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ON CAMPUS A look at the area college sports scene

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Time to burst your bubble

Few holes to fill

Here is a look at the NCAA men’s field as Selection Sunday approaches.

Remember 65 teams make up the field.

THESE TEAMS ARE ALREADY IN THE FIELD AFTER WINNING CONFERENCE TOURNAMENTS (12): Austin Peay, Belmont, Butler, Cornell (REGULAR SEASON WINNER), Davidson, Drake, George Mason, Oral Roberts, San Diego, Siena, Western Kentucky, Winthrop

THESE CONFERENCES WILL RECEIVE ONE-BID WITH TOURNAMENTS TO BE DECIDED THIS WEEK (9): America East, Big Sky, Big West, Mid-Eastern Athletic, Northeast, Patriot, Southland, Southwestern Athletic, Western Athletic. Note: Both Hartford and Sacred Heart are in title games.

Here is a look at the locks for the field: (32)
A-10
Xavier
ACC
Clemson, Duke, North Carolina
BIG EAST
Connecticut, Georgetown, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame, Pitt, West Virginia
BIG TEN
Indiana, Michigan State, Purdue, Wisconsin.
BIG 12
Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas.
CONFERENCE USA
Memphis
MISSOURI VALLEY
Illinois State
MOUNTAIN WEST
BYU
PAC-10
Stanford, UCLA, USC, Washington State
SEC
Kentucky, Mississippi State, Tennessee, Vanderbilt
WEST COAST
Gonzaga

That leaves 12 teams fighting for their tournament lives. Syracuse has to be out after losing badly in the Big East tournament.

ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE BUBBLE (8)
Villanova, Saint Mary’s, Baylor, Kent State, Arizona, Miami (Fla.), South Alabama, UNLV

LAST FOUR IN: (4)
Arkansas (20-10, 42nd in RPI) Arizona (18-13, 29th in RPI) Ohio State (19-12, 48th in RPI) Maryland (18-13, 71st in RPI)

LAST TEAMS OUT:
Massachusetts (21-9, 41st in RPI) Arizona State (19-11, 75th in RPI) Oregon (18-12, 52nd in RPI) Texas A&M (22-9, 47th in RPI) Dayton (20-9, 32nd in RPI) Florida (21-10, 65th in RPI)

The final dozen spots will be decided in upcoming conference tournaments. Villanova looks to be in the bracket after knocking out Syracuse. Florida has work to do and I feel that Ohio State's win over Purdue will get them a berth. Maryland owns a win at North Carolina and that's huge as they will be the Las Vegas favorite to win the tournament.

Looking for a sleeper? I think Washington State will make some serious noise in the tournament.

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