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NCAA Bracketology Preview (part 2)

02/26/2011

March Madness and the NCAA Tournament are unquestionably the peak time for college basketball betting. In our first NCAA Bracketology preview, we told you about our weekly free newsletter and annual Bracketology article, which will become available on March 15th. However, before we get to that, we will be going over the individual history of how certain seeds fare against one another in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

In Part 1, we told you that #1 seeds are 104-0 straight up all-time vs. #16 seeds and went 4-0 against the spread last year. We also talked about the expansion of the “opening round” or play-in games from one to four and how that will impact your office pool.

In this edition, we will discuss how teams seeded 2 through 4 fare in the first round against teams seeded 13 through 15. For winning college basketball picks throughout the NCAA Tournament, please visit our picks page.

2009 marked the first NCAA Tournament where every team seeded 1 through 3 made it to the Sweet Sixteen. Since the field was expanded to 64 teams in 1985, teams seeded 2 through 4 are a strong 169-43 SU. As you would expect 2 seeds have the highest success rate, losing only four times to a 15 seed and the last time this happened was 2001.

One 3 seed lost in the first round of the tournament last year and that was Georgetown, who bit the dust against Ohio U. That was the 16th all-time loss by a 3-seed in the first round.

It’s almost becoming automatic that you have to play against one 4 seed in the first round of the NCAA Tournament each year. That’s because 22 of the previous 26 tournaments have seen at least one four seed go down in the first two days of the Big Dance. We called last year’s upset with Murray State over Vanderbilt.

This year’s 4 seeds could be in for more trouble. That’s because some of the teams that could end up as 13 seeds in this year’s tournament look very dangerous. Keep an eye on the following schools and make a note of them when the brackets are officially released: Coastal Carolina, Belmont, Oakland and Cleveland State. You can bet that the higher seeded opponents that draw any of these teams will not be happy come Selection Sunday!

Up next we will take a look at the 5 vs. 12 and 6 vs. 11 matchups, which have an incredible history of upsets.

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