Happy Wednesday, and welcome to week #3 of WNUR Sports’ Bracketology. 

The political reason for why this week’s update is out today and not Monday is that we wanted to include the handful of impactful games that were played early this week.

The actual reason is that it’s the middle of a busy quarter at Northwestern, and I unfortunately don’t receive college credit for bracketology.

Thanks to another wild week of women’s basketball, our bracket saw all sorts of change once again. Just as they did last week, Northwestern dropped in these week’s projections (this time to literally the last at-large team in the field) following a 16-point home loss to Penn State on Sunday.

Eight new teams made the bracket this week, while three once-included at-large teams now find themselves on the wrong side of our bubble.

Before we reveal this week’s brackets, a weekly reminder of six ground rules to keep in mind:

  1. Weekly projections are based off of team’s performance and résumé up to that week. Projecting future success is not the goal of this exercise.
  2. This week’s brackets reflect games as of Tuesday, February 7.
  3. Automatic bid-receiving conference champions (indicated between these guys on the bracket) are the team in first place of the conference at the time of that week’s bracketology update. 
  4. Green and red arrows show a team’s week-by-week movement in our projections.
  5. Unlike the men’s tournament, the women’s tournament features the opportunity for teams seeded one through four to host first-weekend games. Therefore, the difference between a four and a five-seed in the women’s tournament is a sizable one.
  6.  Stanford will not be able to host first and second-round games because the Pac-12 Gymnastics Championship is slated to take over Maples Pavillion on March 18. The Cardinal is currently a three-seed in our projections, so a five, six, or seven-seed will likely be the beneficiary of the opportunity to host first weekend games in Stanford’s place. 

Now, onto this week’s update. We’ll begin, as always, with the Bridgeport region:

bridgeport-final-3

Heading west, we hit Northwestern’s projected region, Lexington:

lexington-final-3

To Oklahoma City we go:

okc-final-3

And lastly, to Stockton:

stockton-final-3

Bids by conference:

SEC (8)

ACC (7)

Pac-12 (7) 

Big 12 (5)

Big Ten (5)

American (3)

Big East (3)

Horizon (2)

Last Four In:

West Virginia

Green Bay

Michigan State

Northwestern

First Four Out: 

Tulane

Georgia Tech

Iowa

Virginia Tech

Longest travel: 

  1. Oregon to Florida State– Eugene, OR to Tallahassee, FL– 2854 miles
  2. NC State to Washington – Raleigh, NC to Seattle, WA – 2848 miles
  3. Elon to Oregon State – Elon, NC to Corvallis, OR – 2821 miles

Upcoming impact games:

Louisville @ Virginia Tech, 6 p.m. Thursday

Michigan State @ Iowa, 6 p.m. Thursday

Syracuse @ Duke, 6 p.m. Friday

Northwestern @ Indiana, 11 a.m. Saturday (89.3 FM Evanston-Chicago or WNURSports.com)

Maryland @ Michigan State, 1 p.m. Sunday

UCLA @ Oregon State, 3 p.m. Sunday 

 

See you next week!

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