Kentucky have been the number one team in the nation since January, but lost to Vanderbiltm shockingly, in the SEC finals, which really didn’t change anything regarding their rankings in the poll and the tournament seeding, getting the #1 seed in the South Regional, waiting for the first winner from the first four to join the dance and meet them in the first round.
1. Kentucky Wildcats, 32-2 (30 first place votes) – The Wildcats finished the regular season as the SEC regular season champions, going a perfect 16-0 in conference play. They lost to Vanderbilt in the SEC tournament final, still getting the #1 seed in the South Regional.
2. Syracuse Orange, 31-2 – The Big East regular season champions went 17-1 in conference play, but lost to Cinncinati in the Big East tournament Semi Final. They get the #1 seed in the East Regional.
3. Missouri Tigers, 30-4 (1) – Missouri didn’t win the Big 12 regular season title, finishing 14-4 in conference play, behind Kansas. They did win the conference tournament, beating Baylor in the final, earning them the #2 seed in the West Regional.
4. Michigan State Spartans, 27-7 – The highest team on the rankings to win (shared) the regular season and conference title, sharing their Big Ten title with Ohio State and Michigan in what was probably the best conference this season. They beat Ohio State in the conference tourney final, earning the #1 spot in the West Regional.
5. North Carolina Tar Heels, 29-5 – UNC won the ACC regular season title by beating Duke on the final game, but lost in the tournament final to Florida State. That didn’t stop them from getting the #1 seed in the Midwest Regional.
6. Kansas Jayhawks, 27-6 – Kansas won the Big 12 regular season title, going 16-2 in the Big 12, but lost to Baylor in the tournament Semi Finals. They earned the #2 seed, behind UNC, in the Midwest Regional.
7. Ohio State Buckeyes, 27-7 – Shared the Big Ten title but lost to Michigan State in the conference tournament final. They’re #2 in the East regional behind Syracuse.
8. Duke Blue Devils, 27-6 – Finished second in the regular season and lost to Florida State in the ACC tournament, getting the #2 seed behind dreaded Kentucky in the South Regional.
9. Murray State Racers, 30-1 – Won the Ohio Valley Conference with a 15-1 conference record, and no tournament to change and shape the moods before the big dance begins. They got the #6 seed in the Phoenix Regional.
10. Baylor Bears, 27-7 – Lost to Missouri in the Big Ten conference final, finishing third in the conference behind Missouri and Kansas with a 12-6 record. They got the #3 seed in the south Regional.
11. Marquette Golden Eagles, 25-7 – Marquette finished second in the Big East with a 14-4 record and lost to Louisville in conference play. They got the #3 seed in the West Regional.
12. Florida State Seminoles, 24-9 – Their win over North Carolina (for the second time this season) pushed five spots up in the coaches poll, winning the ACC tournament, winning the conference tournament for the third time and the first since 1991. The Seminoles got the #3 seed in the East Regional.
13. Wisconsin Badgers, 24-9 – Lost to Michigan State in the conference tournament, finishing behind the top 3 in the regular season after a 12-6 in conference play. They got the #4 seed in the East Regional.
14. Michigan Wolverines, 24-9 – Got crushed by the Buckeyes 77-55 in the conference tournament but finished on par with them and the Spartans during the Big Ten regular season (13-5). Got the #4 seed in the Midwest Regional.
15. Georgetown Hoyas, 23-8 – Finished 4th in the Big East after a 12-6 regular season, losing to Cincinatti in the conference tournament. The Hoyas get the #3 seed in the Midwest Regional.
16. Saint Mary’s Gael’s, 27-5 – The Gael’s finished ahead of Gonzaga in the WCC and beat them to win the tournament for the second time in three years. They got the #7 Seed in the Midwest Regional.
17. Indiana Hoosiers, 25-8 – Had an 11-7 season in conference play, losing to Wisconsin in the conference tournament. They got the #4 seed in the South Regional.
18. Louisville Cardinals, 26-9 – Rick Pitino’s Cardinals finished with a 10-8 in conference play, but beat Cincinnati to win the Big East tournament. They got the #4 seed in the West regional.
19. Wichita State Shockers, 27-5 – WVU won the Missouri Valley regular season title after a 16-2 season in conference play and will make their first appearance in the tournament since 2006. They got the #5 seed in the South Regional.
20. Creighton Bluejays, 28-5 – Creighton finished behind Wichita in the conference, but won the tournament for the first time since 2007, which was also their last appearance in the national tournament. They got the #8 seed in the Midwest Regional.
21. Florida Gators, 23-10 – Lost to Kentucky in the SEC tournament, finishing 10-6 in conference play. Billy Donovan’s team got the #7 spot in the West Regional.
22. New Mexico Lobos, 27-6 – They beat San Diego State to win the Mountain West standings, sharing the regular season title with the same team. They are the #5 seed in the West Regional.
23. San Diego State Aztecs, 26-7 – Same season as the Lobos, just losing to them in the tournament final. SDSU will be the #6 seed in the Midwest Regional.
24. Vanderbilt Commodores, 24-10 - Finished behind Kentucky in the regular season with a 10-6 record in the SEC, but won the conference tournament, beating the number one team in the nation 71-64. It’s their first time to win the tournament since 1952, earning them the #5 seed in the East Regional.
25. UNLV Rebels, 26-8 – Lost to New Mexico in the conference tournament, getting the #6 seed in the South Regional.