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Predicting the Big 12’s Seven NCAA Tournament Seeds

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-San Diego Practice

My predictions for where the seven Big 12 teams will be seeded in the NCAA Tournament, now that the Big 12 Tournament is complete, with the Texas Longhorns the champion.

NO. 1 SEED

BAYLOR

Even though the Bears lost in the semifinals of the Big 12 Tournament, I think the Bears will be a No. 1 seed. They’ve never wavered as a No. 1 seed in both CBSSports.com and ESPN.com Bracketology. The one thing I am curious about now is whether this means that Baylor could end up on the same side of the bracket as Gonzaga. The Bears and the Bulldogs have been on opposites sides all season. That would mean the difference between a potential national semifinal meeting or a national championship game meeting, should both teams do as well in the NCAA Tournament as we think they will.

NO. 2 SEED

TEXAS

There was a time when Texas was a No. 2 seed on both boards, and as the Longhorns entered the Big 12 Tournament, they were a solid No. 3 seed. Wins over Texas Tech and Oklahoma State, I think, put the Longhorns on a solid No. 2 seed line. I think the committee is going to look at their recent play, having won six of their last seven games, including wins over four ranked teams. The one loss was a regular-season loss to Texas Tech, and the Longhorns avenged that in the Big 12 Tournament.

 

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NO. 3 SEED

OKLAHOMA STATE

Going into Saturday’s Big 12 title game, the Cowboys had risen to a No. 2 seed on some boards. Texas cooled them off just a bit, and I think the committee will take that into account. One also has to consider all of the shuffling around in the tournament field due to conference tournaments. These are the seeds where those unexpected semifinal losses, such as Michigan falling to Ohio State in the Big Ten semifinal, can start juggling around the seeding.

NO. 4 SEED

KANSAS, WEST VIRGINIA

I’m not sure what the committee is going to do with the Jayhawks after their positive COVID tests. If the Big 12 has to notify the tournament committee that Kansas is out, we’ll know that before the bracket is released on Sunday. Assuming that Kansas is eligible, I think the machinations around the country in other conference tournaments is going to slide them back to a No. 4 seed. They were a No. 3 seed in most predictive brackets going into the Big 12 Tournament. The Mountaineers lost their shot at a No. 2 seed with that second loss to the Cowboys in the Big 12 Tournament. Their tepid finish to the season — losing three of their final four games, albeit all three to ranked Big 12 teams — is going to lead the committee to keep them on the No. 4 seed line.  

 

NO. 6 SEED

TEXAS TECH

In the last NCAA Tournament the Red Raiders reached the national championship game. The selection committee will keep that in mind. They’ll also keep in mind the rigorous Big 12 schedule the Red Raiders played this season. But the committee will also see that the Red Raiders have been up-and-down all year and they’re going into the NCAA Tournament with two straight losses. The committee knows the kind of team the Red Raiders are, and I think that will boost their odds of staying off the No. 7 or No. 8 seed line. But the shuffling of seeds due to the other conference tournament is going to slide the Red Raiders off that No. 5 seed line that most are predicting.

NO. 7 SEED

OKLAHOMA

The Sooners are the team in the Big 12 going into the NCAA Tournament on a real low, having lost four of their last five games. That certainly hurts their NCAA Tournament seeding odds. But what the Sooners hope to avoid is a No. 8 seed line, where they would end up having to face a No. 1 seed in the second round. I think the Sooners’ body of work, despite the dip in results the past two weeks, will keep them off that No. 8 seed line and nudge them up to a No. 7 seed.

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