Mark Madness: Chapter 8: Bubble bursting time

The argument we have heard for years is why a regular season conference champion at the mid-major level should be penalized for a stumble in their conference tournament, benefiting a team from a major conference which didn't even win half of its games during the league season.

Say hello to Middle Tennessee State, which lost to Southern Miss in the Conference-USA tournament quarterfinals on Thursday night. What to do? The Blue Raiders RPI is high enough (28) to merit consideration, but where is a quality win (Murray State?)? For now, we have them sneaking into the tournament, but any upsets in the major conference tournaments could be costly.

With that in mind, here's what we see on Friday morning, with lots of bubbles left to be burst.




16.MEAC champion-LIU winner

8. Missouri

9. NC State

At San Diego

4. Arizona

13. America East

5.West Virginia

12. MAC champion

At Witchita

6. Kentucky

11. Saint Mary's/Middle Tennessee winner

3. Michigan State

14. Charleston

At Charlotte

7. URI

10. Texas A&M

2. Duke

15. Sun Belt Champion


At Charlotte

1. Virginia

16. SWAC champ/Lipscomb winner

8. Butler


At Boise

5. Wichita State

12. Murray State

4. Texas Tech

13. Iona

At Dallas

6. Nevada

11. Alabama/Louisville winner

3. Auburn

14. Bucknell

At Detroit

7. Seton Hall

10. Oklahoma State

2. Purdue

15. Wright State


At Detroit

1. Xavier

16. Ivy champion

8. Saint Bonaventure

9. Kansas State

At San Diego

5. Miami

12. Loyola (Chicago)

4. Florida

13. South Dakota State

At Dallas

6. Arkansas

11. Florida State

3. Michigan

14. UNC-Greensboro

At Pittsburgh

7. Arkansas

10. USC

2. Cincinnati

15. Radford


At Wichita


16. Southland Conference Champion

8. Creighton

9. Houston

At Boise

5. Ohio State

12. WAC champion

4. Gonzaga

13. Conference USA champion

At Nashville

6. Virginia Tech

11. Texas

3. Tennessee

14. Big Sky Champion

At Nashville

7. Houston

10. Providence

2. North Carolina

15. Big West champion