FGCU sealed its third NCAA tournament trip in five years last Sunday with a 77-61 victory over North Florida.
Last year, only 11 of 31 top seeds won their conference tournaments.
Last but not least are the Tar Heels.
Regarding non-conference strength of schedule, the teams rated high in it (Wake, Xavier, Vanderbilt, Rhode Island, Illinois) are using it to prop up their RPI. However, I still have them among my last four in, but numerous teams chasing them are now done playing.
This one was in doubt throughout, but Kentucky pulled away late. Since there's no home-court advantage at stake, the overall honor is more of a formality anyway.
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Lunardi bumped Duke up to a No. 2 seed but did not punish North Carolina for Friday's 93-83 loss. But that should not detract from the fact that they piled on 32 wins this season and took the conference title.
These conference tournament upsets are affecting the chances that any top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament will get upset in the first round all together since teams that originally were not supposed to be in the bracket are going to be 16 and 15 seeds, and teams that were going to be in those slots will be moved up to 14 and 13 seeds. Regardless of how many ACC members punch their ticket, from top-to-bottom, the ACC could very likely be the best conference in college basketball history.
But what about their nemesis?
In November, the Blue Devils were the overwhelming favorite to win it all. They are 86th in RPI!
The No. 1 seeds up for grabs. With the increase in the amount of participants, the increase from 10 to 25 brackets per person, and the decreasing amount of unpredictable teams in the tournament - the odds of a flawless bracket happening is becoming more and more likely.
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UCLA, Villanova and Kansas have all had excellent seasons this year, and it would be surprising if they were not all assigned No. 1 seed placements for this year's bracket. There's no consensus, however, on the last spot.
We don't know exactly which teams will make the tournament, but the ACC will have the most at-large schools because they now have six ranked teams in UNC, Louisville, Duke, Florida State, Virginia, and Notre Dame.
The Bulldogs don't compete in a powerhouse conference, but they went 15-0 in non-conference play.
Sure, they are 10-8 in the ACC; but when you take a closer look at the unbalanced scheduling you'll notice that they played BC, Georgia Tech, Miami, Louisville and Pitt twice.
Friday night's ACC Tournament semifinal between Duke and North Carolina will be college basketball's most watched game of the day by a significant margin, and the rubber match between the two programs gives the conference the exact type of buzz it desired when it made a decision to come to Brooklyn.
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