There has been some heated conversation going into this year's NCAA tourney about whether the field should include Automatic bids for conference champions, or just the 65 best teams. There are intriguing arguments on both sides of this issue. Teams like Davidson and George Mason might not get a sniff of the tourney without auto bids. It is rather unlikely that any school at that level will ever win the tourney, however.
Here's What I Think: It would have been conceivable that Indiana could have won four games and won the Big(11)Ten's automatic tourney bid. Under no circumstances can something like that be allowed. I believe there should be automatic bids but that the conference regular season champion only has to play in the final. Eliminate the temptation to coast or assume. Just because you won the Southland Conference regular season championship does not mean you can get into the tourney if you lose in the conference tourney.
I do believe the National Championship needs to be based on more that getting hot for three weeks. I am not convinced ANY team should be allowed in if they didn't win more than 50% of their regular season games. Finally, I don't think adding more teams is the answer either. This time of year is great just as it stands. There may be a few small tweaks available but no major restructuring is needed.