As Selection Sunday is just more than a week away, we've officially entered the homestretch, so bracket updates will be happening a bit more frequently. My next projection will come Monday morning (change: just a Bubble Watch update for Sunday), and it will reflect the weekend's conference championship games and all of the other action going on across the country, as the major conferences close out their regular seasons.
The biggest change in this projection is Kansas State's rise to take the top seed in the West region away from Duke. Both lost tough road tests on Wednesday -- the Wildcats to Kansas, top seed in the Midwest, and the Blue Devils to Maryland. It's very close between the two teams, but K-State has the advantage for the moment because they have a slightly better road/neutral mark (10-3 vs. 9-5), they fell to a higher quality opponent in their most recent setback and they don't have a loss against a team outside of the RPI Top 100, something the Blue Devils have, thanks to a road loss at N.C. State.
Expect Ohio State and Villanova to challenge Duke and Kansas State for the fourth top seed as conference tournaments play out late next week.
Syracuse remains top seed in the South, while Kentucky holds the one spot in the East.
Here's a look at who's in and out heading into the weekend. Congratulations go out to Cornell, who became the first team to book a official place in the field of 65 on Friday night. The Big Red claimed the Ivy crown in resounding fashion, crushing Brown, 95-76, in Providence.
Click any linked team name to visit that school's SB Nation blog.
Top Four Seeds: Kansas, Syracuse, Kentucky, Kansas State
Last Four In: Florida, Rhode Island, San Diego State, UAB
First Four Out: Mississippi State, Mississippi, South Florida, Connecticut
Next Four Out: Dayton, Arizona State, Washington, Memphis
Temple (4), Xavier (6), Richmond (7), Rhode Island (12)
UTEP (10), UAB (13)
Gonzaga (4), St. Mary's (11)
One Bid Leagues (22): America East, Atlantic Sun, Big Sky, Big South, Big West, Colonial, Horizon, Ivy, Metro Atlantic, Mid-American, Mid-Eastern, Missouri Valley, Northeast, Ohio Valley, Pacific-10, Patriot, Southern, Southland, Southwestern, Summit, Sun Belt, Western Athletic
Visit Bubble Watch for a detailed look at the last few teams in and the group that hopes to replace them, along with game previews and recaps.