College Basketball

A Selection Sunday Preview

For the past seven years, the NCAA Selection Committee has invited sports journalists to Indianapolis to participate in a mock selection committee in order to elucidate the process of picking and seeding the 68 teams that will appear on millions of fresh brackets less than 31 days from now. The mock selection process began today and will continue through tomorrow, with 20 journalists working in pairs of 2 to play the part of 10 committee members. Mike Waters of provided a run down of who is participating and which committee members they are mimicking in his column this afternoon. Just as each committee member is tasked with monitoring several different conferences throughout the season, each team of journalists will have 3 or 4 conferences that they are “responsible” for. For an inside look at the process I would recommend following the Twitter feeds of those who are participating. Jeff Borzello and Rob Dauster, two of my favorite hoops writers are on the mock committee this year, so be sure to check in on their Tweets today and tomorrow.

In advance of today’s mock selection process, chair of the (actual) committee and Athletic Director of Xavier University, Mike Bobinski, gave a Q & A via teleconference that was posted on The session begins with an introductory statement by Bobinski in which he goes over the process of conference monitoring reports, which are underway right now, and outlines the unpredictability and excitement of this season’s college basketball action. He then goes into answering questions which cover topics such as the importance of non-conference strength of schedule, the relevance and weight of the RPI, how many tools of statistical analysis are available to the committee, the process of placing teams in the four different regions, and the anticipation of hosting the Final Four at Cowboy Stadium next year.

Selection Sunday is one of the most exciting days of the year for college hoops heads and is the official indicator that March Madness has arrived, turning all eyes to the sport of college basketball. Now that the mock committee selection is underway and the actual final selection is only about four and a half weeks away now, I thought it would be an appropriate time to try my hand at Bracketology, as so many do. Most pre-selection brackets are formed in a way that assumes who the committee would choose for the field if Selection Sunday were held the day the bracket was made. Rather than take that approach, I thought I would look forward four and a half weeks in the future and make a bracket based on how I think the college hoops landscape will develop over the next 31 days, and how the selection committee will react when putting the entire season in perspective. Without further ado, my predictions for the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Tournament field:

This looks fun too. (Photo from Bill Potter,


Automatic Qualifiers will be shown in bold.

Italicized teams are playing in the First Four games.


1 seeds: Indiana, Michigan State, Miami, Duke

2 seeds: Gonzaga, Florida, Michigan, Pittsburgh

3 seeds: Arizona, Kansas, Syracuse, Colorado State

4 seeds: Oklahoma State, Ohio State, New Mexico, Louisville

5 seeds: Georgetown, VCU, Marquette, Kansas State

6 seeds: San Diego State, North Carolina State, Wichita State, Butler

7 seeds: UCLA, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota

8 seeds: Notre Dame, Creighton, St. Mary’s, Missouri

9 seeds: Oregon, Cincinnati, UNLV, La Salle

10 seeds: Memphis, North Carolina, Kentucky, Iowa State

11 seeds: Colorado, Oklahoma, Charlotte, Virginia/Ole Miss

12 seeds: Middle Tennessee, Belmont, Boise State, St. Louis/Baylor

13 seeds: Stephen F. Austin, Bucknell, Akron, Denver

14 seeds: North Dakota State, Princeton, Detroit, Davidson

15 seeds: Stony Brook, Weber State, Florida Gulf Coast, Pacific

16 seeds: Drexel, UNC-Asheville, Quinnipiac/Manhattan, NC Central/Texas Southern


LAST FOUR IN: Virginia, St. Louis, Ole Miss, Baylor

FIRST FOUR OUT: Villanova, Alabama, Massachusetts, Southern Mississippi

NEXT FOUR OUT: Arizona State, St. John’s, Stanford, Indiana State


Bids by Conference:

  • Big 10 (7)
  • Big East (7)
  • Big 12 (6)
  • ACC (5)
  • Mountain West (5)
  • Atlantic 10 (5)
  • SEC (4)
  • Pac 12 (4)
  • Missouri Valley (2)
  • West Coast (2)


Here’s to another braket-busting thriller of a tournament. (Photo author unknown, source:



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