Welcome to Selection Sunday, everyone.
The evaluation period on Marquette ended on Thursday afternoon with a loss to Seton Hall. However, everyone else kept playing to the end of their conference tournaments, so we had a few more Tetris pieces fall into place between now and then. The bracket will be officially announced on CBS at 4:30pm Central, but in the meantime, let’s take a look around to see what the world’s foremost experts on bracketology have to say about the Golden Eagles.
ESPN (3/12/17): Marquette is in, relatively cleanly. They’re two spots clear of Dayton and headed to Sacramento as a #11 seed for a first round game against #6 Saint Mary’s. That would set them up with a potential second round game against either #3 Oregon or #14 New Mexico State. Kind of a weird bit of business by Lunardi, where his last four byes (the last four teams that avoid Dayton) are all from the Big East.
CBS Sports (3/12/17): Jerry Palm has Marquette as an #11 seed as well. It’s unclear how close MU is to Dayton here, with one of Palm’s #11 slots occupied by a First Four game. MU would face #6 seed Iowa State in Orlando in this setup, and the winner would move on to face either #3 Florida State or #14 Florida Gulf Coast.
SB Nation (3/12/17): The resident bracketologist for our benevolent blog overlords has Marquette as a #10 seed in the East Region. #7 Arkansas is the foe in this instance, and it means a trip out to Sacramento to play the game. #2 Oregon or #15 Texas Southern represent the potential second round match up. If I’m counting correctly, MU is at least four spots clear from Dayton, with three of the four #11 seeds avoiding the First Four as well.
Sports Illustrated (3/12/17): Michael Beller also has a Marquette/Saint Mary’s game in his bracket, but here the Golden Eagles are a #10 seed squaring off against the #7 seeded Gaels. A win would send MU off into a second round game against either #2 Oregon or #15 Jacksonville State.
Fox Sports (3/12/17): I don’t know why, but Stewart Mandel has always been higher than most on the Golden Eagles. He’s got Marquette as a #9 seed here, believe it or not, and he’s given the Golden Eagles a fairly big storyline in their first round game. Mandel has MU paired up with #8 seed Northwestern, thus turning the game into a battle of two former Duke assistants with Steve Wojciechowski on MU’s sideline and Chris Collins steering the ship for the Wildcats. The winner would advance into a game against #1 Kansas, unless you think that UC Davis or Texas Southern can swing a First Four win and the first ever #16 over #1 upset in tournament history.
NBC Sports/College Basketball Talk (3/12/17): Dave Ommen likes the Golden Eagles a bunch as well. He’s got Marquette as a #9 seed, paired up with #8 seed South Carolina. It’s in the Midwest Region, so that means a potential second round game against #1 Kansas here as well.
Bracket Matrix (3/11/17, 10:55pm): The Matrix hasn’t updated this morning, but I can’t fault the people behind it for that. Depending on how much effort has to go in to running an update, it makes a lot more sense for them to update around noon or so to give as many brackets as possible a chance to run one final update. Anyway, Marquette is a #10 seed on their list, right alongside Seton Hall, Xavier, and Michigan State. A #10 seed would mean a game against a #7 seed, and that would be Saint Mary’s, Maryland, Michigan, or Miami (FL) here. There are eight teams between Marquette and the at-large cut line here.