Maybe things are starting to calm down on the top line of the bracket. Only one of my No. 1 seeds in Friday’s bracket lost this weekend. Wisconsin fell at home to Michigan State on Friday and has dropped back down to a No. 2 seed.
Kansas moves up to the top line for now as the No. 1 seed in the East. The Jayhawks have a big game at home Monday against Texas Tech, a No. 3 seed. The Red Raiders have a chance to make a strong case for a No. 1 seed themselves if they win. With a victory they would be 3-0 against No. 1 seeds KU and Baylor, with two of those wins coming on the road.
Bracketology top seeds
Check out Palm’s latest bracket, full field of 68 and all the teams on the bubble on the Bracketology hub.
Big Bracketology games on tap this week
There are several other important games with bracket implications this week. Here are a few to keep an eye on with their current seeding in the bracket listed before each team.
No. 3 Michigan State at No. 7 Illinois: Illinois has an odd profile in part because of the absence of center Kofi Cockburn at times and guard Andre Curbelo for a big chunk of the season so far. The Illini are coming off a loss at Maryland in which Cockburn did not play due to a concussion suffered on Monday against Purdue. They will need him against MSU.
No. 2 Arizona at No. 3 UCLA: The Wildcats have a gaudy record but are lacking in the kind of wins that give them a stronger case for a top seed. They only have two Quad 1 wins and only a handful of chances left to get more. This is one of those. It’s a big game for UCLA also for largely the same reason. High quality wins will be tough to come by in the Pac-12.
No. 12 Texas A&M at No. 4 LSU: The Aggies are squarely on the bubble and have a chance to pick up their best win of the season by far. It’s a big game for the Tigers too. LSU is having a hard time staying healthy and have lost three straight.
Florida at No. 6 Tennessee: Like Texas A&M, a win here would be the best of the season for the Gators, one of the first four out. They are still trying to atone for a home loss to Texas Southern, which is weighing down their tournament resume.
No. 12 Oklahoma at No. 8 West Virginia: The Sooners are only 12-7 and in trouble. They have lost four in a row and five of their last six to sink into the First Four. This is a tough road test for Oklahoma, but it is very important because the game after this is Saturday at Auburn, the new No. 1 team in the AP Top 25 poll.
No. 3 Purdue at No. 11 Iowa: The Hawkeyes are another team that has an opportunity to get their best win of season. Iowa put a scare into the Boilermakers in the conference opener in December, but Purdue was able to hold the Hawkeyes off. The Boilers may be without leading scorer Jaden Ivey, who missed the Northwestern game on Sunday with a hip-flexor injury.