How does the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 break down by conference? | Zagsblog
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Tuesday / May 21.
  • How does the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 break down by conference?

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    The Sweet 16 is set and the Big East and SEC are the big winners so far.

    Both leagues have three teams apiece in the round of 16.

    Creighton, Xavier and UConn represent the Big East, while Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee advanced for the SEC. Alabama is the No. 1 overall seed and the betting favorite to cut the nets down in Houston.

    The Big 12 — which won the last two NCAA championships — has two teams in the Sweet 16 in Texas and Kansas State, but the last two national champions — Kansas and Baylor — are out.

    The Big Ten — which hasn’t won a national championship since Michigan State in 2000 — put eight teams into the Big Dance and only has one team, the Spartans, still standing.

    No. 1 Purdue, the Big Ten regular-season champion, was stunned in the first round by No. 16 FDU in East Region, while No. 4 Indiana, arguably the league’s second-best team, fell to No. 5 Miami in the second round in the Midwest.

    The Pac-12, whose last winner was Arizona in 1997 when Bill Clinton was in the White House, is down to one team in UCLA, which faces a potent Gonzaga team in the Sweet 16 in the West in Las Vegas. That game will be a rematch of their classic 2021 Final Four encounter in which the Bulldogs won 93-90 on Jalen Suggs’ buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

    Eight conferences have one team apiece, including Houston of the American Athletic Conference. The Cougars are the second betting favorite to win the title.

    Along with the Big Ten. Pac-12 and American, the ACC (Miami), Conference USA (FAU), WCC (Gonzaga), Ivy League (Princeton) and Mountain West (San Diego State) all have one team standing.

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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