Coyne's MCLA Division I Projected Bracket
|After paying back BYU in the finals of the RMLC
tournament, it's tough to picture Colorado State being anywhere but
the No. 2 seed heading into the MCLA tournament in
© Cecil Copeland
I've got the No. 1 seed locked in, so that's a start.
Yes, it's almost time for the fourth annual Michigan Invitational, and that means it's time for me to project the tournament field roughly two hours before the MCLA selection committee gives us the real deal.
This is the third year of the committee format for the MCLA, and because of the callowness of the group, it's still difficult to nail down exactly what criterion takes precedent over another. But we're getting closer. Thanks to Colorado admission last year, we know that highly-ranked wins are the equivalent of at-large gold bullion, and a strong schedule to go along with it – regardless of whether the team actually wins any of them – makes the committee weak in the knees.
As such, the six at-large selections will be Michigan State, Arizona State, Colorado, Boston College and UC Santa Barbara.
Where they fit in the whole 16-seed dynamic is where it gets a little trickier. I had to tweak a couple of seeds to avoid inter-conference match-ups – something that MCLA committee chair Ken Lovic told me they would try to do as long as it didn't hurt any of the teams involved.
After much thought and deliberation, this is what I've come up with for the eight first round games that will occur on Tuesday, May 17:
No. 16 Lindenwood (13-3) vs. No. 1 Michigan (16-0)
No. 15 Minnesota-Duluth (7-7) vs. No. 2 Colorado State (13-2)
No. 14 Buffalo (11-3) vs. No. 3 BYU (16-3)
No. 13 Florida State (18-1) vs. No. 4 Chapman (13-3)
No. 12 UC Santa Barbara (10-6) vs. 5. Michigan State (12-5)
No. 11 Texas (13-0) vs. No. 6 Arizona State (11-4)
No. 10 Cal Poly (14-5) vs. No. 7 Colorado (11-5)
No. 9 Oregon (11-6) vs. No. 8 Boston College (11-4)
Again, the official announcement will come out around 10:30 p.m. EDT, according to Lovic, so check back to LaxMagazine.com for the announcement, as well as a bracket breakdown.