Bracket Picks for the 2013 NCAA Tournament East Region

posted in NCAA Basketball, NCAA Tournament

In the East Region of 2013’s NCAA Bracket, Indiana stands out as a clear favorite.

2013 has been a topsy turvy year in NCAA Basketball, but Indiana has been near the top throughout. The Hoosiers’ play, thanks to high shooting percentages on offense and low shooting percentages on defense, has been strong all year. They rank #3 in our predictive ratings, a bit lower than most; our consensus adjusted rating places them second in the country behind Louisville.

#2 Miami

And the Hoosiers are fortunate to play in a bracket that isn’t especially strong. Though Miami could have easily received a #1 seed, the Hurricanes don’t stand out as a strong #2: they rank just eleventh in our predictive power ratings; other ratings systems have them even lower. We adjusted for the Hurricanes’ early struggles without Reggie Johnson, bumping them up nearly a point. However, even with that adjustment, the Canes rate as the second weakest #2 seed, and would be a clear underdog against Indiana in a regional final.

#3 Marquette and #4 Syracuse

There’s some good news for Miami, though: the bottom half of the East region has by far the weakest #3 seed. Marquette rates as our #19 team in Team Rankings’ predictive ratings, and we’re higher on them than most other systems are. The Golden Eagles could find themselves in trouble in a tough first round game against Davidson, and in a possible second round matchup against Butler projects as a close game.

Meanwhile, Syracuse, the second Big East team in the East Region, is seeded about right at #4. We have the Orange as the #14 team in the country, and the other major systems rate them similarly. Syracuse’s biggest early round challenge will be playing in Northern California with three Western teams: our similar games model shows that travel might affect the Orange.

#5 UNLV, #6 Butler, and the rest of the bracket

The lower seeded teams don’t stand out in the 2013 East Region.

With the exception of Davidson, who should probably be a #13 seed ahead of New Mexico State, Montana, and South Dakota State, no team seeded #5 or below in the East is the best at their seed line in this year’s NCAA Tournament. UNLV and Butler are #30 and #32 in our power ratings, respectively, suggesting that #8 seeds would be more appropriate. Ken Pomeroy is even harsher, rating them at #36 and #52.

Both teams face tough first round challenges: UNLV has to play a short drive from Cal’s home court in San Jose, while Butler could have a challenging matchup against Bucknell.

The 8-9 game between NC State and Temple projects as an uneven one where the favorite has a 2 in 3 chance to win. By contrast the Illinois-Colorado game projects as a tossup.


One of the more notable aspects of public picking data is the large number of people picking Miami. Indiana is the clear public favorite — and they should be — but an amazing 80% of public participants are picking one of those two schools to win the region.

That means that even in a region with relatively weak lower seeds, it may be a good strategy to go with a low-seeded sleeper or two in a large pool. Here’s what we recommend for the largest pools.

NEXT STEP: Get personalized bracket picks

  • Snowman

    Here we go again!!!
    I know these are all numbers based buttttttt…..
    In your predictive ranking miami number 11 hahahaahahaha really? Really? Really?
    U have duke and Michigan state ahead of miami! Miami who beat msu rather handily at home, and duke who miami beat almost twice, yea right………
    2nd off,
    U state the miami is clearly one of the weakest number 2s, then why did the committee ranks them as the over all number 5 team?
    Anyway I will use all your stats to hopefully make money, espically when miami plays Indiana.

  • Snowman

    U said miami miami is the weakest of the 2 ranked teams. Please explain how they have the second highest win odds to win the whole thing, for 2nd seeded teams, and to have Dook above them is obscene !!!!!

  • Justin Geoghegan

    I’m in a group that allows five brackets. Any advice on how I should differentiate between them?

  • David Hess

    I’d use the 5 options listed for your scoring system from our bracket finder:

  • Robert Nemanich

    Miami fanatics, the field gets flatter each year, actually the statistical regression is the lacking of tourney experience, much more than one expects, esp on the second day turnaround, watch out game 2, 3 and esp 4

  • R

    Who the hell is Robert Johnson?

  • David Hess

    Whoops, somebody must have been listening to Crossroad when they were righting this:

    Should have been REGGIE Johnson. I fixed it in the text. Thanks for the heads up.

  • Snowman

    At Robert,
    Did u not watch the acc tournament ?
    Miami played really good for 3 days in a row. Unlike Indianna or duke who lost earlier in there games.
    The first set of games I don’t see any problem, it will be the 2nd weekend where it could be fun!!!!
    But I have final 4 tix, so I need miami to make the trip:)