Villanova Should Be Mad At Wisconsin’s 8 Seed
One of the constant themes of the Badgers 65-62 win over Villanova were Badgers fans exclaiming how they ‘were not an eight seed.’ For some reason, they all were miffed at the seed given to them, and the victory over the defending national champion proved this point. In reality, Wisconsin fell to eight due to NCAA Committee not respecting Big Ten, overvaluing the ACC and Badgers losing 4-6 in regular season ignoring Big Ten Tournament. The 8 seed is just a number, but to Wisconsin fans, it’s a scarlet letter (or number). The real upset people should be Villanova, the overall number one seed, getting the hardest eight seed.
Wisconsin ranked 28th overall in the NCAA Tournament seedings. Badgers should have been playing either the three or the four one seed in the second round. There’s no reason why Northwestern and Wisconsin could not have flipped in this scenario. Badgers had not played Vandy this season, nor, the Wildcats didn’t face off versus Virginia Tech. Jay Wright should be steaming that he didn’t get the most optimal matchup as the overall number one. This isn’t a new theme developing though. The overall number one seed continues to have the hardest path in the tournament judging by the lack of Final Fours from the team. If this is the case, why are we even bothering ranking the one seeds? It’s becoming an irrelevant practice.
It’s hard to tell the committee to start paying attention to conference tournaments. We’ll await the results of Michigan-Louisville and Rhode Island-Oregon, but if both low seeds advance, there will be talk about they’re riding the wave from conference tourney week. Dayton bowed out early in the A-10 tournament and did the same in the NCAA Tournament. Villanova won Big East while Butler lost its first game and will be in the Sweet 16. There’s too much variance in conference tournaments to invest stock into it, hence, why the committee judged Wisconsin on how they finished in the regular season.
Some teams know how to play in March. Wisconsin is one of them. Look at Xavier as another example. They were so bad down the stretch that they nearly ended up off the bubble, yet, they’re in the Sweet 16 again. The seeds don’t matter, it’s the team and the coaching that really shine through in the month of March.