Alabama is the No. 1 seed in the preview NCAA Tournament Men’s Basketball Select Committee bracket, revealed Saturday afternoon.
It would be the Crimson Tide’s first seed in program history.
“On the stretch of 13 wins in Quads 1 and 2,” committee chairman Chris Reynolds said. “They have a very strong resume and that win over Houston put them on top.”
The committee has announced its top 16 seeds as of now, with Houston, Purdue and Kansas the 1 seeds after Alabama.
Reynolds pointed to the Jayhawks’ 12 Quadrant 1 wins, by far the most in the country, and their No. 1 strength. 1 of the program as factors that propelled them to the top of the table.
Texas, Arizona, Baylor and UCLA were the 2 seeds, with Tennessee, Virginia, Iowa State and Kansas State as the 3 seeds. The Cyclones are 4-6 in their last 10 games, while Kansas State has lost five of their last seven games, but it’s a sign of the strength of the Big 12 that both were still in the top 12.
Reynolds said conference affiliation is not a factor in seeding or inclusion.
“We judge each team on their own merits,” he said.
Indiana, Marquette, Gonzaga and Xavier rounded out the top 16 as the 4 seeds.
Reynolds said Creighton, Miami, Saint Mary’s and UConn were the other teams in discussions for the final spots.
This is the only fake reveal of the season. Selection Sunday is March 12.
“We may see some changes,” Reynolds said. “It will be interesting to see how the next three weeks play out.”
With five teams in the top 16 seeds, the Big 12 are having a “big year,” according to Reynolds.
“It’s been an incredible season for the league thus far, with high-quality wins for many of the teams in the conference, and that’s reflected in this presentation,” Reynolds said. “While we rate these teams as independents, there’s no ignoring the fact that the Big 12 are having a great year.”