Tallahassee was selected as one of sixteen host sites for the 2014 NCAA Regionals, beginning Friday. Also, after a strong ACC Tournament, are the Noles a National Seed? We break down the picture for a Top 8 seed.
Florida State was named by the NCAA as one of sixteen host teams for the Regional round Sunday night. Joining the Seminoles as host teams are: Virginia, Florida, Oregon State, Indiana, UL-Lafayette, Louisiana State, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Louisville, Texas Christian, Cal Poly, Oklahoma State, Vanderbilt, Rice, and Miami
National Seed Picture
The National Seed race is wild at the moment with teams making surges and others fading out of the picture. One thing is certain, there will be a few worthy teams come Monday at noon that are left out from the Top 8.
Virginia: 44-13 (22-8 ACC), RPI: 1, SOS: 20, 14-8 vs. RPI Top 50
The Hoos finished the season with a series loss to Wake Forest and a 1-2 showing in the ACC Tournament. However with a very strong RPI and SOS, including a great conference record and strong record vs. the RPI Top 50, Virginia has nothing to worry about.
Florida: 34-18 (19-8 SEC), RPI: 3, SOS: 1, 23-14 vs. RPI Top 50
The Gators remain a lock after winning the SEC regular season title. UF has the top SOS in the nation, a ridiculous number of quality wins and a superb RPI. Florida could be the top national seed when they are announced.
Oregon State: 42-12 (23-7 PAC-12), RPI: 6, SOS: 49, 13-5 vs. RPI Top 50
Oregon State clinched the PAC-12 championship this weekend with a win over USC. The Beavers have a strong RPI, and a great record against quality opponents. Oregon State is a likely Top 3 seed.
Louisiana-Lafayette: 53-7 (26-4 Sun Belt), RPI: 9, SOS: 114, 3-1 vs. RPI Top 50
ULL locked up a National Seed by having a strong conference tournament. Sure, they have a weak SOS, but with a strong RPI and a ridiculous number of wins, they are locked up for a Top 8 seed. Regardless of whether I think they deserve it by beating up on terrible opponents.
Florida State: 43-15 (21-9 ACC), RPI: 4, SOS: 7, 14-13 vs. RPI Top 50
The Noles were likely locked up after finishing the regular season with a series win against Duke, but having a strong ACC Tournament including a win over Virginia didn't hurt. With Miami fading this week in Greensboro, FSU now has nothing to worry about, they are a lock for National Seed.
Indiana: 42-13 (21-3 Big 10), RPI: 2, SOS: 36, 9-7 vs. RPI Top 50
The Hoosiers have had a fantastic 2014 campaign, winning both the Big 10 regular season and tournament. With a very strong RPI and good SOS, Indiana was a near lock coming into the Big 10 Tournament and with a great showing there have locked up a National Seed.
Ole Miss: 41-18 (19-11 SEC), RPI: 14, SOS: 17, 15-13 vs. RPI Top 50
LSU: 44-14 (17-11 SEC), RPI: 9, SOS: 39, 14-11 vs. RPI Top 50
The Rebels seemed to be in great shape coming into this week after taking a road series against Texas A&M. Unfortunately, they had a poor SEC Tournament losing twice to Arkansas. While they may still get a National Seed, one has to wonder if LSU's hot streak recently has surged the Tigers ahead of the Rebels. LSU holds a higher RPI than Ole Miss and has strong momentum by winning their last seven games. The tie-break could be the head-to-head series win LSU had in Oxford back in April. This is a close call with both teams deserving and likely only one spot available.
LSU has surged into a possible National Seed by winning its last seven games and tearing through the SEC Tournament to the championship game. Momentum matters to the NCAA committee and with a high RPI and a good number of wins against the RPI Top 50, the SEC title might do the trick. Should LSU lose to UF in the SEC Final, then it will be interesting to see who gets the nod between the Tigers and Rebels, if not maybe both receiving national seeds.
Vanderbilt: 41-18 (17-13 SEC), RPI: 8, SOS: 5, 17-14 vs. RPI Top 50
South Carolina: 42-16 (18-12 SEC), RPI: 13, SOS: 31, 12-11 vs. RPI Top 50
The Commodores fell out of the National Seed picture after losing a series against fellow bubble team South Carolina to end the regular season. Vandy followed that up with a 1-2 performance in the SEC Tournament losing to LSU and Ole Miss, both teams also vying for a Top 8 seed. Just two weeks ago Vanderbilt was just in as a national seed, now they are sweating it out just for a regional host spot.
The Gamecocks did end the regular season with a big series win against Vanderbilt, but going 0-2 in the SEC Tournament has likely knocked them out of a National Seed. With both Ole Miss and LSU ahead in the pecking order, South Carolina getting a Top 8 seed would be surprising.
Texas Christian: 42-15 (15-6 Big 12), RPI: 12, SOS: 26, 16-8 vs. RPI Top 50
Oklahoma State: 45-16 (18-6 Big 12), RPI: 18, SOS: 49, 17-6 vs. RPI Top 50
TCU has been in the picture for a while now with a strong RPI and SOS. Oklahoma State on the other hand, has stormed into the picture by winning the Big 12 regular season and reaching the conference tournament's title game. The Big 12 is the #2 rated conference by the RPI and will likely get a spot with the ACC and SEC doubtful to get three seeds. Oklahoma State has the series head to head claim and has a tremendous record against quality opponents. It's been much talked about around the national media, but the winner of the Big 12 Tournament Championship Game will likely get the conference's lone National Seed.
Miami: 41-17 (24-6 ACC), RPI: 15, SOS: 19, 11-11 vs. RPI Top 50
Cal Poly: 45-10 (19-5 Big West), RPI: 16, SOS: 146, 6-5 vs. RPI Top 50
These two teams are likely out for a national seed for different reasons. Miami came into the ACC Tournament as a National Seed, but a 1-2 record there, along with the surge from other teams around the nation, has them likely out at this time. Miami does have the ACC Regular Season Championship, but it's resume isn't too overwhelming with an OK RPI and an average record against RPI Top 50 opponents. What really hurts Miami is that the ACC already has two surefire National Seeds, and it's unlikely any conference gets three.
Cal Poly is a team that is similar to UL-Lafayette in that they have a ton of wins albeit against weak competition. The Mustangs have a pretty good RPI, but it's just not high enough to off-set the poor SOS, like ULL can claim.
Final Top 8 Seeds
3. Oregon State
5. Florida State
6. Louisiana State
8. Texas Christian
LSU defeated Florida today in the SEC Championship capping an incredible last couple weeks for the Tigers. As a result they will get a National Seed. Meanwhile TCU defeated Oklahoma State in the Big 12 Championship, likely giving them the last National Seed, although they aren't nearly the lock LSU is. I have a funny feeling the SEC may get three national seeds with both LSU and Ole Miss receiving one, but I have a hard time believing the #2 RPI conference (Big 12) doesn't receive a single national seed.
Florida is still likely the #1 overall seed due to their very strong RPI, #1 ranked SOS, 23 wins against RPI Top 50, and winning the regular season title in the #1 rated RPI conference. Add that to the fact they finished the season stronger than both UVA and Oregon State and you have your likely top national seed.
What are your thoughts at the last National Seed predictions? Who are your eight? Discuss below. Official seeds and brackets will be announced tomorrow at 12 PM ET on ESPNU, use this thread to discuss during the selection show.