Fans of Arizona and Virginia, you’ll want to look away for a moment.
History says that No. 1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament that don’t dominate a 16 seed in the first round don’t fare well way the rest of the way. First, the bad news:
The history from 2006-2013: Six 1 or 2 seeds won their 1st-round games by less than 10 points. None of those teams made the Final Four.
— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) March 21, 2014
Arizona, a No. 1 seed, beat Weber State, a #16 seed, 68-59 Friday. The Wildcats gave up 13 offensive rebounds, shot 56 percent from the line, and let the Big Sky Tourney champs hang around long enough to make it moderately interesting.
Virginia, a No. 1 seed, was able to pull away from 16th-seeded Costal Carolina to register a 70-59 win. Double digits, at least.
And more bad news, from the Wall Street Journal:
A No. 1 seed struggling with a tournament doormat is an even worse omen. No. 1 seeds that make the Final Four win by an average of 28.5 in the round of 64, compared with 24.8 for all one-seeds. Last year, Gonzaga struggled to put away Southern in its first game and then got bounced in its next game.
Wichita State, the other No. 1 seed playing Sunday, won handily, by 27 points over 16th-seeded Cal Poly. Of course, the Shockers play Kentucky (2:45 pm, CBS), by far the toughest opponent any of the top seeds have to play today. Arizona is in the nightcap (9:40 pm, TNT) against Gonzaga. Virginia plays Memphis at night (8:40 pm, TNT).