Before we even get to the bracket, let's look at how the committee explained its selections.
Unbalanced scheduling is common in the high-majors (save the Pac-10), yet that's the reason some teams -- like Syracuse and Kansas State -- didn't get into the field. Syracuse didn't have enough wins over NCAA Tournament teams among its 10 conference victories. Kansas State won only one game against the stronger South Division teams, and that was noted among the 10 wins the Wildcats earned this season. Unbalanced scheduling hurt those teams, but a true round-robin, and going 10-8 in the Pac-10, actually helped Stanford, according to Walters.
Drexel was done in more by the way it played in the Colonial than by how it performed out of conference. The committee celebrated the Dragons' nonconference road wins -- like Syracuse, Villanova and Creighton -- but going 1-5 against the top teams in the CAA (Old Dominion, VCU and Hofstra) essentially eliminated the Dragons.
Not all Sunday games are created equal. The committee had one spot open Sunday, and it was going to go to NC State, if it won the ACC tournament with a win over North Carolina, or to Arkansas. NC State lost, so the Hogs were in -- even though they were losing to Florida in the SEC tournament final while the selection committee was making its decisions. Walters also said that Kansas was a No. 1 seed even before the Big 12 game was finished -- so if the Jayhawks had lost, then they still would have been a No. 1 seed. Their tournament win prevented Texas from possibly moving up from the third line to a No. 2 seed.
Conference tournaments do matter, however. Walters said UCLA's inability to get to the Pac-10 tournament final, something the other four No. 1 candidates did, eliminated the Bruins from consideration for a No. 1 seed.
The toughest call of the day apparently was eliminating Syracuse, in large part because of the human element. Walters said that Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim is a personal friend, and he was hoping he would remain so after the Orange didn't get a bid. Overall, Walters said this was the toughest field to put together in his five seasons on the selection committee, essentially with 104 teams winning 20 or more games this season after a previous high of 78 teams accomplishing the feat last season. That put more teams in the bubble pool, according to Walters.
Now, on to the interpretation of the bracket:
Hot No. 10: Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt said earlier Sunday that he wasn't sure whether the Yellow Jackets were going to get a bid. But he said that if they did, he was convinced they could win a few games because Tech's younger players are in a groove. As a No. 10 seed, Georgia Tech might not be the favorite against seventh-seeded UNLV on Friday in Chicago, but it certainly could be a hot choice to get to the Sweet 16 with a struggling second-seeded Wisconsin potentially on deck in round 2.