Field Of 64 Projection: May 10Postseason
We’re heading down the final stretch of the regular season, and with that comes postseason projections each week leading up to Selection Monday. While last week’s Field of 64 had some pleasant surprises, the very latest field includes some notable changes, both in way of national seeds and hosts and bubble teams.
Like last week, we won’t dive into all the numbers and metrics in this portion of our projections. Instead, our Aaron Fitt will have an in-depth Postseason Stock Report, which will dissect the cases for national seeds, hosts and more.
So, what are the major changes this week?
For starters, the national seed picture has a slightly different look this week. Following a tough home series loss to Georgia, Kentucky has dropped out as a national seed, while the beneficiary is Stanford out of the Pac-12. The Cardinal has been red-hot over the past few weeks, winning three-straight series, vaulting into the Top 10 of the RPI and putting together an impressive resume in the process. Stanford has a 6-4 record vs. RPI Top 25, 8-6 mark vs. RPI Top 50 and an impressive 25-13 mark vs. RPI Top 100. Meanwhile, the Cardinal has a strong conference standing and is trending the right direction with a favorable slate the rest of the regular season. Mississippi State was the other team we strongly considered for a top eight seed. While the Bulldogs have a strong case for a top eight, the RPI is a little low compared to other candidates. The RPI needs to go up. The good news? MSU has series against Georgia and LSU coming up, plus the SEC tournament. Win the SEC regular season title and the Bulldogs would be looking very good for one of the eight seeds.
In terms of host sites, there is only one change this week with Auburn dropping out and Arizona coming in following a home series sweep over Washington. AU has had one of the more shocking short-term drops we’ve seen in a while, going from a sure-fire host to 40 in the RPI. The silver lining here is that Auburn could get right back into the mix with two series wins to end the regular season, beginning this weekend at LSU. Arizona is back in the saddle as a host this week with an RPI of 14 and an improved conference record, which is what was holding it back last week.
Southeastern Louisiana and Louisiana Tech entered the mix as at-large teams this week, while Oregon and Charlotte moved out. The Ducks are struggling now but have a chance to make some amends against Oregon State this weekend, while Charlotte is coming off a tough home series loss to Rice. Automatic bids that were flipped include the Atlantic 10 (Rhode Island), Colonial (UNC Wilmington) and the Sun Belt (South Alabama).
Without further ado, the latest projections are here. It’s worth noting that these projections are a snapshot of where things currently stand, while also projecting how teams might also finish the regular season.