The Pi-Rate Ratings

February 25, 2013

30 Bracketology Ratings For College Basketball

30 Top Bracketologists Combined

There are more than 100 “bracketologists” on the Internet giving their opinions on which teams will make the NCAA Tournament.  Some are famous, like Joe Lunardi and Jerry Palm.  There are others you have never heard about, but who are actually more accurate than the big two.

 

We here at the PiRate Ratings do not have our own in-house Bracketologist.  We are experts in “Bracketnomics,” the study of choosing the winners in the brackets.

 

However, we have reversed-engineer our own bracketology by taking the 30 historically most accurate bracketologists and combining their predictions into a co-op rating.

 

Today, we debut our look at the projected tournament by projected seeds and then by conference with locks, close to being locks, and bubble teams.

 

We believe it is ridiculous to predict the actual matchups; this is pure showmanship.  You know that the teams will be seeded so that the opening seeds equal 17 (1-16, 2-15, 3-14, etc.)  So if a team projects as a 1-seed, they could play any of the projected 16 seeds.

 

We will show you our results by seed and then by conference.

 

By Seed

#

Team

Conference

Average

Out of 30

1

Indiana

Big Ten

1.00

30

1

Duke

ACC

1.07

30

1

Miami (FLA.)

ACC

1.43

30

1

Florida

SEC

1.67

30

2

Gonzaga

West Coast

1.67

30

2

Kansas

Big 12

1.77

30

2

Michigan

Big Ten

1.83

30

2

Michigan State

Big Ten

2.53

30

3

Arizona

Pacific-12

2.90

30

3

Louisville

Big East

2.97

30

3

New Mexico

Mountain West

3.03

30

3

Syracuse

Big East

3.37

30

4

Georgetown

Big East

2.77

30

4

Kansas State

Big 12

4.03

30

4

Wisconsin

Big Ten

4.27

30

4

Marquette

Big East

4.83

30

5

Oklahoma State

Big 12

4.57

30

5

Ohio State

Big Ten

4.77

30

5

Butler

Atlantic 10

5.57

30

5

Pittsburgh

Big East

6.03

30

6

UNLV

Mountain West

5.80

30

6

Notre Dame

Big East

6.30

30

6

Colorado State

Mountain West

6.47

30

6

North Carolina State

ACC

7.40

30

7

Memphis

CUSA

7.00

30

7

Oregon

Pacific-12

7.43

30

7

Illinois

Big Ten

7.80

29

7

Minnesota

Big Ten

7.83

30

8

Saint Louis

Atlantic 10

6.50

30

8

San Diego State

Mountain West

8.07

30

8

Virginia Commonwealth

Atlantic 10

8.27

30

8

Cincinnati

Big East

9.43

30

9

UCLA

Pacific-12

7.87

30

9

Oklahoma

Big 12

8.07

30

9

Wichita State

Missouri Valley

8.60

30

9

Missouri

SEC

8.60

30

10

Colorado

Pacific-12

8.90

30

10

North Carolina

ACC

9.03

30

10

Iowa State

Big 12

10.53

30

10

Creighton

Missouri Valley

10.63

30

11

California

Pacific-12

10.63

29

11

La Salle

Atlantic 10

11.50

29

11

Kentucky

SEC

11.60

29

11

Mississippi

SEC

14.83

15

12

Temple

Atlantic 10

11.50

29

12

Middle Tennessee

Sun Belt

11.53

30

12

Villanova

Big East

11.63

28

12

Belmont

Ohio Valley

11.70

30

12

St. Mary’s (CA)

West Coast

11.80

28

12

Virginia

ACC

14.27

18

13

Bucknell

Patriot

13.03

30

13

Akron

MAC

13.07

28

13

Louisiana Tech

WAC

13.30

28

13

Stephen F. Austin

Southland

14.40

24

14

Valparaiso

Horizon

13.93

28

14

Davidson

Southern

14.03

30

14

Harvard

Ivy

14.20

29

14

South Dakota State

Summit

14.40

26

15

Stony Brook

America East

14.70

30

15

Long Beach State

Big West

15.20

29

15

Montana

Big Sky

15.30

27

15

Niagara

Metro Atlantic

16.00

24

16

Northeastern

Colonial

15.73

28

16

Mercer

Atlantic Sun

15.90

28

16

Robert Morris

Northeast

15.97

27

16

Southern

SWAC

16.00

30

16

Norfolk State

Mid-Eastern

16.33

25

16

Charleston Southern

Big South

16.40

24

 

Last 4 In: Virginia, Villanova, St. Mary’s, and Temple

 

First 4 Out: Boise St., Maryland, Southern Miss, Northwestern St.

 

Next 4 Out: Chalotte, Denver, Baylor (Alabama/Tennessee Tie)

 

 

By Conference

 

America East (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Stony Brook

Vermont is the top contender.  The conference declared 3rd place Boston U ineligible for the league’s automatic bid because they accepted admittance to the Patriot League for 2013-14.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Albany

 

Atlantic 10 (3-7 bids)

Locks: Butler

Close: St. Louis and Virginia Commonwealth

Bubble: La Salle, Temple, Charlotte, U Mass

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Richmond, St. Joe’s, and Xavier have enough talent to sneak through to the conference tournament championship round.

 

ACC (6 or 7 bids)

Locks: Duke, Miami

Close: North Carolina St., North Carolina

Bubble: Virginia, Maryland

 

Maryland at Virginia on March 10 could decide which team gets in and which goes to the NIT.  We see no lower seeded team capable of pulling off three or four upsets in three days.

 

Atlantic Sun (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Mercer

FloridaGulfCoast is a top contender

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: This league lacks a lot of strength at the top, and any of the eight seeds can win this tournament.  However, Mercer is the host team, so the Bears should be favored.

 

Big East (7-9 bids)

Locks: Louisville, Syracuse, Georgetown, Marquette

Close: Pittsburgh, Notre Dame

Bubble: Cincinnati, Villanova, St. John’s

 

Pitt and Notre Dame need maybe two more wins to become locks.  Cincinnati needs to win two of its final three games and then at least once in the conference tournament.  Villanova and St. John’s must get to the quarterfinals of the conference tournament, and may need to advance one round further

 

Connecticut is ineligible for the automatic bid and conference tournament due to low academic scores.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Providence is peaking at the right time.  The Friars have won five of six conference games including wins over Villanova, Cincinnati, and Notre Dame.

 

Big Sky (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Montana

WeberState is a co-favorite in this league.  We give Montana a 45% chance of winning the bid, WeberState a 40% chance, and the rest of the league about 15%.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Montana State can play with either of the two co-favorites

 

Big South (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Charleston Southern

High Point and UNC-Asheville are top contenders

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Coastal Carolina hosts the conference tournament

 

Big Ten (7 or 8 bids)

Locks: Indiana, Michigan, Michigan St., Wisconsin, Ohio St.

Close: Minnesota, Illinois

Bubble: Iowa

Iowa needs to win three of their final four games and once in the Big Ten Tournament to move high enough on the bubble to have a legitimate chance at a bid.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: None, one of the top seven will win the tournament, with the most likely winner to come from between Indiana, Michigan, Michigan St. and Ohio St.

 

Big 12 (4-6 bids)

Locks: Kansas, Kansas St., Oklahoma St.

Close: None

Bubble: Oklahoma, Iowa St., Baylor

Oklahoma will be close with two more wins and in with three more wins.  IowaState needs at least three more wins to be in the upper part of the bubble and probably four more wins if there are some upset tournament winners.  Baylor needs to win four more times with at least one over either Kansas or KansasState, or get to the Big 12 Tournament Championship Game.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Not this year.  Kansas, Kansas State, or Oklahoma State will cut down the nets in KC.  Look for the Jayhawks to be motivated and win this one with relative ease.

 

Big West (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Long Beach St.

Pacific and UC-Irvine are top contenders

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Cal-Poly.  The Mustangs have won four of five and six of nine.  Cal Poly beat the top two teams at home and took Long Beach State to the wire on the road.

 

Colonial (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Northeastern

George Mason is a top contender

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: With Towson and Georgia State among the four teams not eligible for the conference tournament, Delaware is the only team that could come from off the pace and win the automatic bid.

 

Conference USA (1 or 2 bids)

Lock: Memphis

Close: None

Bubble: Southern Miss.

Southern Miss must win at least two of their final three games and then play Memphis a good game in the CUSA Tournament Championship Game to have any chance of earning an at-large bid.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: We do not see any team defeating Memphis.

 

Horizon (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Valparaiso

Detroit is the top contender

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: This tournament is rather open, and neither Valpo nor Detroit can be considered heavy favorites.  Even teams like eighth place Loyola could sneak into the championship game.

 

Ivy (1 bid)

Projected Conference Champion: Harvard

Princeton is top contender

 

Harvard visits Princeton this Friday night, and if the Tigers can win, we could be looking at a playoff game with the two top teams finishing 12-2.

 

MAAC (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Niagara

Loyola (MD), Canisius, and Iona are top contenders

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Rider, Fairfield, Iona.  This is a very competitive league, and it really wouldn’t be that much of an upset for any of these three teams to win.  There are seven teams capable of cutting down the nets in Springfield, Mass, on March 11.

 

Mid-American (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Akron

Ohio U is a top contender but has no chance as an at-large bid after the Bracket Buster loss to Belmont

 

Note: Toledo is not eligible for the conference tournament due to low academic scores

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Buffalo, Kent St.  We are actually having to dig deep to come up with a possible upset winner here.  Akron has dominated this league this year, and even Ohio would be an upset winner over the Zips.

 

MEAC (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Norfolk St.

UNC-Central and Savannah St. are top contenders

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Hampton and Morgan St.  Both teams contended with Savannah State.

 

Missouri Valley (2 or 3 bids)

Locks: None

Close: Wichita St., Creighton

Bubble: Indiana St.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: None.  One of the top three seeds will win this tournament.  None of the rest are talented enough to pull off two consecutive upsets away from their home arena.

 

Mountain West (3 to 5 bids)

Locks: New Mexico

Close: Colorado St., UNLV

Bubble: San Diego St., Boise St.

ColoradoState and New Mexico played one of the most exciting games of the season this past Saturday, but when the Lobos won in Ft.Collins, it prevented CSU from moving up to a lock.  The Rams will get in short of an implosion.  UNLV will get in if they don’t lose to the two second division teams left on their home schedule.  San DiegoState needs to get to the semifinals of the conference tournament to move up into the high bubble.  BoiseState has four regular season games with three coming against ColoradoState, UNLV, and San DiegoState.  The Broncos need to win two of these plus the other game against Nevada and then win at least once in the conference tournament

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner:Air Force, Wyoming.  The Falcons and Cowboys will be tough opponents against any other MWC team.  Both teams have a nasty style of play that gives the opposition headaches.

 

Northeast (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Robert Morris

Bryant, Long Island, and Wagner are the top contenders.  The NEC plays its tournament games at the higher seed, so home-court advantage is very important.  The four top contenders should make it to the semifinal round.  LIU has dominated this tournament in recent years, but they have a first-year coach, and the Blackbirds have had a tough time adjusting.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Quinnipiac, but only if the Bobcats finish in the top four and get to host an opening round game.

 

Ohio Valley (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Belmont

The Bruins would be a bubble team if they lost in the OVC Tournament Championship Round, but their resume is lacking if they must get in as an at-large.  This league has sent two teams to the Dance in the past, and Belmont won the Bracket Buster game against Ohio U, but the Bruins only have one top 50 win.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Murray St., Eastern Kentucky, Tennessee St. These three teams should be listed as top contenders, but we project Belmont as a prohibitive favorite in the conference tournament, which will be played in their hometown.

 

Pac-12 (3 to 7 bids)

Locks: Arizona

Close: Oregon, UCLA

Bubble: Colorado, California, Arizona St., Stanford

Short of total collapses, Oregon and UCLA will get invitations.  California closes with three home games and should be 13-5 in league play when the tournament convenes.  If so, the Bears will be in the Dance.  Colorado is on the outside-looking in with a tough final regular season schedule.  We expect the Buffaloes to be no better than 10-8 and maybe 9-9 when the tournament starts.  ArizonaState finishes the regular season on the road against UCLA, USC, and Arizona.  We see the Sun Devils dropping to 9-9, which means they will have to at least make it to the championship round in the conference tournament to have a chance.  Stanford has basically played themselves out of contention and probably needs to win the conference tournament.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Colorado has the best shot of winning the conference tournament from the back of the pack.

 

Patriot (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Bucknell

Top Contender: Lehigh

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: None.  Bucknell has the talent to advance to the round of 32 and compete for a Sweet 16 berth.  Lehigh and Lafayette should meet in the semifinals with the chance to face the Bison for the conference tournament title. 

 

Southeastern (2 to 7 teams)

Locks: Florida

Close: Kentucky, Missouri

Bubble: Ole Miss, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee

Kentucky Missouri could have moved to lock status with a win at Kentucky, but the overtime loss keeps them in the close range.  The Tigers will need to advance to the semifinals of the conference tournament to guarantee a spot in the Big Dance.  Kentucky closes the regular season at home on Senior Day against Florida, and we believe the Wildcats will win this game and probably finish 13-5 in league play.  We can see no possibility where a 13-conference win UK team would be excluded from the Field of 68.  Ole Miss has lost five of their last eight games, and the Rebels have just one top 50 win.  They must get to the semifinals of the conference tournament to have any chance at an at-large bid.  Alabama also has just one top 50 win, and the Crimson Tide has two tough road games in the regular season.  They too must get to the semifinals to have any chance at an at-large bid.  Tennessee has two top 50 wins, and the Volunteers have a chance to put themselves on the high bubble if they can upset Florida at home Tuesday night.  If they beat Florida and then conclude the regular season with a win over Missouri, they should be in with one conference tournament win.  Arkansas has two top 25 wins, but the Razorbacks need to prove they can win away from Bud Walton Arena.  Arky needs to win at LSU or at Missouri and then get to the semifinals of the conference tournament to have a shot at an at-large bid

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: None.  The bottom half of the league has difficulty winning two games in a row, let alone four or five.  The conference tournament winner will be one of the seven teams listed above.

 

Southern (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Davidson

The Bracket Buster win at home over Montana did little to help boost the Wildcats’ chances of getting onto the bubble.  Davidson will be NIT-bound if they do not win the automatic bid.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: College of Charleston. 

 

Southland (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Stephen F. Austin

Top Contender: Northwestern State

SFA won at Long BeachState in the Bracket Buster, but the Lumberjacks are not close to the bubble.  They could keep winning to the conference tournament championship round and lost that one to finish 28-4, and all they would have to show for it would be a first-round home game in the NIT.

 

Texas A&M-Corpus Christie is not eligible for the conference tournament.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Oral Roberts

 

SWAC (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Southern

Top Contender: Texas Southern

The top two teams play at TSU Thursday night, and the winner should be the number one seed in the conference tournament.  Third place Arkansas-Pine Bluff and MississippiValley are not eligible due to academic scores.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: None.  Either Southern or Texas Southern should win this tournament, and if Southern wins, the SWAC could avoid the opening round in Dayton.

 

Summit (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: South Dakota St.

Top Contenders: North Dakota St., Western Illinois

The conference tournament is in Sioux Falls, a mere 55 miles from the SDSU campus.  The Jackrabbits won the tournament last year, and they are a solid favorite to repeat.  SDSU has the best player you may not know.  Nate Wolters averages 23 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 5.5 assists per game, and he scored 53 points on February 7 at Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne.

 

Nebraska-Omaha is not eligible as they are in transition to full D1 status.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Oakland

 

Sunbelt (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Middle Tennessee

The Blue Raiders are 0-3 against the top 50, and for now, they are not on the bubble.  They ride a 14-game winning streak into their final two regular season games, and if they win both to finish 27-4, they could move to the bubble if they lost in the conference championship round.

 

Top Contenders: South Alabama

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Arkansas St.

 

West Coast (1 or 2 bids)

Lock: Gonzaga

Close: None

Bubble: St. Mary’s

Gonzaga could be looking at a number two seed if they win out and a number three seed if they lose a game.  St. Mary’s is in the top half of the bubble, but the Gaels have just won top 50 win, which came at home against Creighton in the Bracket Buster this past Saturday.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: Brigham Young

 

WAC (1 bid)

Projected Tournament Winner: Louisiana Tech

Top Contender: Denver

LT has won 16 games in a row, but the Bulldogs close the regular season at New MexicoState and at Denver and will probably have their winning streak snapped.  Still, they are the commanding favorite in the conference tournament.

 

Possible Conference Tournament Upset Winner: New Mexico St.

 

Conference Tournament Information

Conference Dates Location Teams In Tourney
AtlanticCoast March 14-17 Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, NC 12
America East March 8-9 & 16 SEFCU Arena, Guilderland, NY (Albany), Championship Game at Higher Seed 8 (Boston U not eligible)
Atlantic 10 March 14-17 BarclaysCenter, Brooklyn 13
Atlantic Sun March 6-9 Hawkins Arena, Macon, GA 8
Big East March 12-16 Madison Square Garden, New York City 14  UConn not eligible
Big Sky March 14-16 Regular Season Champion’s Court 11
Big South March 5-10 HTCCenter, Conway, SC (Coastal Car.) 12
Big Ten March 14-17 United Center, Chicago 12
Big 12 March 13-16 Sprint Center, Kansas City 10
Big West March 14-16 Honda Center, Anaheim, CA Top 8 (UC-Riverside not eligible)
Colonial March 9-11 Richmond Coliseum, Richmond, VA 7 (UNCW, Towson, Ga. St, & ODU not eligible)
Conference USA March 13-16 BOKCenter, Tulsa, OK 11 (Central Fla. Not eligible)
Great West March 13-16 JonesConvocationCenter, Chicago 5 (Winner receives auto bid to CIT)
Horizon March 5-12 Regular Season Champion’s Court (Championship Game at Higher Seed) 9
Ivy The Ivy League has no conference tournament but plays off any ties for first place
Metro Atlantic March 7-11 MassMutualCenter, Springfield, MA 10
Mid-American March 11-16 Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, OH (First Round at Higher Seeds) 11 (Toledo not eligible)
MEAC March 11-16 Norfolk Scope, Norfolk, VA 13
MissouriValley March 7-10 ScottradeCenter, St. Louis 10
Mountain West March 7-10 Thomas & MackCenter, Las Vegas 9
Northeast March 6, 9, & 12 All Games at Higher Seed 8 (Bottom 4 Teams Not In Tourney)
OhioValley March 6-9 Municipal Auditorium, Nashville Top 8 (Jacksonville St. is ineligible)
Pac-12 March 13-16 MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, NV (Las Vegas area) 12
Patriot March 6, 9, & 13 All Games at Higher Seed 8
SEC March 13-17 Bridgestone Arena, Nashville 14
Southern March 8-11 US CellularCenter, Asheville, NC 12
Southland March 13-16 MerrillCenter, Katy, TX (Houston Area) Top 8 (Texas A&M CC not eligible)
SWAC March 12-16 SpecialEventsCenter, Garland, TX 8 (AR-PineBluff & MSValley ineligible)
Summit March 9-12 Sioux Falls Arena, Sioux Falls, SD 8 (Neb-Omaha not eligible)
Sunbelt March 8-11 Summit Arena & Convention Center Court, Hot Springs, AR (two venues) 11
West Coast March 6-11 Orleans Arena, Las Vegas 9
WAC March 12-16 Orleans Arena, Las Vegas 10

 

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