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NCAA Tournament Berth Update 3/5

Welcome to March! Less than 10 days until Selection Sunday! Questions still remain about which teams are safely in the field, and who has some work to do still. We have broken down that information, by conference, below. Take a look and let us know your thoughts!


Lock: could theoretically lose out and still make the field

Should be In: would take a major collapse to miss the field, have a solid resume to this point

Bubble: fall somewhere in the 7-9 seed range all the way to just outside the field. Are in, or just barely out, but not quite safe yet

Almost Flat Bubble: have not been eliminated from at-large contention yet, but are just about in “win out” territory. 5% or less odds to make the field



Locks: Virginia, Miami, Duke

Should Be In: None

Bubble: Pittsburgh, NC State, North Carolina

Almost Flat Bubble: Clemson

Pittsburgh and NC State are within our last 8 teams in today. Cannot afford a bad loss in the ACC Tournament, and a quality win would make things more comfortable. North Carolina needs at least two wins, as does Clemson. Possibly more. Anyone else needs to win the ACC.


Locks: Houston

Should Be In: Memphis

Bubble: None

Almost Flat Bubble: None

Memphis is in a good spot. Tough loss today to Houston that would have locked it in, but avoiding a bad loss in the AAC will be enough to get in.

Big 12

Locks: Kansas, Baylor, Texas, Kansas State, Iowa State, TCU, West Virginia

Should Be In: None

Bubble: Oklahoma State

Almost Flat Bubble: None

Oklahoma State is either just barely in, or just barely out depending on who you ask. A loss to Oklahoma next week and Oklahoma State will be in the NIT, a win keeps the bubble hopes alive with a chance at a quality win to make it official. Texas Tech and Oklahoma will need to win the Big 12 to get in.

Big East

Locks: Xavier, Marquette, UConn, Creighton

Should Be In: Providence

Bubble: None

Almost Flat Bubble: Seton Hall

Providence, with multiple Q1A wins, is likely okay, but it would be advised to avoid a bad loss next week in case bid thieves arrive. If Seton Hall makes the BE final, we will re-evaluate, but would recommend winning the tournament.

Big Ten

Locks: Purdue, Indiana, Northwestern, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan State, Maryland

Should Be In: Rutgers

Bubble: Wisconsin, Penn State, Michigan

Almost Flat Bubble: None

Rutgers loss to Minnesota made this dicey, but a win, right now, would make it feel very good for its prospects so they remain "should be in". Penn State is in the field today, and can feel much better about lock status with a win next week. Wisconsin and Michigan are on the outside looking in needing multiple wins next week.

Mountain West

Locks: San Diego State

Should Be In: Boise State

Bubble: Nevada, Utah State

Almost Flat Bubble: None

If Boise State avoids a bad loss next week, the Broncos will be in. Nevada and Utah State will sweat out Selection Sunday unless either picks up another quality win or two next week. Everyone else needs to win the conference tournament.


Locks: Arizona, UCLA

Should Be In: USC

Bubble: Arizona State, Oregon

Almost Flat Bubble: None

USC, similar to a few above, just needs to avoid a bad loss next week, and then the Trojans will be good. Arizona State and Oregon are outside of the field today, and need multiple wins to get back in.


Locks: Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas A&M, Missouri, Arkansas, Auburn

Should Be In: None

Bubble: Mississippi State, Vanderbilt

Almost Flat Bubble: None

Arkansas and Auburn are playing each other in the opening round of the SEC tournament. Since a loss would not hurt at all in that scenario, both Auburn and Arkansas are locked in. Mississippi State is in the field, one of the last six teams in, but it would be advised to beat Florida at least next week. Vanderbilt will need multiple wins to have a shot.


Locks: Gonzaga, Saint Marys

Should Be In: None

Bubble: None

Almost Flat Bubble: None

This conference has been this way for awhile. Two locks, any other team will need to win the WCC.

Other Mid-Majors

Locks: None

Should Be In: FAU

Bubble: Oral Roberts, Charleston

Almost Flat Bubble: None

Would be advised for Oral Roberts and Charleston to win their respective conference tournaments. But, we will evaluate each against the bubble thoroughly should they lose in the title game. FAU is a 99% lock, but don't want to jinx the Owls in case FAU loses to the 8/9 seed. Even in that case, it would take some extreme chaos. Owls in the best position of any "should be in" team today.

Thanks for reading! DM @TBracketology with questions about the bubble or any other CBB questions!


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