Top 16 seeds prove worthy over two weeks
Just two weeks ago Saturday, the NCAA announced its first ever pre- Selection Sunday top 16 seeds for the NCAA Tournament.
It was such a good idea it would seem CBS, which makes money on the broadcasts, and the NCAA, which got to promote its biggest moneymaker, might put their mighty heads together and figure out a way to do it weekly starting in February and ending eight days before the field is announced.
The 2017 NCAA Tournament field of 68 will be announced two weeks from today, and don’t expect the top 16 seeds to change much if the past two weeks were any indication.
Of course, there were some great games Saturday, and not counting the games late Saturday night, this is how the Big 16 did since being named a pre-tournament seed.
1. Villanova went 4-1, and the Wildcats’ only loss was on the road to No. 4 seed Butler, 74-66. The Big East looks like a four-bid conference, but if Seton Hall makes it as the fifth team, the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville should be in barring a
1. Kansas went 4-0 as Bill Self continues to own the Big
12. One of the victories was on the road at Baylor, so the Jayhawks and Wildcats could trade places on March 12.
1. Baylor will find itself a No. 2 or even No. 3 seed after going 2-3, although the loss to the Jayhawks was 67-65. The second loss was to former University of Arkansas at Little Rock Coach Chris Beard and Texas Tech, who are really tough at home this season. And Iowa State, which handed Baylor a 72-69 loss Saturday, is a hot team.
1. Gonzaga (vs. Brigham Young late Saturday night) was still the only undefeated team in the country, but it gets hurt a little by the lack of competition in the West Coast Conference, which will get a second bid in St. Mary’s.
2. North Carolina has been under the radar, but it edged toward a No. 1 seed by going 4-0. It is going to win the ACC, a league that some are saying could get 11 tournament bids.
2. Florida State lost to Notre Dame and Pittsburgh on the road and went 2-2, so the Seminoles will drop to a No. 3 seed most likely. On a side note, the Seminoles have been much improved since Dickey Nutt joined the staff.
2. Louisville’s recent loss was at North Carolina 74-63.
2. Oregon won all five games, and Dana Altman still holds the record for shortest stay as a coach at Arkansas — a news conference and a dinner that night before he resigned the next day.
3. Arizona (vs. UCLA late Saturday night) also stayed in the Pac-12 championship hunt by winning its previous four.
3. Virginia didn’t fall out of the tournament but lost four games, all to teams who will be part of March Madness. The Cavs are now more likely a No. 5 seed.
3. Florida and Kentucky are easily the SEC’s best, and their game Saturday should have been one of the most watched in the country. The Gators’ loss to Kentucky shouldn’t hurt their No. 3 seed.
3. Kentucky is wildly talented, but the youth sometimes takes a toll. Kentucky could become a No. 2 seed.
4. Butler lost the day the 16 seeds were announced, then won three in a row, including a victory over No. 1 Nova.
4. West Virginia went 4-1, with its loss at No. 1 Kansas, 84-80.
4. UCLA (vs. Arizona late Saturday night) went 3-0 and is going to be very dangerous in the Pac-12 Tournament.
4. Duke went 3-2, and at times seems to suffer from the same thing Kentucky does: too much youth. Of course, both have become programs for one-and-dones, although Mike Krzyzewski seems to keep more veterans. Still, Duke is Duke and will probably be a No. 4 seed.