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NCAA Tournament Bracket Projections -- November 14, 2008

The college basketball season has begun (barely), but something’s missing … the PHSports preseason NCAA tournament bracket projections.

Make no mistake about it. The North Carolina Tar Heels are the team to beat this season. Despite injuries early on, Tyler Hansbrough’s injury is not of the long-term variety. Who’s the best among the rest? Try UCLA, Texas, Duke, Tennessee and The Big East Conference.

Yes, I went there. In past seasons, the Big East has struggled to get the elusive 9th bid from its conference. Not only will the conference earn all nine bids, they boast three of the nation’s best eight teams. While some love Pittsburgh and Notre Dame, I favor the teams of Calhoun and Pitino.

Among the sleeper conferences, look no further than the Western time zone. The Mountain West (UNLV, San Diego State, BYU, Utah) and the West Coast Conferences (Gonzaga, St. Mary’s, San Diego) are this year’s Atlantic 10. That said, this will not be a big year for the mid-majors as some of the nation’s best mid-major programs lost players (to graduation, of course).

Let the basketball begin! If you have any questions, comments, or just wish to send a shout, shoot me a line at phashemi@gmail.com.

The Seedings
1: North Carolina (ACC), UConn (Big East), UCLA (PAC-10), Louisville
2: Texas (Big XII), Pittsburgh, Duke (ACC), Tennessee
3: Notre Dame, Purdue (Big Ten), Oklahoma, Gonzaga (WCC)
4: Memphis (C-USA), Marquette, Arizona State, Florida (SEC)
5: Michigan State, Miami-FL, Kansas, USC
6: Georgetown, Ohio State, Villanova, St. Mary’s
7: Clemson, Xavier, Syracuse, Kentucky
8: Creighton (MVC), Baylor, Wake Forest, UNLV (Mountain West)
9: West Virginia, Wisconsin, UAB, Oklahoma State
10: Washington, San Diego State, Davidson (Southern), Vanderbilt
11: Nevada (WAC), LSU, VCU (CAA), Virginia Tech
12: BYU, Washington State, St. Joseph’s, Ole Miss
13: Cleveland State (Horizon), Western Michigan (MAC), Siena (Metro Atlantic), Oakland (Summit)
14: American (Patriot), Vermont (America East), Stephen F. Austin (Southland), Portland State (Big Sky)
15: Cornell (Ivy), South Alabama (Sun Belt), Belmont (Atlantic Sun), Cal State Northridge (Big West)
16: Winthrop (Big South), Delaware State (MEAC), Murray State (Ohio Valley), Mount St. Mary’s (Northeast), Jackson State (SWAC)

Last Four In: BYU, Washington State, St. Joseph’s, Ole Miss
Last Four Out: Missouri, San Diego, Arizona, Temple
Next Four Out: Minnesota, Providence, Alabama, Utah

Seeding Summary (Multi-Bid Conferences Only in Order of Percentage)

Big East: 9/16
ACC: 6/12
SEC: 6/12
Pac-10: 5/10
Big XII: 5/12
Big Ten: 4/11
Mountain West: 3/9
West Coast: 2/8
C-USA: 2/12
A-10: 2/14

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