Lately, Kentucky has been faced with falling multiple spots in the AP college basketball rankings despite blowing out Louisville and beating Georgia. This is mostly due to the value of teams they play, a loss to UCLA, and how close the Wildcats let the game get in wins against unranked teams. Not everything makes sense about the AP’s decisions, and the same can also be said about ESPN Bracketology.
ESPN college basketball analyst Joe Lunardi updated his weekly Bracketology board on Thursday with Kentucky rising a spot while being slotted into a different region. Lunardi has moved Kentucky multiple times all over the board. The latest version of the bracket has the Wildcats rising from a No. 5 seed to a No. 4 seed and being put in the East Region.
In the Bracketology before this week’s, the Wildcats were a No. 5 seed in the West Region where Arizona State is the No. 1 seed. With the updated bracket having Kentucky in the East, they would be slotted into the same region as the 2016 National Champion Villanova Wildcats, who currently sit at 13-1, for their No. 1 seed. Kentucky would also have the possibility of having to get through tough West Virginia and North Carolina teams.
Personally, I would rather see Kentucky in the West Region of the bracket. This would give the Wildcats an easier route to the Final Four, avoiding Duke, North Carolina, Virginia and Michigan State. This would also give the Wildcats their only chance at a game in March against this Louisville Cardinals team because something tells me the Cards won’t be making it to the Final Four this year.
There would be some drawbacks to being put into the West Region though. Kentucky would most likely play against an Oklahoma team with their star player Trae Young who is averaging 29.4 points with 10.6 assists. He was praised by Steph Curry earlier this week. Kentucky might also have to go against Arizona State’s depth of veteran players and top-notch defense, or possibly both.
There’s a lot of time left in this college season and a lot of variables undecided by each team, so this bracket isn’t permanent by any means. The Wildcats still have the possibility of adding injured freshman wing Jarred Vanderbilt to the squad which brings even more depth to this talented team. They also have inner issues to handle, like still needing to decide the role they’ll fill out for the team, and leaders still needing to step up. This team has not yet reached its full potential, and if it’s judged only on what it has accomplished so far, they’ll be busting more than a few brackets.
What do you think the best spot in the bracket would be for this team? Would you like to see a rematch against the Cardinals? Do you think the No. 4 seed is harsh or just right?