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NCAA Power 16 Rankings

Mon, 03/11/2013 - 10:36pm

Here’s a switch for the final regular-season “Power 16”:

I’ve rearranged the teams a bit into the order in which I believe the NCAA Tournament should be seeded if the brackets were released on Monday.

I’ve also manipulated the clubs in the 16 so that teams from the same conference wouldn’t meet until a possible Final Four contest.

Of course, the real deal comes out next Sunday evening, rendering all of those “mock brackets” and “projected seeds” as moot as my need to ever plan for retirement.

Rank (Last Week)
Record
Comment
1. Duke (3)
27-4

The Blue Devils are unbeaten on the season with Ryan Kelly in their lineup. Getting to the ACC Tourney final Sunday should give them the overall No. 1 seed.

2. Indiana (2)
26-5
The Hoosiers should be no worse than the No. 2 overall seed based upon winning the hellaciously difficult Big Ten Conference race, wrapped up with a stunning victory in Ann Arbor on Sunday.
3. Louisville (4)
26-5
The Cardinals may have shared the Big East regular-season title but Rick Pitino’s squad looked like the conference’s best right now.
4. Gonzaga (1)
31-2
The Bulldogs should secure a #1 seed after defeating Saint Mary’s in the WCC final Monday night in Las Vegas.
5. Kansas (5)
26-5
Did the thumping in Waco end any possibility of the Jayhawks getting a No. 1 seed? In all likelihood, the answer is yes.
6. Georgetown (11)
24-5
Have I mentioned lately how impressed I’ve been with Otto Porter – and the Hoyas – this season? For the time being, at least, he’s in possession of the No. 1 slot on my John R. Wooden Award ballot.
7. Miami (6)
24-6
It’s been a dandy season for the Hurricanes, who might be back in No. 1 seed conversation if they’re playing for the ACC Tournament title Sunday.
8. Ohio State (NR)
23-7
All things considered, the Buckeyes may be playing as well as they have all season right now.
9. Florida (9)
24-6
Sure, the Gators can lay claim to being the best the SEC can serve up. But if not quite as sold as some others apparently are that this is a “Final Four-caliber team.”
10. Michigan State (8)
24-7
The Spartans are among four teams from the Big Ten I feel are fully capable of winning the national championship.
11. Michigan (7)
25-6
How long with the sight of that ball seemingly frozen on that rim before rolling off hang in the minds of Wolverines everywhere?
12. Marquette (NR)
23-7
Buzz Williams better be the Big East Coach of the Year.
13. Syracuse (15)
23-8
Where in the heck has the Orange offense disappeared to?
14. Oklahoma State (12)
23-7
Marcus Smart, announced as Big 12 Player of the Year on Sunday, is, in fact, a lock to be the national Freshman of the Year.
15. Pittsburgh (NR)
24-7

The Panthers rate as a nice “sleeper” choice to win the final Big East Tournament (in its current format, that is).

16. New Mexico (14)
26-5
A MWC Tourney title, coupled with that regular-season crown, puts the Lobos in 3 seed discussion.

Possible 5 to 8 seeds (alphabetical): Arizona 24-6, Boise State 21-9, Butler 24-7, Colorado State 24-7, Creighton 27-7, Kansas State 25-6, Memphis 27-4, Missouri 22-9, North Carolina 22-9, North Carolina State 22-9, Notre Dame 23-8, Saint Louis 24-6, UCLA 23-8, Virginia Commonwealth 24-7, Wichita State 26-8 and Wisconsin 21-10.

TOP PERFORMANCES OF MARCH 4-10

TEAMS

Boise State. The Broncos edged San Diego State by four points in Boise for their fifth win over its final six regular-season MWC games to enhance their hopes for an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament if one is needed.

Liberty. The Flames, who lost their first eight games and were 11-20 in the regulars season, won four consecutive Big South Conference Tournament games to become only the second club with 20 losses to ever earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament.

Louisville. The Cardinals shared the Big East title with Georgetown and Marquette after extending its winning streak to seven since it lost that five-OT affair at Notre Dame.

Ohio State. The Buckeyes earned the No. 2 seed in the Big Ten Tournament with wins over Indiana and Illinois.

UCLA. The days after being hammered by last-place Washington State in Pullman, the Bruins edged Washington for their first win in Seattle since 2004 and picked up an outright Pac 12 title when Oregon was beaten by host Utah a few minutes later in Seattle.

Gorgui DiengGorgui DiengPLAYERS

Siyani Chambers (Harvard). The freshman guard scored 32 points (16 in each game) on only 15 shots from the field to go with eight assists and only three turnovers in 74 minutes as the Crimson knocked off Columbia and Cornell to clinch the Ivy League championship and the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

Aaron Craft (Ohio State). The junior point guard totaled 29 points (11 of 17 from the field), eight rebounds, 10 assists and seven assists to help the Buckeyes close in impressive fashion (Big Ten wins over Indiana and Illinois).

Seth Curry (Duke). Who, who began his collegiate career at Liberty (where he played for now-Virginia assistant Ritchie McKay), scored 20 points each in ACC victories at home against Virginia Tech and in Chapel Hill against North Carolina.

Gorgui Dieng (Louisville). The junior center sparked the Cardinals to home victories over Cincinnati and Notre Dame to secure Coach Rick Pitino’s club a share of the regular-season Big East title, producing 31 points, 20 rebounds and a half-dozen blocked shots in the process.

Pierre Jackson (Baylor). The senior point guard scored 50 points to go with nine rebounds, 18 assists, three steals and five turnovers as the Bears split a pair of Big 12 games with Texas and Kansas.

Frank Burlison has been covering hoops for 30+ years for a variety of publications.

Follow Frank on twitter @FrankieBur. Also make sure to follow his website at www.burlisononbasketball.com. College coaching staffs interested in Burlison’s scouting service should contact him at [email protected]

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