Virginia, Villanova, Kansas and Xavier look to be the top seeds in the tournament. Stay here for live updates, predictions and analysis on Selection Sunday.
It’s Selection Sunday, when the N. C. A. selection committee sets the field for the men’s tournament. Stay here for live updates, predictions and analysis:
How to watch: For the first time, the show will be televised on TBS instead of its longtime home, CBS, beginning at 6 p.m., Eastern.
Entering the last conference tournaments this past week, the likely top line looked like this: Virginia, Villanova, Kansas and Xavier. When Xavier lost in the Big East semifinals, it opened the door for a likely No. 2 like Duke to crash in. But hours later, Duke lost the Atlantic Coast Conference semifinals to North Carolina. With a shot at a top seed, the Tar Heels lost to Virginia, 71-63, in the A. C. championship game, which puts us back where we started — Virginia, Villanova, Kansas and Xavier.
Want exclusive sports news, highlights and analysis from a rotating cast of New York Times journalists, delivered to your inbox once a week? Click here to receive our weekly Sports newsletter.
The selection show will be handled differently this year. All 68 tournament teams will be revealed within the first 10 minutes of the two-hour show, eliminating any drama about who is left on the bubble. After that, the full regional brackets will be shown over the next half-hour.
The John Wooden era at U. C.L.A. notwithstanding, most would not consider the Pacific-12 to be the top basketball conference. But it briefly looked as though it might place only Arizona in the tournament, which would be embarrassing. At this point, Southern California and U. C.L.A. have good shots, and Arizona State, which was the last team to be undefeated this season, could make it as well.
It is far from clear how many teams will ultimately be touched by the federal investigation into corruption in recruiting. Documents leaked last month purported to show around 20 programs with some kind of irregularity, and that is just regarding one sports agent. But even of the seven teams that were directly implicated by last year’s complaints, most are almost certainly going dancing: Arizona, Auburn, Miami and Southern California, with Louisville and Oklahoma State on the bubble. Awkward.
Over the last decade, the Ivy League turned itself into a veritable mid-major, strongly in the center of the Division I pack. Its automatic qualifier routinely received a respectable No. 12 or No. 13 seed. This year, though, the conference is down, and champion Penn could receive the league’s first No. 16 seed since 1989… which just so happens to have been the year Princeton nearly became the only bottom seed to knock off a No. 1.