2023 NCAA Tournament bracket expert picks: No. 1 seeds predicted ahead of Sunday’s Selection show

When the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee released a preview of the top 16 teams of the 2023 NCAA Tournament on Feb. 18, Alabama, Houston, Purdue and Kansas were penciled in as No. 1 seeds. While all four teams still have compelling cases for inclusion in the top starting lineup entering Selection Sunday, some others have also entered the conversation.

Marquette is 28-6 after sweeping the Big East Tournament and regular-season titles, and 29-5 UCLA has been one of the hottest teams in the country over the past three months. Also, Texas (26-8) upset Kansas (17-7) in the Big 12 Tournament title game on Saturday to make its own case for a No. 1 seed after finishing behind the Jayhawks in the regular season standings of the Big 12. Still, KU has 17 Quadrant 1 winners, a total unmatched nationally.

So, who will end up on the No. 1 line when the 2023 March Madness bracket is revealed? We’ll find out when the full field of 68 is revealed Sunday at 6 p.m. ET on the 2022 NCAA Tournament Selection Show live on CBS.

Brackets are here! Return to your pools and join us Challenges of men and women for a chance to win a new SUV and a dream college basketball trip!

Read on for CBS Sports Bracketology expert Jerry Palm’s top projections along with a breakdown of how our college basketball experts would vote if they were on the panel.

View NCAA Tournament Bracketology

Here’s how Palm has projected top four seeds in the NCAA Tournament. Check out his full Bracketology here.

Special NCAA Tournament picks

See how our college basketball staff would vote if they were on the selection committee.

Gary Paris: Kansas is just 2-2 in its last four games, but is still likely to be the No. 1 overall seed thanks to its nation-best 17 Q1 wins. After that, the next three No. 1 seeds are easy to identify. Sure, Texas and Marquette make logical cases, but the other three No. 1 seeds will be the AAC champion (Houston), the SEC champion (Alabama) and the Big Ten champion (Purdue). The only school that had a chance to crack that team heading into the weekend was UCLA, but its chances vanished when the Bruins lost to Arizona in the Pac-12 Tournament championship game late Saturday.

Matt Norlander: I am a passionate supporter of the philosophy of loss. Kansas has the most losses of any team against a No. 1 seed. And here I put the Jayhawks over the top. The reason is obvious: KU’s 17 first-quarter wins, an NCAA record. Bill Self’s team has 21 total Q1+Q2 wins, which is three ahead of Purdue heading into Sunday. Kansas’ entire resume is basically undisputed at this point. Houston will get the No. 1 seed the old-fashioned way: by having the best winning percentage/record on the board. The Cougars are the only two-loss team in college basketball entering Sunday. Purdue takes the slight edge over Texas for the final No. 1 seed, this one before the Big Ten Tournament title game, due to the Boilermakers ranking ahead of the Longhorns in four of the six team scorecards. That’s basically it. If Purdue falls to Penn State, I’d put UT as the final No. 1 and they’d fall to Purdue fifth overall.

Kyle Boone: Kansas and Alabama will be No. 1 seeds and one of them will be the No. 1 overall seed. Of that I am sure. The forecast gets cloudier beyond them. Given Purdue’s resume — one Big Ten title, nine Quadrant 1 wins, seven weeks spent as No. 1 — it should get the nod as the third. The fourth No. 1 seed should come down to two Texas schools in current Big 12 member and soon-to-be SEC member Texas and current AAC member and soon-to-be Big 12 member Houston. I’ll give Texas the nod as the eventual No. 1 seed, given that its win over Kansas in the Big 12 Tournament title game pushed it to 14 wins in the first quarter of the season — second-most in the game and double its total Houston. The Cougars have dominated all season and have done nearly as well as they can with their schedule and in their conference, but if the committee affects Texas’ place in the toughest league in college basketball this season, resumes will likely give the Longhorns a slight nod. .

David Cobb: UCLA’s loss in the Pac-12 Tournament title game simplified that decision for the committee. If those teams had struggled in their tournaments, maybe a case for the Bruins and Marquette could have been No. 1 seeds. But most metrics show that these four are far from the pack. Although Kansas played poorly in the Big 12 Tournament title game, the Jayhawks built up enough of a cushion during the Big 12 regular season to still be the No. 1 overall seed.

Chip Patterson: The decision on which four teams to line up seems fairly straightforward and non-controversial, as I imagine the real debate heading into the weekend was about the fourth No. 1 seed, and Purdue looks to win those tiebreakers with a potential Big Ten tournament title streak that includes a few more Q1 wins. As for the No. 1 overall seed, I’m on board with thinking that the loss column should matter. Kansas holds the NET season record (as of 2019) for most first-quarter wins with 17, but no team with more than five losses has ever taken the No. 1 overall seed, and Kansas has seven. That’s why I’ll go with Houston, which is the No. 1 team in the forecast metrics, the No. 1 team in the NET and has only one blemish (a Sunday visit from Aaron McKee and Temple in late January) in a otherwise flawless set of results.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *