On Monday April 6th, we should have been crowning a college basketball champion, but instead we got a look ahead at the 2021 bracket from bracketology guru Joe Lunardi. Yes, it is a little painful when you consider that the Badgers probably would have won the whole thing and nobody can prove otherwise.
It seems like years ago that March Madness was canceled due to COVID-19, but it has only been a little over a month. In that time sports have gone away, seemed like a very distant memory, and then started to flicker back signs of hope of returning (someday). The NFL draft is coming up, the PGA set some dates, UFC is still going on and MLB hinted at a plan to get things started in all this.
As for college basketball, Joey B. decided to drop a bracketbomb on us and just give us the big dance that will wrap up a full calendar year from now. According to him, it’s never too early to start looking at seeding for a tournament that will take place in 11 months. Sure roster changes are happening, and the transfer portal is humming, but why not throw something at the wall and see if it sticks.
For the Badgers, seeding actually looks pretty good! As of right now Lundari has them as a 3-seed taking on the Anteaters of UC Irvine. Their bracket is led by top seeded Creighton and 2-seeded Baylor. If the Badgers survived the first game against UCI they’d take on the winner of UCLA/Providence. I know NOTHING about these teams heading into 2021, but looking at names of the teams alone, I’d take this bracket in a heartbeat.
It appears that Lunardi thinks the Badgers will be contending for a Big Ten title, but also that it will be a tight race and deep conference once again. As it stands in this projection, the conference will once again lead the way with ten teams making it. Along with Wisconsin, both Iowa and Michigan State are slated as 3-seeds. Then comes 5-seeds Ohio State and Michigan, 7-seeds Rutgers and Indiana, 8-seed Illinois, and a 10-seed in Maryland to round things out.
It may be early, but it appears right now that we could have a very similar season to what we had this past year, especially in the Big Ten conference. If it ends with a Big Ten title and a top four seed, I’d be ecstatic once again. Let’s just hope it gets beyond that point and into the dance starting this time around.