Thursday, February 16, 2006


With apologies to the late Walter Payton, "sweetness" might describe the feeling you get when your team survives the first weekend of the NCAA tournament. These are the teams favored to make it there. (Florida and N.C. State replace Michigan State and Georgetown from last week's seeds. Comments follow.)

Washington Regional
1. Duke: DC-bound if there's no clear Big East champ.
2. Tennessee: Class of the SEC, RPI of 3. Imagine that.
3. Iowa: Would be a 2 if not for Northwestern.
4. West Virginia: Would be a 3 if not for Seton Hall.

Atlanta Regional
1. Memphis: Needs to win out to remain here.
2. Connecticut: If you recall, the 2004 champs were a 2 seed.
3. George Washington: Great record and story, not so great RPI.
4. Florida: Makes the cut after the LSU win.

Minneapolis Regional
1. Villanova: Alone atop the best conference.
2. Ohio State: The only Big Ten team with no bad losses.
3. Pittsburgh: Can't rest at Marquette this weekend.
4. Illinois: Face unpredictable Indiana and Michigan next.

Oakland Regional
1. Texas: Misstep against Oklahoma not looking so bad.
2. Gonzaga: Still a 2 seed by default.
3. UCLA: Ugly sweep by Washington, but who else is there?
4. N.C. State: Safely 2nd in ACC, despite loss at GT.

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