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What to Keep in Mind for 2022 March Madness

Minds become cluttered when March Madness begins. Not only is there a massive quantity of games to watch, but there is plenty of useful information that could be helpful.

Out of all of the information out there, several trends stick out due to their relevance for each tournament. However, other useful information can be sneaky threats that are easy to overlook.

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But don’t sweat it, we have got you covered. Here is a handful of overlooked information that could be very useful to keep in mind for March Madness.

Will Long Layoffs Be a Problem?

Depending on when conference tournaments take place, important teams will go over 10 days without playing one game before March Madness.

The West Coast Conference (WCC), Ohio Valley Conference (OVC), and the Missouri Valley Conference all finished their conference tournaments by March 8. The Round of 64 in March Madness does not begin until March 17 and 18. This is a long period without playing for teams that have it rolling.

For instance, Murray State could be college basketball’s best mid-major and is in the midst of a 20-game winning streak. The Racers continued their tear after winning the OVC Tournament on March 5. Could this long period without a game harm Murray State?

The Racers are expected to receive a No. 8 or 9 seed in the NCAA Tournament. There will be no “easy” first-round game for Murray State. They will likely battle a team from a major conference, like the ACC or SEC, that has only been out of play for about a week. Murray State showing no rust after not playing for either 12 or 13 days seems unlikely.

Other teams are affected by a similar situation. Gonzaga wrapped up its conference tournament on March 8, it will be about a week and a half since the Zags played a game. A team like Gonzaga should be fine since its opponent will be a No. 16 seed in the first round, but teams like Murray State have a tight battle right off the bat.

Other mid-majors that could begin a Cinderella journey in the first round are dealing with the same issue as Murray State. Both Chattanooga and South Dakota State could be popular upset picks, but the first round will be both teams’ first game in a week and a half.

Long layoffs are a sneaky threat to keep in mind for March Madness.

West Coast Title Drought

National championships have been absolutely dominated by the east coast over the last 23 tournaments. Connecticut (4), Duke (3), North Carolina (3), Kentucky (2), Florida (2), and Villanova (2) make up 16 of the last 23 national titles.

A West Coast team has not won a national title since Arizona in 1997.

Not only is this something to keep in mind for potential Pac-12 teams to win a title, but it also applies to Gonzaga that’s located in Spokane, Washington.

Two West Coast teams are the current national title favorites. Gonzaga leads the pack at +400 and Arizona has the second-highest odds for a national championship at +600.

Tread carefully with West Coast squads given their history.

Teams Coming in Red-Hot

Teams playing their best basketball when the NCAA Tournament rolls around is absolutely vital. As they say, it’s all about getting hot at the right time.

Here are the most notable active win streaks in college basketball:

  • As mentioned, Murray State has won 20 straight. The Racers could be the best mid-major in the country, ranking 25th in Kenpom with great balance.
  • South Dakota State is on a 21-game win streak, which is the longest active winning streak in the country. The Jackrabbits dominated the Summit League finishing 18-0 in conference play.
  • Colgate nearly upset No. 3 seed Arkansas in the first round of 2021 March Madness. After winning the Patriot League Tournament yet again, Colgate is on a 15-game winning streak and will likely be a No. 14 seed for the second year in a row.
  • After winning the Sun Belt Tournament as a No. 3 seed, Georgia State is on a 10-game win streak. The Panthers’ path will be dangerous, projecting as a 15 seed.

Several schools will come out of the major conference tournaments blazing hot. Keep an eye on the teams who win the Big 12, SEC, and Big 10 tournaments. These conference tournaments are absolutely loaded; whoever survives this carnage will be lethal in March Madness.

All of this information can be easily overlooked. Many tend to overanalyze March Madness once the bracket is revealed on Selection Sunday. Keep these tidbits in mind, they can be extremely useful when filling out brackets.

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