It looked for all the world last night like we were going to have some big time shuffling at the top of the KenPom s-curve. Xavier was down big at the half on the road. Michigan State was down big at the half at a neutral site, and Virginia was struggling to stay afloat against a surprisingly game Cal squad. Then Xavier gutted Wake in front of a stunned Joel Coliseum, Michigan State got the game to OT and fended off Oakland, and Virginia held Cal to 6 points and just 1 field goal in the final 13 minutes of regulation before beating them with back-to-back threes off of brilliantly designed sets in OT.
All that to say that the teams you were expecting to see top 24 hours ago are basically the ones that are up there now. Here's your s-curve:
|3||Duke||North Carolina||Miami FL||KENTUCKY|
|7||Baylor||South Carolina||Texas A&M||VALPARAISO|
|9||USC||WICHITA ST.||Utah||Saint Mary's|
|12||SOUTH DAKOTA ST.||Syracuse||Texas Tech||Northwestern|
|13||ARKANSAS LITTLE ROCK||NEW MEXICO||HAWAII||STONY BROOK|
|14||CHATTANOOGA||YALE||OLD DOMINION||WILLIAM & MARY|
|15||BELMONT||HIGH POINT||STEPHEN F. AUSTIN||WEBER ST.|
|16||SOUTHERN||ARMY||NORTH FLORIDA||NEW MEXICO ST.|
|First 4 out||Ohio St.||Seton Hall||Colorado||Georgia|
|Next 4 out||Evansville||VCU||Arizona St.||Richmond|
And the bracket itself:
It's hard to argue with what the Big 12 is doing right now, placing the vast majority of the conference in the KenPom bracket. That league plays the double round robin just like the Big East does, so there will be plenty of opportunities for all eight of those teams to stay in or for the top teams to push the bottom ones back onto the bubble. There has been a little bit of shuffling, but the top 6 conferences currently hold 40 of the 68 bids. The AAC and the WCC are the only mid-majors with more than one (each has two), and 24 leagues currently feature only the automatic bid making the big KenPom dance.
The Big East is down to just four teams in thanks to the meteoric plummet of Georgetown. The Hoyas started the year in lockstep with Xavier and Butler in the KenPom rankings. X has jumped into the top 10, Butler has crept up, and Georgetown has slid all the way to 72nd on the back of some truly putrid losses. It's not a real feather in the cap for the league, but I'd sacrifice Georgetown to 351st in the KenPom if it kept Xavier in the running for a top bid. I'm no conference partisan; it's all about the X.