Selection Sunday recap: Iowa State, Iowa women on collision course to meet in Sweet 16
Welcome to our Selection Sunday live blog.
This evening will mark the first true NCAA tournament bracket reveal in three years after the 2020 tournament was canceled and last year's edition was a single-site affair in Indianapolis due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We're now back to eight first-round sites (plus the First Four in Dayton) and four regional sites before the college basketball world converges on New Orleans next month for the Final Four.
The NCAA Tournament, in all its glory, is back.
Today will be an eventful day both nationally, with five leagues set to crown men's conference tournament champions, and locally, with Iowa playing for its first league tournament championship since 2006 and Iowa State set to earn its first NCAA Tournament bid since 2019.
The men's tournament isn't the only show today, however, as the women's tournament moved its selection from Monday to Sunday this year.
Here were the developments throughout the day on Selection Sunday.
Read the latest March Madness news
- Peterson: Iowa State facing controversy-stricken LSU makes for an intriguing NCAA opening act
- Selection Sunday: Iowa State draws 11 seed, first-round matchup with LSU
- Selection Sunday: Iowa basketball draws 5-seed, matchup with Richmond in Midwest Regional
- NCAA Tournament's biggest snubs on Selection Sunday
- Gonzaga holds No. 1 spot in Ferris Mowers Men's Basketball Coaches Poll entering NCAA Tournament
8:07 p.m.: Iowa coach Lisa Bluder on team's selection
"We thought we were probably going to be a 3 seed and were hoping for a 2. So we got the 2, thrilled with that. I thought we might be going to Wichita, but we went to Greensboro a few years back. And it was a good place for us. So we don't mind going back there."
7:41 p.m.: Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly on his team's selection
"This doesn't get old. It really doesn't. What our team has accomplished this year, to be selected in the NCAA Tournament is a good thing."
7:11 p.m.: A Sweet 16 collision course for Iowa/Iowa State
The stage is set for another possible showdown for Iowa and Iowa State in the Sweet 16. Both Iowa and Iowa State land in the Greensboro regional.
7:09 p.m.: People of Greensboro, brace for some Cy-Hawk fun
Iowa gets the No. 2 seed in Greensboro, will open against Illinois State. Will face Colorado-Creighton winner with a chance for
7:07 p.m.: Iowa State to face UT Arlington
Iowa State is a three seed and will face UT Arlington.
7:01 p.m.: Off and running
Women's show underway on ESPN.
6:36 p.m.: All smiles in Iowa City.
A happy mood inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena, where the Hawkeyes are awaiting their March path with plenty of excitement. Iowa likely looking at a No. 3 seed, but in which region? About 20 minutes until the reveal begins.
6:30 p.m.: Seeding the biggest question for Iowa State
We know Iowa State is in. We know the Cyclones are hosting. The biggest question: What seed will they be? Creme has had them as a two seed for awhile. But in a recent interview with The Register, he mentioned a loss in the semifinals to Texas could drop the Cyclones to a three. That happened. The conversation gets more interesting after Texas knocked off Baylor in the finals of the Big 12 title game today.
6:15 p.m.: Northern Iowa falls from Creme's projections
It's really not a shock. The Panthers were really only plugged in there in case they won today's Missouri Valley Conference championship game. Since the Panthers fell in the finals, they've dropped out of Creme's projections. If they would have won and stayed, it could have possibly created an interesting matchup. Creme had them, at one point, playing Oklahoma in the first round of the tournament. Oklahoma is coached by Iowa native Jennie Baranczy
5:55 p.m.: Clark Kellogg loves the Hawkeyes
His Final Four: Gonzaga; Iowa; Arizona and Kentucky. Kellogg has the Hawkeyes losing to Arizona. His champion? Gonzaga over Arizona.
5:52 p.m.: Seth Davis gives his Final Four
In case you were wondering, CBS resident basketball analyst Seth Davis gave his Final Four predictions: Gonzaga; Arizona; Kentucky and … Wisconsin.
In the title, he has Arizona winning it all.
6:05 p.m.: The latest projections
ESPN bracketologist Charlie Creme is the cream of the crop when it comes to women's basketball projections. Creme's latest projections came out shortly after 3 p.m., today. He has Iowa State as a two seed and Iowa as a three seed. What's most intriguing is that Creme has the two teams in the Greensboro regional and pegged to possibly play each other in the Sweet 16.
5:50 p.m.: The women's bracket reveal is next
We're just over an hour before the brackets are revelated for the women's tournament. Iowa and Iowa State have likely already locked up home court advantage for the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. The Hawkeyes and Cyclones will learn who they're facing when the bracket comes out at 7 p.m.
5:30 p.m.: Midwest bound
Both Iowa and Iowa State are staying in the Midwest.
The Hawkeyes earned a No. 5 seed in the Midwest region while the Cyclones are No. 11 in the same side of the bracket.
Iowa will play Richmond on Thursday in Buffalo while the Cyclones get LSU on Friday in Milwaukee.
If the Hawkeyes and Cyclones were to meet it wouldn't be until the Elie 8 round.
We'll have plenty of coverage from both unfolding here shortly.
5:20 p.m.: Halfway home
The West and South regions have been announced, and neither Iowa nor Iowa State has learned its fate.
Iowa State has likely fallen to a 10 (assuming Kansas and Baylor as one seeds) while Iowa still looks in line for a five, at worst.
5:10 update: Gaining clarity
The West region doesn't give us a great idea of where Iowa may land, but it does gives some clarity about Iowa State.
With Memphis a nine and Davidson a 10, it would suggest the Cyclones are going to be in the 8/9 game. Guessing Kansas and Baylor are ones, that means Iowa State would be opposite Arizona in San Diego.
That's just a guess, though.
The show rolls on.
4:45 p.m.: Pre-show update
The thing about the Big Ten championship game rolling right into the selection show is there is precious little time to savor cutting down nets until you start looking ahead.
That's an absolutely great problem to have, obviously.
But this here is a Selection Sunday live blog, so we're moving on immediately while Iowa enjoys its celebration over in Indianapolis.
The Hawkeyes seem most likely destined for a five seed in the NCAA tournament. That would pair them with the four seed for their first and second round destinations. The consensus four seeds right now are Illinois, UCLA, Arkansas and Providence.
The Hawks can't be matched with Illinois so that leaves UCLA, Arkansas and Providence. So Iowa could be looking at a trip West (San Diego, Portland) or East (Buffalo), plus wherever the fourth four goes (which is harder to predict).
For Iowa State, they seem most likely to be a nine or a 10 at the moment.
If they're a nine, Portland (No. 1 Gonzaga) and San Diego (No. 1 Arizona) seem the most likely destinations if Kansas and Baylor hold on to one seeds in Fort Worth (Iowa State can't be paired with their Big 12 brethren).
If they're a 10, the Cyclones could be looking at something closer to home in Milwaukee (No. 2 Wisconsin) or Indianapolis (No. 2 Kentucky). Otherwise it's likely Greenville, S.C., where expected No. 2 Duke and Auburn would be.
4:40 p.m.: Hawks are B1G champs
For the first time since Ne-Yo topped the Billboard Hot100, Iowa is the Big Ten tournament champs.
The Hawkeyes outlasted Purdue on Sunday to claim their first conference tournament title since 2006.
Iowa now enters the tournament as one of the hottest teams in the country after an impressive run in Indianapolis and having won nine of 10 overall.
The question for the Hawks now is did they do enough to leap up to a four seed? Seems like a longshot, but Fran McCaffery's team should feel good about having a five sewn up.
4:10 p.m.: Lunardi update
Joel Lunardi has been the lone voice that has teased a potential slide to the First Four for Iowa State, but his latest bracket - with only the Big Ten and AAC results outstanding - keeps the Cyclones away from Dayton.
3:50 p.m.: B1G stays close
Heck of a game between Iowa and Purdue going on right now. This game might not move the needle for seedings, but it's clear both of these teams are playing high-level basketball at the right time of the year.
3:20 p.m.: Halftime in Indy
Iowa is 20 minutes away from its first league crown in 16 years.
The Hawkeyes are up 35-32 on Purdue at halftime of the Big Ten tournament championship game.
Keegan Murray leads the Hawkeyes with nine points while Jaden Ivey has 10 for the Boilermakers.
The action picked up late in the half, so look for an entertaining final 20 - or maybe more?
3:00 p.m.: Tough ending for UNI women
Panthers held a six-point lead midway through the fourth quarter, but Illinois State methodically scores the final eight for a 50-48 win in the MVC Tournament title game. Redbirds get the auto bid as the No. 4 seed.
Third-seeded Panthers likely heading to the WNIT, potentially as a host.
- Dargan Southard
2:15 p.m.: Bid thief
Well, if you had Iowa State pegged as an 11 seed heading into play today, the Cyclones may have a problem.
With Richmond's defeat of Davidson in the A-10 championship, a bid thief as entered the field of 68.
That means, as described below, a team that previously had been slotted as part of the "regular" field is now headed to Dayton as part of the First Four.
If Iowa State was on that line - and ESPN's Joe Lunardi has them on it - the Cyclones could be headed to the dreaded play-in game.
It's definitely worth noting that Lunardi is the outlier here. Most bracketologists have Iowa State safely in the 10/9 line.
If you're inclined to trust Lunardi, though, it just made today more stressful for Cyclone fans.
Over at the SEC tournament, Tennessee had no trouble with Texas A&M, so no worry about the Aggies causing trouble for Iowa State.
The AAC championship between Memphis and Houston is also just about to tip off. This shouldn't be of much interest to Iowa or Iowa State as neither the Tigers nor the Cougars are likely in competition with either team for a seed line (and are both going to already be in the field regardless.
We're about 15 minutes from tip in Indy.
1:30 p.m.: The A-10 effect
Davidson and Richmond are currently engaged in a dogfight in the Atlantic 10 championship game, and its outcome could have a material effect on where Iowa State lands.
Davidson is the favorite and is expected to get an at-large bid even if they fall to Richmond. The Spiders, however, need to win to get a bid. If they become a bid thief, that not only shrinks the bubble by one, but moves a team from the "regular" field to the First Four.
Most bracketologists have Iowa State safe from this fate, but a prominent one, ESPN's Joe Lunardi, has Iowa State very close to that line. If you're a Cyclone fan, you'd likely prefer to see your team avoid Dayton. That means cheering for Davidson.
This situation is also true over at the SEC tournament, but Texas A&M is down 15 midway through the second half at the moment.
- Travis Hines
1 p.m.: Where things stand at the start
The headline today is the Hawkeyes taking on Purdue in the Big Ten Championship after their heart-stopping victory in the semifinals over Indiana.
Getting a tournament championship is a major accomplishment for its own sake - and that shouldn't ever be discounted - but the larger picture that will be taking focus is what benefit, if any, a win will garner Iowa with the selection committee.
As my colleague Chad Leistikow went into great detail about, the Hawkeyes may be able to play themselves into a No. 5 seed but probably not into consideration for a geographically-protected top-four seed. A loss may not knock Iowa from No. 5 consideration, but that scenario also keeps a six in play, per Chad's must-read analysis.
While the Hawkeyes are playing in Indianapolis, Iowa State will be watching the Selection Show from Hilton Coliseum after bowing out of the Big 12 tournament Thursday.
The Cyclones' situation is quite a bit more fluid than Iowa's. First-year coach T.J. Otzelberger's program was slotted as high as a No. 7 seed by some bracketologists ahead of their one-and-done showing in Kansas City, but now seemed destined from something between a nine and 11. Iowa State, at the moment, seems safe from the First Four and an early-week trip to Dayton, but the possibility is a little more likely than anyone probably in Ames would like.
Iowa State's fate will likely be determined by how much the selection committee, which features Cyclones athletic director Jamie Pollard (who will have to abstain from discussions about his Cyclones), values its nine Quad 1 rankings. Only Gonzaga, Baylor and Kansas — all likely/potential No. 1 seeds — enter the day with more.
— Travis Hines
Three Iowa teams in for women's tournament?
Iowa State has known its fate for awhile. The Cyclones are not only headed to the NCAA Tournament but likely locked up a spot hosting the first and second rounds.
The Hawkeyes have a hosting spot and likely a No. 3 seed locked up. The only Selection Sunday drama is where will the committee put Iowa? Does it get the geographically-friendly Wichita region, or will Lisa Bluder's squad get flung out to Spokane, Greensboro or Bridgeport?
As for UNI, the task is pretty straightforward. Win today in the MVC Championship and get in. Lose and it's likely the NIT. With a victory, the Panthers are likely looking at a 13-14 seed. Could they come to Ames or Iowa City? We shall see.
— Dargan Southard and Tommy Birch