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USC had lost three of their last four games headed into a road clash with Stanford, which is just about as tough as it gets. Someone forgot to tell JuJu Watkins.

The freshman sensation dropped jaws with a 51-point explosion that was the most by any Division I women's player in nearly two years and a huge jolt to USC's NCAA Tournament resume. Other Trojans combined for 16 points on 7-of-38 from the field, but it didn't matter in a nine-point victory

That nearly wasn't the only 50-point game of the week. Iowa's Hannah Stuelke combined scoring prowess with mesmerizing efficiency against Penn State on Thursday, finishing with 47 points on 17-20 shooting for the current No. 1 seed Hawkeyes.

With all that scoring, Geno Auriemma recording his 1,200th career win Wednesday against Seton Hall may have gone slightly under the radar. He joins Tara VanDerveer (1,206 and counting) and Mike Krzyzewski (1,202) as the only Division I basketball coaches (women's or men's) to reach that mark and could pass Coach K as quickly as next Friday.

However, that would have to start with a win against South Carolina, a team that hasn't lost a regular-season game (not including conference tournaments) since ... December 2021. As they say, no biggie.

No. 1 seeds

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*South Carolina (22-0, 10-0 SEC): NET 1, SOS 14

The Gamecocks have predictably continued to roll through conference play, winning their last two games at home against Ole Miss and Missouri by an average of 33.5 points. But next, they face their toughest test yet. Sunday's home tilt with UConn is deservedly one of the most hyped games of the season, and to make matters more interesting, South Carolina will be without Kamilla Cardoso, who is currently with the Brazilian national team for Olympic qualifying.

*Iowa (22-2, 11-1 Big Ten): NET 5, SOS 19

Hannah. Stuelke. 47 points. With all eyes on Caitlin Clark, the 6-foot-2 Iowa sophomore dominated the interior at Penn State, finishing just one point shy of Megan Gustafson's single-game Hawkeye record. Stuelke's previous career-high was 22 points. Caitlin Clark's is 46. Iowa eclipsed 110 points for the second time in its last three games and now has as many games in triple-digits as games with fewer than 90 points (seven apiece). 

*Stanford (20-3, 9-2 Pac-12): NET 2, SOS 9

After nearly getting outscored by JuJu Watkins alone in a loss to USC, the Cardinal rebounded in a big way with a 20-point victory over UCLA that knocked the Bruins off the No. 1 seed line. The performance gave Stanford its sixth NET top 25 win of the season, matched only by USC. Cameron Brink is once again serving as Stanford's defensive anchor in her senior season as the Division I leader in blocks per game (3.5) and the only player top-five in the nation in both blocks and rebounds per game (11.9).

Colorado (19-3, 9-2 Pac-12): NET 16, SOS 7

The Buffaloes make their season debut as a No. 1 seed following a pair of road wins against Washington State and Washington. Colorado's only No. 1 seed in school history came in the 1995 NCAA Tournament, where they reached the Elite 8 before a loss to 3-seed Georgia. Last season was the school's first appearance in the Big Dance in a decade, so it's been a rapid rise for the team tied atop the Pac-12 with perennial contenders Stanford.

No. 2 seeds

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UCLA (17-4, 6-4 Pac-12): NET 7, SOS 1

After alternating losses and wins over its last seven games, UCLA should recover this week at home against Arizona and Arizona State. Anything less than two wins will spell real trouble for the Bruins' hopes of ending up on the top line despite having the nation's top strength of schedule. Stanford transfer Lauren Betts has blossomed this season (15.4 points per game, 8.6 rebounds per game) but has missed four straight games with an undisclosed medical issue. It's a huge blow for the team with the third-best rebound margin (+14.2) in Division I.

NC State (20-3, 8-3 ACC): NET 14, SOS 24

Another No. 1 seed contender, NC State, used a huge first half to propel a win against Louisville on Monday, but had its five-game win streak snapped Thursday against Virginia Tech. Such is life in power conferences where you can play two teams currently projected to host in the opening weekend of March Madness back-to-back. Four of the Wolfpack's next five games are on the road, including showdowns with Notre Dame, North Carolina and Duke that will prove to be major tests.

*Texas (21-3, 8-3 Big 12): NET 4, SOS 41

After wins against Baylor and Kansas State in their last two games, the sky once again seems to be the limit for Texas, leaving us to wonder just how good they really could have been with a healthy Rori Harmon. Without another opponent ranked higher than 36th in the NET for the remainder of the regular season, it's somewhat downhill from here. If Texas can finish at least 6-1 down the stretch, you have to love its odds of a top-two seed and perhaps a chance at more if there's chaos.

Kansas State (20-3, 9-2 Big 12): NET 8, SOS 37

Losses at Oklahoma and Texas have blemished the Wildcats' previously gaudy 20-1 record, but have not led to a significant change in their forecast. They had already beaten both schools earlier in conference play with a healthy Ayoka Lee, who is on track to return in the next week or two following ankle surgery, according to head coach Jeff Mittie. Serena Sundell has elevated her game in Lee's absence. The junior guard is averaging nearly roughly 15 points, six rebounds, seven assists and three steals per game over her last five.

No. 3 seeds

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Ohio State (20-3, 11-1 Big Ten): NET 11, SOS 12

The Buckeyes are a perfect 10-0 since the start of 2024 and have now beaten both Iowa and Indiana, who appear to be the only major contenders in the Big Ten, over that span. Ohio State forces more than 21 turnovers per game while holding opponents to just 28.4% from behind the arc. Beating Ohio State is a grind and the Big Ten has yet to figure out the puzzle.

USC (16-4, 6-4 Pac-12): NET 17, SOS 5

With a new school-record 51 points and the most points by any Division I freshman in a game since Elena Delle Donne's 54 for Delaware against James Madison in 2010, JuJu Watkins's performance against UCLA was everything we knew she was capable of but still never quite expected to see, let alone this early in her career. Games like that, on the road against a top-five team in the country, are one-in-a-million. Then again, so is she. Come tournament time, it can often be about who has the best player.

*UConn (20-4, 12-0 Big East): NET 3, SOS 3

Conference play has been more like child's play for the Huskies, but they still have one of the country's strangest resumes. No one has more than UConn's 16 wins against the NET top 100, but they're also just 1-4 against the NET top 25. And if Creighton can't reenter that top echelon of teams, UConn's last opportunity for such a win before Selection Sunday will be its next game against South Carolina. The Huskies have a high floor, but can really raise their ceiling.

*Gonzaga (23-2, 10-0 WCC): NET 12, SOS 81

Five straight opponents have missed at least two-thirds of their field goal attempts against Gonzaga. It's been a complete domination of the WCC by the Zags, and although their conference does not contain another at-large contender, they had a tough nonconference schedule (No. 16 in Division I) and racked up enough wins to feel more than comfortable about hosting barring anything unforeseen.

No. 4 seeds

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Indiana (19-4, 10-2 Big Ten): NET 13, SOS 21

Chloe Moore recorded the fourth triple-double in Indiana history as the Hoosiers rallied from an 11-point second-half deficit Thursday against Michigan State. Indiana shot 67.3% from the field and would've run away with it had Michigan State not gone 12-18 from three-point range. Indiana has three games shooting 65% or better since 2000 -- they've all come this season.

Louisville (20-4, 9-2 ACC): NET 21, SOS 33

The differences between Louisville's resume and teams even on the No. 2 seed line are not particularly large. There's a lot of room for upward mobility for teams that can continue to pick up quality wins over the next month. Louisville is 13-0 at home but has lost back-to-back road games and will look to buck that trend Sunday at Syracuse.

Oregon State (18-3, 7-3 Pac-12): NET 22, SOS 53

The Beavers had a quiet week, picking up just a four-point road win over Oregon that effectively amounts to a shrug. This week, however, will be much different. Two weeks ago, Oregon State catapulted up the bracket after beating Colorado and Utah at home. This time around, they'll face both on the road. Even winning one of two would continue to impress the committee.

Virginia Tech (19-4, 10-2 ACC): NET 15, SOS 35

Down look now, but here comes Virginia Tech. Winners of six straight and now with claim to a season sweep over NC State, last year's ACC Tournament champions are rounding into form thanks to the continued brilliance of Elizabeth Kitley and Georgia Amoore, who combine for more than half of the team's scoring output. But it's more than just scoring. Kitley's 11.6 rebounds per game are seventh in Division I while Amoore's 7.7 assists per game rank third.

No. 5 seeds

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LSU (20-4, 7-3 SEC): NET 9, SOS 62

Syracuse (19-4, 9-3 ACC): NET 39, SOS 61

Baylor (17-5, 6-5 Big 12): NET 18, SOS 43

Creighton (19-3, 10-2 Big East): NET 26, SOS 60

No. 6 seeds

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Utah (17-6, 6-4 Pac-12): NET 6, SOS 4

*Notre Dame (17-5, 7-4 ACC): NET 10, SOS 48

West Virginia (20-2, 9-2 Big 12): NET 20, SOS 89

Oklahoma (16-6, 10-1 Big 12): NET 36, SOS 29

No. 7 seeds

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North Carolina (15-8, 7-4 ACC): NET 29, SOS 10

Michigan State (17-6, 7-5 Big Ten): NET 19, SOS 51

Washington State (15-8, 4-6 Pac-12): NET 24, SOS 11

Duke (15-7, 7-4 ACC): NET 23, SOS 23

No. 8 seeds

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Florida State (17-7, 8-4 ACC): NET 40, SOS 42

*Princeton (17-3, 7-0 Ivy): NET 33, SOS 83

Penn State (16-7, 7-5 Big Ten): NET 25, SOS 27

Mississippi State (20-5, 7-3 SEC): NET 27, SOS 78

No. 9 seeds

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Ole Miss (16-7, 6-4 SEC): NET 51, SOS 52

Marquette (18-5, 7-5 Big East): NET 30, SOS 74

*UNLV (19-2, 9-1 MWC): NET 34, SOS 196

Nebraska (15-8, 7-5 Big Ten): NET 31, SOS 39

No. 10 seeds

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Maryland (13-10, 5-7 Big Ten): NET 35, SOS 2

Iowa State (13-8, 7-4 Big 12): NET 38, SOS 36

Texas A&M (16-6, 4-5 SEC): NET 32, SOS 71

Saint Joseph's (22-2, 11-1 Atlantic 10): NET 52, SOS 174

No. 11 seeds

Miami (Fla.) (15-7, 5-6 ACC): NET 37, SOS 40

*Green Bay (18-5, 11-2 Horizon): NET 43, SOS 139

*Richmond (20-4, 10-1 Atlantic 10): NET 50, SOS 96

Michigan (15-9, 6-6 Big Ten): NET 54, SOS 38

Alabama (19-6, 6-4 SEC): NET 28, SOS 82

No. 12 seeds

Vanderbilt (17-7, 4-6 SEC): NET 57, SOS 72

Tennessee (14-8, 7-3 SEC): NET 49, SOS 17

*Belmont (16-5, 9-1 MVC): NET 67, SOS 93

*Middle Tennessee (18-4, 8-0 CUSA): NET 41, SOS 182

*Florida Gulf Coast (20-4, 10-0 ASUN): NET 60, SOS 110

No. 13 seeds

*Toledo (17-4, 10-1 MAC): NET 80, SOS 127

*South Dakota State (17-5, 9-0 Summit): NET 61, SOS 88

*Fairfield (20-1, 12-0 MAAC): NET 73, SOS 346

*Stony Brook (18-2, 8-1 CAA): NET 69, SOS 315

No. 14 seeds

*Chattanooga (20-3, 8-0 SoCon): NET 99, SOS 304

*Eastern Washington (18-5, 8-2 Big Sky): NET 76, SOS 243

*Grand Canyon (19-4, 11-1 WAC): NET 96, SOS 340

*North Texas (17-5, 7-3 AAC): NET 85, SOS 240

No. 15 seeds

*Marshall (17-6, 11-1 Sun Belt): NET 97, SOS 258

*Jackson State (14-6, 9-0 SWAC): NET 103, SOS 69

*Maine (15-8, 8-1 America East): NET 112, SOS 226

*Lamar (15-5, 9-1 Southland): NET 133, SOS 147

No. 16 seeds

*UC Irvine (14-7, 9-3 Big West): NET 127, SOS 321

*Norfolk State (17-5, 6-1 MEAC): NET 135, SOS 295

*Holy Cross (14-7, 8-2): NET 141, SOS 294

*Sacred Heart (14-9, 8-1 NEC): NET 238, SOS 326

*UT Martin (10-12, 7-4 OVC): NET 215, SOS 251

*Radford (11-12, 7-2 Big South): NET 276, SOS 198

Last Four In

Michigan (15-9, 6-6 Big Ten): NET 54, SOS 38

Alabama (19-6, 6-4 SEC): NET 28, SOS 82

Vanderbilt (17-7, 4-6 SEC): NET 57, SOS 72

Tennessee (14-8, 7-3 SEC): NET 49, SOS 17

First Four Out

Minnesota (14-9, 4-8 Big Ten): NET 42, SOS 25

Florida (12-9, 3-6 SEC): NET 58, SOS 49

California (13-10, 3-8 Pac-12): NET 64, SOS 15

Washington (13-8, 3-7 Pac-12): NET 47, SOS 20