Projected Field Of 64: April 17Postseason
Much about the postseason picture can change in two weeks. A couple of weeks ago, we released our Midseason Field of 64 projections, and took last week off from the projections. Well, we’re back, and there are some notable changes in terms of the top eight and top 16 clubs, respectively.
In terms of the top eight, some seeds changed from two weeks ago. For instance, Arkansas is up to the No. 2 overall seed, while Stanford, which was No. 2 in our midseason projections, is now No. 4. Oregon State, our No. 5 national seed this week, replaced Florida State as a top eight. The Seminoles are barely holding on to a host site with others such as Georgia, Texas, Indiana and Clemson hot on their heels.
As for the host sites, Clemson, Indiana and Auburn dropped out as hosts this week. Clemson is trending the wrong direction from an RPI standpoint after dropping a home series to Miami, Indiana’s RPI continues to dip and that’s a concern and Auburn’s conference record is a problem with a difficult conference schedule remaining. It would be wise to watch Indiana and Big Ten counterpart Illinois. Both teams have RPIs in the 20s, and with the top half of the Big Ten strong this spring, it wouldn’t be shocking to see one of those two earn a host site, We’re just not completely confident in the RPI at this point with other, more worthy candidates.
As a reminder for those who may not remember, the national seeds are no longer seeded 1-8. Instead, they are now seeded 1-16 with no regard for conference affiliation for the super regional round. The top eight teams are guaranteed to host throughout the postseason. Examples of the new format are abound in this week’s projections as you have some interesting potential conference matchups, such as Arkansas vs. Texas A&M and Ole Miss vs. Kentucky.
Speaking of the SEC, the powerful league leads the way with six host sites and 10 bids to the postseason, while the ACC is right behind with four host sites and six bids. Other notables include the Big 12 with five bids and one host site, the Pac 12 with two host sites and five bids and the American is impressive right now with two host sites, four bids and UCF right on the cusp of making the field. It’s a down year for the West Coast from an RPI standpoint with the Big West and WCC almost certainly being one-bid leagues, while the Mountain West has potential for two bids at the moment.
Our last five teams in the field: TCU, Washington, Michigan, Northeastern, Creighton.
The next five: UCF, Ohio State, Georgia Tech, Missouri State, Jacksonville.