Kentucky and Kansas are 2 hungry blue bloods in our new NCAA bracket
Given how much the selection committee values teams’ non-conference schedules, Saturday’s Big 12/SEC Challenge gives those leagues’ tourney contenders a prime opportunity to bolster their resumes.
Here’s a quick primer on the games that matter most.
Iowa State at Texas A&M (2 ET): The 17-3 Aggies tumbled from a No. 2 to a No. 4 seed with this week’s loss to Arkansas; they can vault right back with a win over the 16-4 Cyclones, currently my No. 5 overall seed.
Oklahoma at LSU (5 ET): Player-of-the-year candidates Buddy Hield and Ben Simmons take center stage. The 13-7 Tigers could begin building a case as a bubble team if they manage to knock off my current No. 1 overall seed.
Kentucky at Kansas (7 ET): The 16-4 Jayhawks have lost three of their last five but can still contend for a No. 1 seed if they turn things around. Kentucky could use a signature win to replace its now-devalued victory at Duke.
NOTES: The current first-place team in each conference is designated as the automatic berth (*). In the event of ties, I use the highest-ranked RPI team.
The Midwest winner will play the East winner in the Final Four and the West will face the South.