by Brian Tonsoni
This is the point of the college basketball season where fans ask the big question. "Is my team going to make the tournament." A slightly different version is "What does _______ (insert team name) have to do to make the tournament." If you have to ask, there is a chance the answer may be no. The latter question can be answered with " Win quality games."
Taking a look at our top 46 seeds in our bracket at this point and we have only four teams with two Tier 1 wins or less.
Clemson 2-7 with 9 Tier 2 wins
Rhode Island 2-4 with 5 Tier 2 wins
Nevada 2-2 with 3 Tier 2 wins
Creighton 2-7 with 6 Tier 2 wins
There are 10 teams with 3 Tier 1 wins
With 68 teams in the bracket overall, 22 go to conferences that will have only one entry. That leaves 46 spots for the remaining automatic qualifiers and the 36 at large teams.
In the top 46 teams, only 14 teams have less than 4 Tier 1 wins. The teams we have out must attempt to replace the teams above by matching or exceeding win totals at this time. The goal of any bubble out team should be 4 to 5 Tier 1 wins. This is to simply be in discussion. At that point it is likely that the committee will compare to similar teams with even more criteria. Without the wins, we don't see how teams cam make the tournament.
We have 14 teams out of the tournament that we are watching closely. Currently only 4 of those teams have three or more Tier 1 wins.
Temple with 3--- but has 4 Tier 3 losses
Mississippi St with 3--- no bad losses--- may be a team to watch. Sub 300 non conf SOS
Oklahoma St with 4--- 16-12 overall- no bad losses--- keep an eye on them
Georgia with 6--- 15-12 overall- two Tier 3 losses
Every other team has two or less wins. This includes St. Mary's, UCLA, Syracuse, USC and Louisville. The bubble seems stronger this year despite most bubble teams having double digit losses at this point.
"Is my team in?" We say---- "If they win down the stretch they have a chance."