by Jerry Palm
Wow, it was a tough week all over the place in the bracket. The four top-rated teams in the AP poll lost, although the Kansas loss was on Monday night, so it was already accounted for in the previous bracket here. By my count, 22 at-large teams seeded 8 or below, or were just on the outside lookng in, also lost.
Poll voters being what they are voted Duke up to No. 1 from 5th. Despite that, the Blue Devils still don't have a No. 1 seed profile. Pitt and Ohio State still have the most complete tournament resumes are are the overall top two teams. After that, it gets a little dicier.
San Diego State had kind of a bad week. Oh, sure, they won twice, but the team that had been arguably their best win, St. Mary's, went in the tank. The Gaels lost at 300+ RPI San Diego and followed that by getting drilled at home by Utah State. The Aztecs still have a sweep of UNLV, which is better than most people give them credit for.
I moved Kansas up to the top line in place of Texas after the Longhorns lost at Nebraska. Texas has more good wins than any of the other top seed competitiors, but also twice as many losses, and now two of them are to likely non-tournament teams.
Purdue moved up to a second seed after a week in which the Boilers beat two top ten-ranked teams at home.
San Diego St and Purdue point out the dangers, for lack of a better word, of looking at one team's selection or seed prospects in a vacuum.
The Aztecs had a good week, but came out of it with a slightly worse profile because of something a previous opponent had done. Some teams that were ahead of Purdue last week find themselves behind this week, not necessarily because of something they did, but because of something Purdue did.
People ask me all the time things like, "if my team does this, that and the other, are we in?" Unless one of those things is win the conference tournament, it's not definite. You might go out and do what you think is something pretty good, but something else happens out of your control and it turns out not to be good enough.
And then, sometimes things like this happen -- St. John's was a six seed in last week's bracket, beat Pitt over the weekend, and is now a seven. That's not because of anything the Red Storm did, or anything that other teams around them necessarily did. It is because I swapped them with UNLV to try to keep all those Big East teams as separate as possible in the bracket. The committee does that kind of thing too. In fact, sometimes the committee swaps seeds just to keep a team closer to home.
The Bubble Watch is updated also, so I'll have more about some of those teams there.
See complete Bracketology coverage here.