pitt, Clemson
Skinny on the ACC: Im sorry, Im not comfortable yet moving Notre Dame to the Solid line yet but provided they don’t take a pratfall in a trap game at Florida State they should move up. Clemson is getting way too noisy to ignore but they still have a ton of work to do. Syracuse is not helping itself after getting shamefully housed at home against Pitt who is edging closer and closer to being safe.
Key Game: North Carolina State at Syracuse 2p (ACCNet). The Orange must win on senior day to avoid deepening bubble trouble
Projected Bids: 6
Conference Class- Major
Solid: VCU, Dayton, St. Joes
Work to do: GW, St. Bonnies
The A-10 Spec is: The Flyers avoided a really bad loss at St. Louis and though have been looking very wobbly are safe. St Joes bounced back to whip UMass and should be ok. Im still sticking with the Rams being good to go. Though they have a big test against GW who is loking to move up themselves. The Bonnies will get shipped from the sheet if they get caught looking past a middling UMass to a home showdown with St. Joes.
Key Game: VCU at George Washington Today 12:30 (NBCSN) The Rams and Colonials will feel so much safer with a win
Projected Bids: 4
Work to do: Temple, UConn, Tulsa, Houston
All-American Spec: Cincy has been resting for a showdown of sorts with probation bound but still ranked SMU. Temple had its chance to really lock itself in but got poleaxed in Tulsa making the conference standings even messier as no fewer than 6 teams have 10 conference wins. Though they are still behind the Mustangs and Owls in the standings, go ahead and
Key Games: Houston at UConn Sunday 1:00 (CBSSN) An intriguing game between a pair of 10 win conference wins, the winner gets a resume boosting win
Projected Bids: 3
Solid: Xavier, Villanova
Work to do: Providence, Seton Hall, Creighton, Butler
Big East Skinny: The Muskies at home have always been a bugaboo for #1 teams as Villanova can now attest. But those teams are way safe. Im not sold on Seton Hall especially after they did everything that they could to lose in NYC yet escaped with a win. Creighton is out though they are 4th in the conference, have played abysmally a that win over X is looking more and more fluky. Butler and Providence hanging in and hanging on but need to continue to stack wins ahead of the Big East tourney at MSG.
Key Game: Xavier at Seton Hall, Sunday 12:30 (FS1) Sky high after their win over #1, The Muskies better be careful. The Pirates would be make a move to solid with a statement win
Projected bids: 4
Solid: Maryland, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan State
Work to do: Wisconsin, Purdue, Michigan
The word on the Big Ten is: Just as fast as the Bucks were on the list, they got housed at home by Michigan State and are finished. Wisconsin and Michigan might be playing each other for a berth on Sunday. Purdue is closing in on moving up but we’ll wait till their next game to decide on that, speaking of which…
Key Game: Maryland at Purdue Today 4:00 (ESPN) If the Boilers hold serve at home, they move up.
Projected Bids: 6
Solid: Kansas, West Virginia, Iowa State, Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma
Work to do: Texas Tech
Skinny from the heartland: Its moving day in the Big 12 (minus two) the Cyclones, Horns and Bears have done enough. Now its down to Texas Tech who’s scrappy bunch will have to deal with Kansas at Allen.
Key Game: Oklahoma at Texas Wednesday 9:00 (ESPN) Heated rivals go head up for better seeding in Kansas City
Projected Bids: 6
Conference Class-Mid Major
Solid: Wichita State
Work to do: Evansville
Missouri Valley Skinny: The Shockers finish the season today and need no pratfalls between now and next Sunday to lock their berth down. They just don’t have the numbers to get in
Key Game: Illinois State at Wichita State Today 2:00 (Fox Regional) The Shockers have clinched the #1 seed and the Redbirds need to win to stay as far opposite of them to set up a MVC title showdown.
Projected Bids: 1
Solid: Oregon, Arizona, Utah, Cal, Colorado
Work to do: USC, Oregon State, Washington
Spec from the left coast: The Buffs stunned Arizona and gets their moving papers. USC is squandering chance after chance to go solid and they remain stuck at 19 wins after getting housed at the Farm, the poor Huskies got the shaft after a super kind clock let the Beavers steal a buzzer beating win. Ill put both teams on the working list for now
Key Games: USC at Cal Sunday 8:00 (FS1) The strains of Try Again by Aalyiah are wafting through as the Trojans have another shot at a statement game
Projected Bids: 5
Solid: UK, Texas A&M , South Carolina
Work to do: Florida, Vanderbilt, Ole Miss
Spec is Down South: Ive grown tired of giving LSU a free pass because I think Ben Simmons is the next great player. After another shameful housing at Arkansas they are gone. Alabama had a chance to make a statement but got thrashed at UK, they too are gone. Ole Miss and Florida are in the danger zone themselves
Key Game: Florida at LSU Tonight 8:30 (ESPN2) The Gators are sitting on the fence line and losing to the fading Tigers would be fatal.
Projected Bids: 4
Conference Class- Mid Major
Solid: Gonzaga, Saint Mary’s
Work to do: BYU
West Coast Spec: The Gaels and Bulldogs are good to go. BYU must win tonight and get to the WCC finale to stay in the conversation, periodd
Key Game: Gonzaga at BYU Saturday 8p (ESPN2) The Coogs need to win here and the Bulldogs are guarding their fragile yet intact hopes
Projected Bids: 2
There are others in the mix to be sure. Teams from the always dangerous Colonial and Big South always are in the mix and can send multiple teams. Of course the champions from the following conferences get an automatic bid: Amer. East, Atlantic Sun, Big Sky, Big West, Conference USA, Horizon, Ivy, MAC, MAAC, MEAC, Mountain West, Northeast, Ohio Valley, Patriot, Southern, Southland, Sun Belt, Summit, and SWAC and Western Athletic projected bids from these conferences will be posted here starting February 29th
Since this is still early spec, nothing here is solid and we haven’t even brought up the possibility of upsets. But those never happen, right?
Next Spec Feb 29th