What the Prediction Machine said will happen in the NCAA tournament

What the Prediction Machine said will happen in the NCAA tournament

What the Prediction Machine said will happen in the NCAA tournament

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by Dan Uthman, USA TODAY Sports, and John Ewing, Prediction Machine's Director of Research and Analytics

WHAS11.com

Posted on March 17, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Updated Monday, Mar 17 at 10:53 AM

(USA TODAY) -- PredictionMachine.com ran 50,000 simulations of the NCAA tournament bracket Sunday night. Based on those simulations, here are teams to stand by and some to avoid when projecting the next three weeks.

CINDERELLAS
Double-digit seeds with the best chance to reach the Sweet 16:
Providence, the East’s No. 11 seed, has a 20.3% chance of reaching the Sweet 16. The Friars won the first championship tournament of the “new” Big East and face No. 6 North Carolina on Friday in San Antonio.

Other teams with similar chances include South 10 seed Stanford (18.8%), West 12 seed North Dakota State, Midwest 10 seed Arizona State (17.2%) and Midwest 11 seed Tennessee (29.9% if it can win its play-in game).

SLEEPERS
Teams seeded fifth or worse with the best chance to reach the Final Four:
South 5 seed VCU has a difficult round of 64 matchup with Stephen F. Austin, which is unbeaten since a November loss to Texas and is second only to VCU in turnovers created per game. But the Rams, which made the Final Four in 2011, has an 11.3% chance to make it to AT&T Cowboys Stadium in April.

Other teams seeded fifth or worse with better with the best chances of making the Final Four include South 6 seed Ohio State (8.3%), West 6 seed Baylor (7.0%), West 7 seed Oregon (7.0%) and South 7 seed New Mexico (6.8%).

BUSTS
Teams seeded fourth or better with the worst chance of reaching the Elite Eight:
The highest-seeded team with the least chance to make it past the Sweet 16 is Kansas. The Jayhawks, the South Region’s 2 seed, have only a 23.2% chance of making the region final. Those odds are better than some of their peers, however.

UCLA, the 4 seed in the South, has just a 16.8% chance of the making the Elite Eight, West 4 seed San Diego State has an 18.6% chance, East 3 seed Iowa State has a 20% chance, and South 3 seed Syracuse has a 21.5% chance.

FIRST 1 SEED OUT
The 1 seed with the worst tournament odds isn’t Virginia, which didn’t enter the picture for the East’s top seed until beating Duke on Sunday. And it’s not Wichita State, whose strength of schedule has brought criticism despite its 34-0 record.

The top seed with the toughest road is Arizona, the No. 1 seed in the West. There is a 13.7% chance Arizona will fall to 16 seed Weber State on Friday, and it has just a 33.8% chance of reaching the West Region final in Anaheim.

MOST LIKELY FINAL FOUR
Florida (South 1 seed), Louisville (Midwest 4 seed), Michigan State (East 4 seed) and Creighton (West 3 seed).

BEST REGION
The Midwest has a 31.1% chance of fielding the national champion, according to Prediction Machine’s power rankings.

Daniel Uthman is USA TODAY Sports’ senior editor, Colleges. He is on Twitter @DanUthman. John Ewing, Prediction Machine’s Director of Research and Analytics, is on Twitter @JohnEwing. See all of Prediction Machine’s NCAA tournament bracket odds here.

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