March Madness bracket predictions 4.0: Projecting the Field of 68 for 2021 NCAA Tournament

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Selection Sunday for the 2021 NCAA men’s basketball tournament is simply days away.

The 68-team subject is taking form by convention match week, and Wednesday’s schedule options 33 convention match video games. Lots can change from the No. 1 seeds to the bubble over the subsequent 4 days, and SN will monitor the motion with day by day updates from right here by Selection Sunday.

Here is a have a look at Sporting News’ up to date Field of 68 as of Wednesday, March 10:

MORE: Sporting News’ 2020-21 college basketball All-Americans

March Madness bracket predictions for 2021 NCAA Tournament

Projected No. 1 seeds

  • **Gonzaga 26-0 (West Coast)
  • Baylor 21-1 (Big 12)
  • Michigan 19-3 (Big Ten)
  • Illinois 20-6

Lowdown: Gonzaga gained the West Coast Conference match for the eighth time in 9 seasons and needs to be a digital lock for the high seed in the match. Baylor additionally seems to be a lock for a No. 1 seed heading into the Big Ten match. Illinois and Michigan possible will keep on this line too, however it may require profitable a minimum of one sport in the Big Ten match simply to be protected.

Projected No. 2 seeds

  • Alabama 21-6 (SEC)
  • Iowa 20-7
  • Houston 21-3 (American)
  • Ohio State 18-8

Lowdown: Iowa and Ohio State are fascinating 2-seeds on completely different paths. The Hawkeyes may slide as much as a No. 1 with a powerful displaying in Indianapolis. KenPom has Iowa at No. 4, so it is potential. The Buckeyes, in the meantime, are a borderline 3-seed after shedding their final 4 video games of the common season. Ohio State slid to the No. 5 seed in the Big Ten match. To be honest, three of these late-season losses have been to top-10 groups.

Projected No. 3 seeds

  • Arkansas 21-5
  • Virginia 17-6 (ACC)
  • Kansas 19-8
  • Texas 17-7

Lowdown: Arkansas enters the SEC Tournament as one of the hottest groups in school basketball. The Razorbacks have gained eight straight, together with an 81-66 victory towards Alabama on Feb. 24. Arkansas may play into the No. 2 line with ease. The Big 12 will put 4 groups on both the No. 3 or No. 4 line, relying on how they fare in the Big 12 match. Kansas and Texas are greater seeds than the pair of groups we positioned on the No. 4 line — and KenPom has them ranked greater as nicely.

Projected No. 4 seeds

  • Villanova 16-5 (Big East)
  • West Virginia 18-8
  • Oklahoma State 18-7
  • Purdue 18-8

Lowdown: West Virginia and Oklahoma State play in the Big 12 quarterfinals on Thursday, so that ought to clear up that debate. Villanova feels a contact low right here given their KenPom ranking of No. 10, and so they may simply play up a line (or two) pending on how they fare in the Big East match. Purdue did snag the No. 4 seed in the Big Ten match, however there’s a important hole between them and the different excessive seeds in the convention.

MORE: Iowa’s Luka Garza is Sporting News’ Player of the Year

Projected No. 5 seeds

  • Florida State 15-5
  • Creighton 18-7
  • Oregon 19-5 (Pac-12)
  • USC 21-6

Lowdown: Florida State has a powerful case to climb into that No. 4 line and is separated from Purdue by one spot on KenPom. The Seminoles did lose two of their final three video games in the common season. Oregon is the high seed in the Pac-12 match, and the Ducks gained their final 5 video games in the common season. That mentioned, Oregon had a 1-2 document towards USC and Colorado this season. The Buffaloes may simply be positioned on this line.

Projected No. 6 seeds

  • Colorado 20-7
  • Clemson 16-6
  • Texas Tech 17-9
  • Oklahoma 14-9

Lowdown: The Big 12 love continues. The convention may have all seven Tournament groups on the first six strains, and Texas Tech may go as a No. 5 seed at this level. Clemson closed the season with six wins its final seven video games. They are in respectable form to remain on this line.

Projected No. 7 seeds

  • Tennessee 17-7
  • LSU 16-8
  • San Diego State 20-4 (Mountain West)
  • Wisconsin 16-11

Lowdown: The Badgers have double-digit losses, however additionally they head into the Big Ten match with a KenPom ranking of No. 11. They are a first-rate candidate to be overseeded a contact based mostly on the power of the Big Ten. LSU, which gained 5 of its final seven video games, and Tennessee, which completed 3-3 in its final six, are each on this line proper now.

Projected No. 8 seeds

  • Florida 13-8
  • UConn 14-6
  • **Loyola-Chicago 24-4 ((*68*) Valley)
  • North Carolina 16-9

Lowdown: That’s lots of blue blood on the No. 8 line with the Tar Heels, Huskies and Gators; however the crew No. 1 seeds is likely to be cautious of is Loyola-Chicago. The Ramblers have misplaced only one sport since Jan. 11.

MORE: Michigan’s Juwan Howard is Sporting News’ Coach of the Year

Rest of subject projections

No. 9 seeds: Virginia Tech 15-5, St. Bonaventure (A-10), (*68*) 15-8, BYU 20-6
No. 10 seeds: Georgia Tech 15-8, UCLA 17-8, Louisville 13-6, Rutgers 14-10
No. 11 seeds: Michigan State 15-11, Maryland 15-12, VCU 19-6, **Winthrop 23-1 (Big South)
No. 12 seeds: Louisiana Tech 20-6 (C-USA), Wichita State 15-4, Colorado State* 17-5, Drake* 25-4, St. Louis* 14-6, Xavier* 13-7
No. 13 seeds: Toledo 20-7 (MAC), UC Santa Barbara 19-4 (Big West), Colgate 12-7 (Patriot), **Liberty 22-5 (A-Sun)
No. 14 seeds: **UNC-Greensboro 20-8 (Southern), **Morehead State 23-7 (Ohio Valley), Grand Canyon 15-6 (WAC), Southern Utah 19-3 (Big Sky)
No. 15 seeds: **Cleveland State 19-7 (Horizon), Siena 12-4 (MAAC), Nicholls State 17-6 (Southland), Hartford 13-8 (America East)
No. 16 seeds: Prairie View A&M 14-4 (SWAC), **Oral Roberts 16-10 (Summit), North Carolina A&T* 11-10 (MEAC), **Appalachian State* 17-11 (Sun Belt), **Mount St. Mary’s* 12-10 (Northeast), **Drexel 12-7* (Colonial)

*First Four groups
** Teams which have clinched automated bids

Last 4 in

  • St. Louis 14-6
  • Xavier 13-7
  • Drake 25-4
  • Colorado State 17-5

Lowdown: Drake did not win its convention match, however the Bulldogs ought to find a way crack the Field of 68. Colorado State higher win a sport in the MWC match to carry off two bubble groups behind them in the identical convention.

First 4 out

  • Utah State 18-7
  • Boise State 18-7
  • Syracuse 15-8
  • Ole Miss 15-10

Lowdown: Some projections favor both Utah State or Boise State over Colorado State for one of these final 4 spots. Syracuse shall be watching these video games carefully, however the Orange have to beat N.C. State, one other fringe bubble crew, in the 8-9 sport in the ACC Tournament. We have Ole Miss forward of Seton Hall in the pecking order, however that may change. Duke and Indiana stay off our radar for now.

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