Now that the selection committee has released its top sixteen teams, it’s time to start dreaming about the glory that is March Madness. It also means that is time for me to publish my first edition of Brad-ketology for the 2020 season (my personal NCAA/NIT bracket projections). For the eleventh consecutive season, this column will become the staple of my blog from now until Selection Sunday. Brad-ketology is a little different than other NCAA bracket projections in that it is much more expansive, as it also includes the NIT field and NIT bubble. Furthermore, it is one of the columns used in the nationally-recognized bracket project which seeds NCAA teams by taking an average of the most prominent bracket projections in the country.
The teams below are displayed below on an S-curve, so they are ranked from left to right within each seeding line. The italicized teams are ones predicted to win their conference tourney and gain an automatic bid to the dance. For the conferences who currently have NCAA tourney teams, it is assumed that one of those teams will win their conference tourney. If not, then a stolen bid would result, and the number of at-large bids would drop.
Also, just to clarify, my bracket projection is intended to project the NCAA Tournament field if it was chosen today. Unlike some bracketologists, I am not trying to predict how each team will finish the season and then seed the teams based on that. There is one slight exception to this rule, however, and that is that I have always chosen to award the projected automatic bid for each conference to the best team in that conference, and not the team who is currently leading the conference standings. Given how unbalanced conference schedules are, it just seems like common sense to project that the best team in a conference will win the league championship, not the squad currently in first place.
Brad-ketology columns will typically be published twice a week (typically on Mondays and Fridays) and more often than that when it gets closer to tourney time. Please feel free to comment or debate.
NCAA Tourney Field:
1-seeds: Baylor, Kansas, Gonzaga, San Diego State
2-seeds: Duke, Dayton, Louisville, Seton Hall
3-seeds: West Virginia, Maryland, Florida State, Auburn
4-seeds: Villanova, Penn State, Kentucky, Iowa
5-seeds: Butler, Michigan State, Colorado, Arizona
6-seeds: Oregon, Marquette, LSU, Creighton
7-seeds: Illinois, Michigan, Rutgers, Texas Tech
8-seeds: Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin, BYU
9-seeds: Houston, Stanford, Rhode Island, Florida
10-seeds: Saint Mary’s, Oklahoma, Virginia, Southern Cal
11-seeds: Arkansas, Xavier, Minnesota, VCU, Arizona State, Wichita State
12-seeds: Northern Iowa, East Tenn. State, Liberty, Yale
13-seeds: Stephen F. Austin, Vermont, North Texas, Northern Colorado
14-seeds: New Mexico State, Colgate, UC Irvine, Winthrop
15-seeds: Wright State, Hofstra, North Dakota State, Arkansas Little Rock
16-seeds: Murray State, Bowling Green, Prairie View, Robert Morris, Monmouth, North Carolina A & T
NIT Tourney Field:
1-seeds: Alabama, Cincinnati, Indiana, Mississippi State
2-seeds: Utah State, Northern Iowa, Providence, Memphis
3-seeds: NC State, East Tennessee State, Syracuse, Texas
4-seeds: Tennessee, Liberty, Georgetown, Yale
5-seeds: Richmond, Oregon State, Notre Dame, Utah
6-seeds: Virginia Tech, TCU, Washington, St. John’s
7-seeds: UConn, SMU, Pittsburgh, South Carolina
8-seeds: DePaul, UNC Greensboro, Tulsa, Furman
Ranking of Other Postseason Contenders: Duquesne, Saint Louis