A lot has been said about the inconsistency of the Tar Heels this season, and it’s a big reason why their NCAA Tournament standing has been influx since January. An uneven 5-4 finish to close out the regular season, didn’t help Tar Heel fans sleep better at night, as every game down the stretch had NCAA Tournament implications on the line. The good news is that of those 5 wins, 3 came on their home floor against the likes of Florida State, Louisville and Duke. The only loss that really hurt them was their one lone home loss of the season to Marquette, a bottom feeder in a watered down Big East.
That win over Duke in the regular season finale solidified the Tar Heels place in the NCAA Tournament, all while essentially knocking the Blue Devils out of tournament contention. Which means Carolina now has a chance to improve their tournament seeding, with a strong showing in the ACC Tournament. Here is where every major publication has the Tar Heels right now, as we’re less than a week away from the Selection Sunday:
Bracket specialist Joe Lunardi has been kind to the Tar Heels all season long, despite their uneven play at times. Their regular season sweep of Duke, to go with home wins over FSU & Louisville really helped this team. Of their 9 losses, only one wasn’t a Quad 1 loss, with that coming against Marquette. Lunardi currently has Carolina, as 9 seed in Region 4. That means if they were to make a solid run in Greensboro, they can work themselves into an 8 or even a 7 seed.
The people over at CBS, have been a lot harder on Carolina during the season, as it was growing apparent that the Tar Heels would have to play, and win their way into the NCAA Tournament this season. Oddly enough though, they have Carolina slated to play the same team as Joe Lunardi from ESPN (LSU), but as a 10 seed in what they are calling the Bankers Life 2 Region. Remember with the NCAA Tournament being played exclusively in Indianapolis, there aren’t regions like usual in March Madness. Every team will find out what part of Indy they will be playing in, upon finding out their seed, and matchup on Selection Sunday.
Like ESPN, Fox has Carolina on the 9 line, and facing a SEC opponent, this time in Missouri. Now the Tigers are going to need a strong showing in the SEC Tournament to feel safe come Selection Sunday, but like ESPB, FOX does allow for UNC to move a potential seed line or two, if they have a good showing in Greensboro. In this projected bracket, Michigan and Texas are opponents the Tar Heels could see if they make it to the second weekend of March Madness, and we all know the history UNC has with both of those schools in the tournament.
This is what makes March fun for those of us invested in college basketball, as the only thing that is certain, is uncertainty. After multiple times this season where it wasn’t known if the Tar Heels would have a chance to compete for a national championship, they are all but certain to be dancing come Sunday evening.
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