Bubble Insider: Magic numbers
For six bubble teams, the road to a bid is a long one
As the major conference tournaments got under way Tuesday, it became easier to see exactly what each bubble team needs to secure a bid in the Big Dance. To borrow a term from baseball, the number of wins required to grab said berth is called the magic number.
Looking at the conference tournament schedules, we've deduced the win total required by each bubble team to be assured of a berth in the bracket. On Tuesday, we examined which teams had the easiest paths to go deep into their conference tournament, finding that Memphis, Washington, Dayton and Minnesota looked strong. Today, you'll see the open road can be a blessing and a curse.
Most of these teams linger on the bubble because they lack big wins. If no one stands to oppose you, the deeper you have to go to obtain those W's. As we lined these teams up, it quickly became apparent that at least six teams -- including Memphis, Washington, Arizona State, Rhode Island, UAB and San Diego State -- will have to walk a very long road to assure themselves of a bid.
To see which teams have the hardest paths and exactly what they need to accomplish to earn an NCAA Tournament bid, you must be an ESPN Insider.
MORE MEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL HEADLINES
- SMU's Kennedy cleared, will face Michigan
- E. Kentucky never trails, routs No. 18 Miami
- Game-worn MJ shoes from UNC sell for $33K
- Dayton dismisses pair for violation of rules
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
Insider's Bracket Bundle
Insider helps college basketball fans stay on top of the NCAA tournament field as it forms.
Joe Lunardi: Behind the Bracket
Insiders get Bracketology details the rest of the public doesn't. See which teams and which games are impacting the bracket, why it's moving and what may happen next.
Lunardi's Tournament Odds/Rundown
Bracketology tells you only how the bracket looks on that day. Lunardi's odds tell you how it's likely to look come Selection Sunday.
See which bubble teams are bound to get bounced and which are likely to crack the field of 65.
Inside the Bracket
Hard-core analysis of squads set to endure the Madness of March.
See how the teams stack up in each region of Bracketology.