In or out? The conversation is a lot more real after Michigan’s buzzer-beating win over Indiana. The Wolverines might have played their way into the NCAA tournament, but it’s far from a guarantee.
Notable bracketologists have Michigan hovering around the precious final spots in the NCAA tournament with a trip to Dayton for a play-in game looking like a real possibility.
A win over Purdue this afternoon — which would be Michigan’s fifth against a top-30 opponent — could be pivotal, but a loss could leave the Wolverines watching, waiting, and hoping for the best on Sunday evening.
Michigan’s resume is tough to define by conventional bracketing norms. The Wolverines only have four wins over top-100 teams — an ugly red flag by most guidelines — but those four wins are all against top-30 teams in the RPI. There aren’t many bubble teams that have beaten the sort of teams that Michigan has knocked off. As for their 11 losses, only one has come against teams outside of the top-50, at #71 Ohio State.
- Record: 22-11
- RPI: 56
- SOS: 48
- Home: 13-4
- Away: 4-6
- Neutral: 5-1
- vs. RPI top-50: 4-10
- vs. RPI top-100: 4-11
Bracket projections will be updated throughout the morning. Several were last updated at some time on Saturday. Our list was last updated on Mar. 12 at 12:02 p.m.
- Joe Lunardi/ESPN: First Four Out (Mar. 12th)
- Jerry Palm/CBS: Last Four In vs. Wichita State (Mar. 12th)
- Yahoo Big Board: 11 Seed (Mar. 12)
- Sports Illustrated: First Four vs. Syracuse (Mar. 12)
- Fox Sports: First Four In vs. St. Joe’s (Mar. 12)
- Crashing the Dance: First Team Out (Mar. 12)
- Assembly Call: Out (Mar. 12)
- Bracket Matrix: Last Team In (Mar. 12)
- 1-3-1 Sports: Last Four In (Mar. 12)
- Bracketville: First Four Out (Mar. 12)
- Michigan State (26-5, 15 RPI): Can Michigan State earn a 1-seed? The Spartans might have to win the Big Ten Tournament to do just that, but it’s tough to question that with how they’re playing. Today’s re-match with Maryland should be a good one.
- Purdue (25-7, 16 RPI): Purdue sits around the 4 seed line and is taking care of business in the Big Ten Tournament to cement its seed. Four top-50 wins, nine top-100 wins and an RPI in the top-20, about the only area where Purdue’s resume is lacking is on the road.
- Indiana (25-7, 22 RPI): Indiana cruised to an outright Big Ten Championship only to be knocked off in its first game of the Big Ten Tournament by Michigan. The Hoosiers were probably playing for a 3-seed in Indianapolis, but now are probably somewhere between the 4 and 5 lines.
- Maryland (23-7, 13 RPI): Maryland is hovering around the 5-seed line on most bracket projections, but the Terps have a golden opportunity against Michigan State. We’ve seen the selection committee overcompensate with seeding adjustments due to conference tournament results and a win could propel Maryland up the s-curve.
- Iowa (21-10, 28 RPI): Iowa lost 5 of its last 6 games to close the season and its anyone’s guess as to how far the Hawkeyes will slide down the s-curve. Iowa’s seniors managed to win only one Big Ten Tournament game in four years — vs. Northwestern in 2013.
- Wisconsin (20-12, 41 RPI): Wisconsin should still be comfortably in the tournament with quality wins at Maryland, at Iowa, vs. Michigan State and vs. Indiana, but an early exit from the Big Ten Tournament and those bad early season losses should limit the Badgers’ seed.
- Michigan (21-11, 56 RPI): Michigan doesn’t seem to be as ‘in’ as it would hope after a statement win over Indiana. The Wolverines are still out of many bracket projections and appear to be headed to Dayton as a best-case scenario. A win over Purdue could do the trick to push Michigan into the field once and for all.
Potential Bid Thieves
Memphis and Tulane will face off in the American semifinals today which means one will get a chance to play for an auto-bid. Michigan and other bubble teams badly need Temple or potentially UConn, another bubble team, to take care of business on the other side of the bracket and win the tournament. Davidson is also still alive in the Atlantic 10 tournament and could be another candidate to snatch a bid away on Selection Sunday. Bubble fans probably want Dayton to win the league, with VCU and St. Joseph’s still on the bubble to a certain extent.