Now that a couple of weeks have passed since the start of the season we have an updated look at Bracketology from Joe Lunardi for the men’s basketball NCAA Tournament. His most recent update is only taking into account games through Dec. 7 (Monday), so Wisconsin’s most recent win against Rhode Island and the Big Ten/ACC Challenge results haven’t been added into Lunardi’s secret bracketing formula.
Something a little different this year in Lunardi’s predictions is that, well, there are three of them! Since we don’t know how March Madness will look this year due to COVID-19, Lunardi has three different brackets, one with the traditional 68 teams, one with 48 teams and one with 16.
Let’s take a look at where he has the Badgers slotted and who they would potentially play in a first round matchup.
- In the 68 team tourney, Lunardi has Wisconsin as a No. 3 seed playing No. 14 seed, and OVC champion, Murray State. If the Badgers won, they would play the winner of No. 6 seed Louisville and No. 11 seed Purdue, two teams that Wisconsin will (hopefully) have already played during the regular season. In this region, Villanova is the No. 1 seed, West Virginia is the No. 2 seed and UVa is the No. 4 seed. In this iteration, 10 Big Ten teams would be in the Tournament, with Minnesota being among the “next four out.”
- For the 48 team version, the Badgers are again a No. 3 seed and get a bye in the first round. Their first opponent would be the winner of No. 6 Louisville and No. 11 Georgia State. There would only be eight B1G teams in this bracket.
- As for the 16 team bracket, you may have already guessed it, but the Badgers would be a No. 3 seed with Villanova, West Virginia and UVa in their quadrant.
Let’s hope that it doesn’t come down to shrinking the NCAA Tournament this year and we can have a safe and fun 68 team rumble because this really seems like a year that Duke is going to lose to a double-digit seed and the country needs that.