2021 CSJ Sagarin NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament Projections-Jan. 10

It was announced earlier this season that the entire NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament would be played in the state of Indiana. The graphic above shows the locations in Indianapolis, Bloomington, and West Lafayette that will host tournament games.

Four venues in Indianapolis including the NBA’s Indiana Pacers arena of Bankers Life Fieldhouse, the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts stadium of Lucas Oil Stadium, Butler’s home court of historic Hinkle Fieldhouse and IUPUI’s home arena of Indian Farmers Coliseum will host games. Lucos Oil Stadium was already announced as the Final Four site and that location will remain.

Also, the Big 10’s two teams in the state of the Indiana and Purdue will have their home arenas also host games of Simon Skjott Assembly Hall and Mackey Arena respectively.

This article is the first projection of CSJ’s NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament using the Sagarin rankings to field of the 68 teams that make-up the tournament.

We use the Sagarin rankings to select our Top 25 teams currently for our Mid-Major poll and High Major poll.

We will be giving a projection for the Field of 68 schools each week following the release of each Top 25 polls until the actual selection of field on March 14th. As actual tournament champions are crowned, these will also be placed into the projections.

Automatic Qualifiers

The following are the 32 projected Division I conference champions. The ones highlighted in YELLOW are what we categorize as Mid-Major conferences. The ones highlighted in GREEN are ones we categorize as High-Major conferences. And the ones highlighted in BLUE are ones we categorize as Major conferences.

Click on the graphic for a larger view.

Field of 68

The following are the 68 teams based on the Sagarin rankings and using the 31 automatic qualifiers (one less without the Ivy League participating this year) and the 37 at-large qualifiers. Note just as above, the teams highlighted in YELLOW are ones from Mid-Major conferences, in GREEN are High Major conferences, and in BLUE are from Major conferences.

Each of the seeds are highlighted for the four regions with the exception of the #11, #12 and #16 seeds, which have more teams as those are the seeds in these projections that would play in the First Four games. The eight First Four teams are highlighted on the left in ORANGE and in italics. These teams are the last four at-large teams and the last four automatic qualifying teams.

NOTE: Arizona has placed a self-imposed ban on its postseason opportunity this year and would have been a 12 seed in the projections and opened the spot for Missouri to take its place in this week’s rankings.

Click on the graphic for a larger view.

All the Mid-Major conferences are projecting just the conference champions as qualifiers and no at-large selections.

The High Major conferences, however, have two leagues with two participants in the projections. There is one additional team from the West Coast Conference–Gonzaga is joined by BYU. The Mountain West also has one addition to join San Diego State in Boise State.

The first eight out has one team just out in the Atlantic 10’s Richmond, as Saint Louis currently is the only team from that league in the field. SMU from the American with Houston being the only school from that league and Utah State from the Mountain West are also part of the first eight out.

The top ten seeded High Major and Mid-Major schools are as follows:

#1 seed -- Gonzaga (High) (Top overall)
#2 seed -- Houston (High)
#6 seed -- San Diego State (High)
#10 seed -- BYU (High)
#11 seed -- Boise State (High)
#11 seed -- Saint Louis (High)  
#12 seed -- Drake (High)
#12 seed -- Furman (Mid) 
#12 seed -- Toledo (Mid)
#13 seed -- Wright State (Mid)

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