It's time once again for our weekly installment of Bracketology. This week finds the Wisconsin Badgers sitting at home once again come tournament time for the second week in a row. The Badgers fell from #12 to #16 in the pairwise after a sweep at the hands of North Dakota. They have fallen even further this week with the sweep at the hands of Minnesota-Duluth. We now sit at #24 in the PWR, not even sniffing the tournament bubble.
Niagara is now the projected Atlantic Hockey winner due to them having the highest PWR. (When there are more conference games later in the year we'll use the first place team in Atlantic Hockey for the projected auto bid, but for now we'll go with the highest in the PWR.)
As an additional note, five WCHA teams are now projected to make the tournament, up from 3 last week. That is more like it.
Step 1: Pick the 16 tournament teams
4. Notre Dame
6. Boston University
7. New Hampshire
8. Boston College
9. North Dakota
16. Atlantic Hockey Champion (Niagara)
Bubble Teams (in order): RPI, Merrimack, Western Michigan, Quinnipiac, Dartmouth
Step 2: Assign the seeds
No. 1 seeds: UNO, Yale, Minnesota-Duluth, Notre Dame
No. 2 seeds: Michigan, BU, UNH, BC
No. 3 seeds: North Dakota, Miami, Denver, Union
No. 4 seeds: Minnesota, Maine, Alaska, Niagara
Step 3: Place host teams in regionals
Right now we have two host schools in the tournament. New Hampshire is hosting the Northeast Regional in Manchester, and Yale is hosting the East Regional in Bridgeport. Therefore, UNH is placed as the #2 seed in Manchester and Yale is the #1 seed in Bridgeport.
Step 4: Place number 1 seeds in regionals
Number 1 seeds are placed based on proximity to regional site.
No. 1 Nebraska-Omaha is placed in the West Regional in St. Louis
No. 2 Yale (Host) is placed in the East Regional in Bridgeport
No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth is placed in the Mid-West Regional in Green Bay
No. 4 Notre Dame is placed in the Northeast Regional in Manchester
Step 5: Place the other 12 teams avoiding intra-conference match ups if possible Begin by filling in each bracket by banding groups. Remember that teams are not assigned to the regional closest to their campus sites by ranking order within the banding.
If this is the case, then the committee should seed so that the quarterfinals are seeded such that the four regional championships are played by No. 1 v. No. 8, No. 2 v. No. 7, No. 3 v. No. 6 and No. 4 v. No. 5.
Number 2 seeds:
No. 8 Boston College is placed in No. 1 Nebraska-Omaha's Regional, the West Regional
No. 7 New Hampshire (host) is placed in No. 4 Notre Dame's Regional, the Northeast Regional
No. 6 BU is placed in No. 2 Yale's Regional, the East Regional
No. 5 Michigan is placed in No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth's Regional, the Mid-West Regional
Number 3 seeds:
No. 9 North Dakota is placed No. 8 BC's Regional, the West Regional
No. 10 Miami is placed in No. 7 New Hampshire's Regional, the Northeast Regional
No. 11 Denver is placed in No. 6 BU's Regional, the East Regional
No. 12 Union is placed in No. 5 Michigan's Regional, the Mid-West Regional
Number 4 seeds:
No. 13 Minnesota is placed in No. 4 Notre Dame's Regional, the Northeast Regional
No. 14 Maine is placed in No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth's Regional, the Mid-West Regional
No. 15 Alaska is placed in No. 2 Yale's Regional, the East Regional
No. 16 Niagara is placed in No. 1 Nebraska-Omahas Regional, the West Regional
Our bracket as we have it set up:
East Regional (Bridgeport, Connecticut)
2 Yale vs 15 Alaska
6 Boston University vs 11 Denver
West Regional (St. Louis, Missouri)
1 Nebraska-Omaha vs 16 Niagara
8 Boston College vs 9 North Dakota
Northeast Regional (Manchester, New Hampshire)
4 Notre Dame vs 13 Minnesota
7 New Hampshire vs 10 Miami
Mid-West Regional (Green Bay, Wisconsin)
3 Minnesota-Duluth vs 14 Maine
5 Michigan vs 12 Union
Our first concern is to avoid intra-conference first round match ups. We have none which is great.
Bracket integrity looks strong.
Attendance is better this week and there are no changes to be made that wouldn't either ruin bracket integrity or create and intra-conference match up. So this is my bracket for the week. Pretty easy week.
Week by week Wisconsin tournament tracker:
Week 1: #12 overall seed vs Michigan in Mid-West Regional in Green Bay
Week 2: First team out of the tournament, #16 in the PWR
Week 3: Falling further away from the tournament, #24 in the PWR
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