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Bracketology: Minnesota "in" despite recent slide

Minnesota is still on the 10-seed line in Lunardi’s latest, despite five-game skid

NCAA Basketball: Wisconsin at Minnesota Jordan Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

The latest Bracketology from ESPN’s Joe Lunardi is out today and the Gophers are still in decent shape as an at-large, projected for the 10 seed in the Midwest region. While the Gophers have fallen since they peaked as a six seed a few weeks ago, the fact that a national pundit doesn’t even have them as one of the Last Four In should speak to how they’re early season successes are being received.

Long story short, the postseason hopes for the Gophers are still viable despite a current five-game losing streak and they still control their destiny.

After a brutal schedule to start the conference season, Minnesota now faces teams currently in the bottom half of the conference and now have five games in a row against teams with sub-.500 records in the conference. Their margin for error has evaporated, however, and they really can’t afford to lose another home game.

Key Metrics:

  • RPI is 24; SOS: 5 (no losses to teams below an RPI of 75)
  • KenPom: 44; SOS: 36

A couple other notes:

  • Despite being “down” the Big Ten is second in the nation in terms of bids by conference. Lunardi is giving bids to Wisconsin (4), Maryland (5), Purdue (6), Northwestern (7), Michigan State (8), Indiana (9), Minnesota (10), and Michigan (11).
  • While the Gophers are only 3-6 in the conference, clearly their road wins over Purdue and Northwestern are paying huge dividends. Never underestimate the power of a road conference win. Curse that missed Penn State opportunity.
  • Three teams (Mount St. Mary’s, Georgia Southern, and Arkansas) are projected to make the tournament from Minnesota’s non-con slate.