2011 Selection Saturday: Full Bracket
By Paul Myerberg // Mar 12, 2012
Cutting the bracket down to 32 teams – after going with a 68-team tournament last fall – leaves several talented teams in the cold. Among the B.C.S. conferences: Missouri, Texas, N.C. State and Auburn. Among the non-B.C.S. conferences: Ohio, Louisiana-Lafayette, Toledo and Wyoming. But trimming the list creates a very strong 32-team bracket, one with very few easy pairings outside the first round. Imagine the possibilities: Oregon hosting Virginia in the first round; a week later, if all goes according to plan, the Ducks meet T.C.U. in the round of 16. U.S.C. isn’t eligible, but if the Trojans weren’t under a postseason ban, they’d probably slot in as a three seed.
A quick rundown of the ground rules: records are from the end of the regular season; conference champions earn an automatic bid; the higher seeds host in the first round; beginning with the second round, all games are at a neutral site; there is no conference limit; and there are no play-in games. Now, the bracket.
8 Arkansas State at 1 Alabama
5 Oklahoma at 4 Southern Mississippi
6 Baylor at 3 Houston
7 Notre Dame at 2 Arkansas
8 B.Y.U. at 1 Oklahoma State
5 Clemson at 4 Georgia
6 Northern Illinois at 3 Michigan
7 Nebraska at 2 Stanford
8 Louisiana Tech at 1 L.S.U.
5 West Virginia at 4 Kansas State
6 Florida State at 3 Michigan State
7 Penn State at 2 Boise State
8 Virginia at 1 Oregon
5 South Carolina at 4 T.C.U.
6 Cincinnati at 3 Virginia Tech
7 Georgia Tech at 2 Wisconsin
In the East bracket, the second round games will be played in Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field – Temple’s home field. The South bracket will move onto Bright House Networks Stadium in Orlando. The Midwest will play in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The West bracket will play its second round in San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium.
As noted earlier, the national semifinals and national final will be played in the Rose Bowl. That’s a perfect venue for the final two games of the F.B.S. tournament; it’s also due to be one of the rotating sites when – or if, I guess – the N.C.A.A. does adopt the four-team playoff first suggested by the Big Ten.
Which region hosts the toughest bracket? The East seems to be the deepest: Alabama and Arkansas lead, but Oklahoma and Baylor would be a tough out in the second round should either advance. The West is also strong, especially with South Carolina the best No. 5 seed in the tournament.
Tags: Alabama, Arkansas, Arkansas State, B.Y.U., Baylor, Boise State, Cincinnati, Clemson, College football playoff, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Houston, Kansas State, L.S.U., Louisiana Tech, Michigan, Michigan State, N.C.A.A. tournament, Nebraska, Northern Illinois, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Penn State, South Carolina, Southern Mississippi, Stanford, T.C.U., Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Wisconsin
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