Fans anxiously watched television or waited to get a notification from ESPN saying the brackets are out.
It was Selection Sunday, baby.
The day began with anticipation and ended with heartbreak for the NCAA Men’s basketball teams who didn’t make the final field of 68. The four play-in games on Tuesday and Wednesday determined the 11 seed in the South region, the 16 seed in the Midwest region and the 11 and 16 seed in the East region.
It’s mind boggling that four teams could fight for the two open 11 seed spots where teams ranked below them in brackets have their position set. But are the teams in the correct spot when the seedings are announced?
It’s an absolute shame that this is happening in the most exciting time of year for the sport.
The dreams of players have to be at an all-time high when announced their dream of cutting down the nets as champions is near.
The seedings in this year’s tournament bring more questions to how teams are selected.
For example, the four top seeds in every region should have won their conference tournament, right?
Nope! The North Carolina Tar Heels and the Kansas Jayhawks didn’t win their conference tournaments.
In the latest Coaches/Associated Press poll, only three teams out of the top 10 won their conference championship.
Although the top 10 consisted of teams from six different conferences, the top four seeds in the tournament should have been given to conference champions.
The ACC is the strongest conference with having nine teams in the field of 68 teams.
They also have six out of the top 25 teams in the last ranking done by coaches/ AP poll.
That isn’t far far from the two conferences with seven bids, but that is a lot for one conference to have compared to 22 other conferences with only one team playing in the big dance.
There are 32 total conferences in Division 1 Men’s College Basketball. How does the committee deal with all the decisions to seed the teams?
Overall, they state that the seedings are based on strength of schedule, ranking power index and the basketball power index.
They are biased on the strength of schedule most of the time obviously favoring the teams in the ACC, Big 10, Big 12, Pacific 12 and the Southeastern Conference, or known as the Power 5 conferences.
There is no question that the land is ruled by those five conferences, but the other conferences should get seeded higher in the tournament. There shouldn’t be teams that won their conference tournament playing for a chance to get in the final 64 for the official tournament to get started like Kansas State, Mount Saint Mary’s, the University of New Orleans and Wake Forest are.
Although the smaller schools haven’t played as strong as a schedule as certain teams, they should use the strength of schedule for all the conference champion winners and then seed them based on strength of schedule.
That still leaves the opportunity for the best 36 teams to use the RPI, which the NCAA tournament selection committee uses as a tool for grading teams.
It can also use the RPI with the BPI, which is based on being the best predictor on how a team will fare in their games going forward along with the strength of schedule.
Nobody will fully agree with the seedings, but it brings up the best arguments and debates of what team is snubbed and overrated in the tournament.
Bring on Cinderella.