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TOURNEY WATCH: 3/18/2011 (NCAA Open Thread)

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<strong>Youth and experience:</strong> A passing of the torch is taking place as K-State's two seniors lead three future stars on one final run through the NCAA Tournament.
Youth and experience: A passing of the torch is taking place as K-State's two seniors lead three future stars on one final run through the NCAA Tournament.

Once again, feel free to use this story's comments section as a gathering place to discuss the early afternoon NCAA Tournament action, especially if you were clever like me and took a vacation day today.

Most of the relevant action was concentrated within the Cats' Southeast Region, where K-State obviously knocked off No. 12 seed Utah State.

It will be a tough match-up for the Cats, as Panjandrum explained in the postgame thread.

Jacob and the Miracles now will face fourth-seeded Wisconsin, which dispatched my upset pick Belmont with relative ease. The Badgers are a familiar foe, having knocked Pullen and company out three years ago in Omaha.

Elsewhere in the region, Florida barely broke a sweat in pounding UC Santa Barbara in front of a home crowd, while perennial Cinderella Gonzaga dispatched media sensation St. John's in what I though was a fairly predictable result.

Don't bet against Mark Few in this tourney and don't pick the Johnnies when they have to fly west.

The only other opponent in action was Missouri, which lost a lead late in the first half, then lost all confidence, then lost its fifth game in six tries, and now might lose its coach to a neighboring state. That's a lot of losing.

Associated Press Ranking = 21

ESPN/USA Today Ranking = 24

Overall Record = 23-10

Big 12 Record = 10-6

Top 50 Record = 4-6

Big 12 Seed = 4

NCAA Seed = 5

RPI = 23

SOS = 11

Region (Site) = Southeast (Tucson)

Signature Wins (RPI 1-30) = Kansas, Texas, Utah State

Quality Wins (RPI 31-100) = James Madison, Virginia Tech, Gonzaga, Washington State, Baylor, Nebraska (2), Missouri

Bad Losses (RPI 101 or greater) = none

  • James Madison (21-12, 10-8 CAA) | RPI = 88
  • No. 1* seed Virginia Tech (22-11, 9-7 ACC) | RPI = 62
  • Presbyterian (13-18, 7-11 Big South) | RPI = 204
  • No. 11 seed Gonzaga (24-9, 11-3 WCC) | RPI = 56: Win over No. 6 seed St. John's (86-71 in the Southeast Region of the NCAA Tournament)
  • No. 1 seed Duke (30-4, 13-3 ACC) | RPI = 4
  • Texas Southern (19-13, 16-2 SWAC) | RPI = 192
  • Emporia State (16-14, 12-10 MIAA**)
  • No. 2* seed Washington State (20-12, 9-9 Pac-10) | RPI = 82
  • Alcorn State (4-24, 4-14 SWAC) | RPI = 337
  • Loyola-Chicago (16-15, 7-11 Horizon League) | RPI = 197
  • No. 2 seed Florida (27-7, 13-3 SEC) | RPI = 8: Win over No. 15 seed UCSB (79-51 in the Southeast Region of the NCAA Tournament)
  • No. 8 seed UNLV (24-8, 11-5 Mountain West) | RPI = 25
  • UMKC (16-14, 9-9 Summit League) | RPI = 212
  • North Florida (15-19, 10-10 Atlantic Sun) | RPI = 149
  • Savannah State (12-18) | RPI = 252
  • No. 3* seed Oklahoma State (20-13, 6-10 Big 12) | RPI = 61
  • No. 1* seed Colorado (22-13, 8-8 Big 12) | RPI = 65
  • Texas Tech (13-19, 5-11 Big 12) | RPI = 165
  • No. 11 seed Missouri (23-11, 8-8 Big 12) | RPI = 37: Loss to No. 6 seed Cincinnati (63-78 in the West Region of the NCAA Tournament)
  • No. 7 seed Texas A&M (24-8, 10-6 Big 12) | RPI = 30
  • Baylor (18-13, 7-9 Big 12) | RPI = 94
  • No. 1 seed Kansas (32-2, 14-2 Big 12) | RPI = 1
  • Nebraska (19-13, 7-9 Big 12) | RPI = 89
  • Iowa State (16-16, 3-13 Big 12) | RPI = 138
  • Oklahoma (14-18, 5-11 Big 12) | RPI = 126
  • No. 4 seed Texas (27-7, 13-3 Big 12) | RPI = 11
  • No. 12 seed Utah State (30-4, 15-1 WAC) | RPI = 15: Loss to No. 5 seed Kansas State (68-73 in the Southeast Region of the NCAA Tournament)
  • No. 4 seed Wisconsin (24-8, 13-5 Big Ten) | RPI = 16: Win over No. 13 seed Belmont (72-58 in the Southeast Region of the NCAA Tournament)

*NIT
**Division II