Here are this week’s projections. These projections are not simply based on current results, but also project the future schedule (and how the committee’s preferred RPI might turn out, thanks to RPI Forecast).
Teams that have seen their win projection improve since last week’s rankings are highlighted in red. Those that have declined are in blue. (This doesn’t necessarily mean that they have changed seeding projections).
Kansas’ win projection did not improve (though they are closer to 27 wins than 25 now), but they solidified the likelihood of a #1 seed with a big road win at Kentucky on Saturday. It did improve their projected record against the RPI Top 50 (since it added an actual win where they were an underdog), and the committee will compare top wins among the teams vying in the first four seed lines.
Kentucky, meanwhile, probably lost any opportunity for a top seed, barring running the table and lots of chaos. They have now lost at home to both Kansas and UCLA.
There’s not much separating the teams on the 5-seed line and the top of the 6-seed line from moving up a couple of seed lines, and plenty to still be determined.
Northwestern has continued to surge and has now climbed to a 7-seed, while others in the Big Ten have faltered. USC also got a big jump thanks to the win over UCLA.
At the bottom of the at-large pool, there is plenty to play for in the major conferences. There will likely be a glut of teams in the 17-19 win range, and it’s possible we see some at-larges with 17 wins and a tough schedule get the nod over others. Indiana is still holding on, while Michigan and Michigan State both make this week’s projection. In the Big 12, Oklahoma State has been surging after a tough start in conference. If they can get near .500 in conference play, they will get in. The ACC may be Bubble Central, and the winners may be those that can pull the most upsets against the Top 6 teams in the conference.
IN THIS WEEK: Oklahoma State, Michigan, Clemson, Miami
OUT THIS WEEK: Utah, California, TCU, Georgia
FIRST EIGHT OUT: Utah, California, TCU, Tennessee, Georgetown, Seton Hall, Houston, Ohio State