— Last three years, only four of the 12 Final Four teams were #1-seeds.
— Three of this year’s #1-seeds play Thursday-Saturday this week.
— Top-ranked teams who missed the Field of 68: Rutgers (#35), Oklahoma Sate (#38) and Oregon (#41).
— Arizona State is in the First Four for third time in last five tournaments; they lost 60-56 to Syracuse in 2018, beat St John’s 74-65 the next year.
Think about it; on February 25, Sun Devils beat rival Arizona 89-88 when they sank a 55-foot desperation jumper at the buzzer. Without that win, Arizona State is in the NT.
— Speaking of the NIT, North Carolina declined to play in it after being the first preseason #1 team ever to miss the NCAA Tournament.
Some trends on how some conferences have fared in first round games:
— Lot has been said this year about how the Big X is by far the best conference this year; over the last three years, Big X teams are 14-5 ATS in Round of 64 games.
— Mountain West got four teams in the NCAA’s this year; over the last three years, MW teams are 0-8 SU/ATS in Round of 64 games.
— Charleston is a 5-point underdog vs San Diego State Thursday; Cougars play pace #29, while Aztecs play pace #252, so a contrast of styles here.
Over last nine years, CAA teams are 0-9 SU, but 5-4 against the spread.
— Florida Atlantic is 31-3, their best season ever; will they be able to keep coach Dusty May? You go 31-3 at a mid-major, a coach usually works his way up to a bigger $$$ job.
Last seven years, Conference USA teams are 5-2 SU in Round of 64 games.
— VCU beat Dayton 68-56 to win the A-15 tournament; Rams are 27-7, but they weren’t getting in the NCAA’s if they lost this game. This was first time since 2005 that the A-15 got one team in the tournament- they had 12 teams in the league back then.
— Big Sky teams haven’t won a tournament game since Montana (+7) upset Nevada 87-79 way back in 2006. Big Sky teams went 3-11-1 ATS in those losses.
Montana State is this year’s Big Sky team; they’re 22-4 in their last 26 games, are experience team #47. Bobcats play #3-seed Kansas State in their first round game.
— Last three years, SEC teams are 7-4-2 ATS in first round games.
— Kent State-Indiana play in Albany Friday night; Kent coach Ron Senderoff is an Albany alum and he also worked at Indiana, from 2006-08.
Over last six years, MAC teams covered all six of their games in Round of 64.
— Over last ten years, Horizon League teams are 0-10 SU, 3-7 ATS; Wright State did win a play-in game last year.
— I’ll have a lot more on the tournament as the week goes on.