Jeff BorzelloESPN Staff Writer13:11 PM ET2 Minute Read
Alabama is the overall winner in the NCAA Tournament Men’s Basketball Select Committee bracket preview announced Saturday afternoon.
It would be Crimson Tide’s first 1-seed in program history.
“On the stretch of 13 wins in Quad 1 and 2,” said committee chairman Chris Reynolds. “They have a very strong resume and that win over Houston made them excel.”
The committee now announced its top 16 seedings, with Houston, Purdue and Kansas being No. 1 after Alabama.
Reynolds cited the Jayhawks’ 12 first-quadrant wins, by far the most in the country, and their No. 1 strength on the schedule as factors that propelled them to the top.
Texas, Arizona, Baylor, and UCLA were the 2 seeds, with Tennessee, Virginia, Iowa State, and Kansas State being the 3 seeds. The Cyclones are 4-6 in their last 10 games while Kansas State has lost five of their last seven games, but it’s a sign of the Big 12’s strength that both have still been in the top 12.
Reynolds said conference affiliation is not a factor in seeding or ingestion.
“We judge each team on their own merits,” he said.
Indiana, Marquette, Gonzaga and Xavier rounded out the top 16 as 4 seeds.
Reynolds said Creighton, Miami, Saint Mary’s and UConn are the other teams being debated for the final spots.
This is the season’s lone glow-clip reveal. Selection Sunday is March 12th.
“We could see some changes,” Reynolds said. “It will be interesting to see how the next three weeks develop.”
With five teams in the top 16, the Big 12 are having a “great year,” according to Reynolds.
“It’s been an incredible season so far for the league with quality wins for multiple teams in the conference, and that’s reflected in this revelation,” said Reynolds. “While we rate these teams as independent, there’s no escaping that the Big 12 are having a great year.”