The selection show turned out to be very favorable to the Florida Gators today, as they grabbed the #1 overall seed in the entire field -- beating out fellow #1 seeds in Ohio State, Kansas and North Carolina.
To the right is the bracket the Gators will be playing in: The Midwest. You can view the full brackets of the four regions all over the place, or you can just easily click on this link (PDF).
Now, a few quick thoughts on the overall selection (with a preview of the midwest run for the Gators coming tomorrow night, hopefully):
- Florida gets the overall #1 seed today, which came as a surprise seeing the way Ohio State breezed through their schedule over the last few months. Don't get me wrong -- Florida's the team to beat in this NCAA tournament -- but I think the Buckeyes probably should have got that title. Now, before you say that Florida beat Ohio State by 26 points, that came in December. The Buckeyes had a pretty-much perfect second half of the season and the Gators had that skid late. Of course I'll take it but it took me by surprise.
- The toughest bracket is the East, where UNC has Georgetown, Wazzou and Texas on their heels. That is very, very good group of teams in the top four seeds. Expect to see a lot of high-energy games that make for some great excitement coming out of the East. Next in line in terms of overall strength is the West, South and Midwest.
- UCLA gets the West bracket as a #2 seed. While I'm sure they wanted the #1 seed, I'm sure they are pretty happy to be in the position they currently are. They'll take on 15-seed Weber State in their first tournament game.
- Arkansas gets in on the heels of a solid SEC run, but c'mon they got blown out today by the Gators. FSU, who beat Florida earlier in the season (w/o Corey Brewer, but that's just me being bitter) gets left out, as do teams like Syracuse and Drexel. Illinois and Purdue, two big-ten bubble teams, as well as the Stanford Cardinal also got in. Illinois could be a dangerous 12 seed, so watch out Virginia Tech.
- Kentucky gets in as an eight, Tennessee as a five, Arkansas as a 12 and Vanderbilt as a six. Not the strongest showing by the SEC in this one, but what do you expect? The conference just wasn't that strong this season. Vanderbilt and Arkansas will have to survive that East bracket.