After four months of basketball, fields for the NCAA, NIT, and CBI will be released tomorrow. In this piece, we’ll put together where each Pac-12 team fits into the picture as of late afternoon Saturday.
|Category||Team||Projected Seed||Projected Opponent||P12 S Curve Rank|
|Definitely Dancin’||Arizona||5||Iowa State/Virginia||17|
|Bubble In||Colorado||10||Colorado State||38|
|Bubble Out||Arizona State||2 (NIT)||New Mexico State|
|NIT Locks||Stanford||3 (NIT)||Richmond|
|NIT Bubble Out||Washington||N/A||Weber State (CBI)|
Definitely Dancing: Arizona is the highest ranked Pac-12 team, and will remain the highest no matter the result of the UCLA/Oregon game tonight. The Wildcats have to like their current standing on the seed line, as it gives them a chance at an opening game with a team that will have played two days earlier. I project either Iowa State or Virginia to be that team, and if I were a Wildcats fan, I’d be pulling hard for Virginia rather than the Cyclones. Next up is six seed UCLA, and if they beat Oregon tonight to take home both the regular season and conference titles, I see them climbing up to a low five-seed. But right now they would match up with Bucknell, the Patriot League champions that finished the season at 28-5. The Bison are much more dangerous than your usual mid-major conference champion, ranking only behind Gonzaga, New Mexico, Saint Louis, Memphis, and Creighton as the mid-major conference champs. Our final lock goes to Oregon, a team that slipped to the bubble last week before winning its first two Pac-12 Tournament games and advancing to the tournament championship game. The Ducks will of course want to win tonight, but knowing their only escape from the #8/#9 game will be with a loss to the Bruins, a defeat wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world. If they were to remain where they currently are at 3:00 PM PT tomorrow, I have Dana Altman and company meeting NC State in the Second Round.