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Bracketology: Tennessee Stays Projected on the Two-Line Despite Top 4 AP Ranking

Tennessee basketball
Photo via Tennessee Athletics

With just four games left on the regular season schedule, end-of-season storylines are starting to become more and more prevalent.

ESPN’s Joe Lunardi released his latest bracketology report on Tuesday with several interesting notes coming from the selection.

Tennessee is sort of in an interesting situation right now as the Vols await the results of their final four regular season games, all of which are against ranked teams from the Southeastern Conference. The Vols have the No. 4 ranking in the AP Poll and the fourth spot in the latest ESPN power rankings but are still slotted on the same two-line as they have been for the last handful of weeks.

Lunardi’s Feb. 27 Bracketology report still has Tennessee as a projected 2-seed in the upcoming tournament but has moved the Vols from the Midwest Region (Detroit) to the South Region (Dallas).

Tennessee’s first projected matchup is against 15-seed Fairfield with a potential second-round matchup against either 7-seed Colorado State or 10-seed Wake Forest.

As always, there are a few familiar opponents in Tennessee’s region, exclusively coming from a conference standpoint. The Florida Gators, one of the fastest-rising teams in college basketball over the last few weeks, comes in as the 6-seed in Tennessee’s side of the bracket. Mississippi State, a team that Tennessee lost to in the second game of the SEC slate in January, is the 8-seed in the Vols’ region.

There was a big change from an SEC perspective in the latest report, too. After boasting nine projected tournament teams over the last few weeks, the SEC now only has seven. Texas A&M dropped out after being placed as the West Region’s 11-seed last week while Ole Miss dropped out after being selected as the East Region’s 11-seed play-in game last week.

That leaves Tennessee as the highest-projected tournament team from the SEC with Alabama and Auburn slotting in behind the Vols.

Midwest Region (Detroit)

  • 3-seed Alabama

West Region (Los Angeles)

  • 5-seed Kentucky
  • 6-seed South Carolina

East Region (Boston)

  • 4-seed Auburn

South Region (Dallas)

  • 2-seed Tennessee
  • 6-seed Florida
  • 8-seed Mississippi State
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Tennessee’s final four games of the conference season will have everything to do with the Vols’ seeding in the upcoming NCAA Tournament:

Feb. 28: Tennessee vs No. 11 Auburn

Mar. 2: Tennessee at No. 14 Alabama

Mar. 6: Tennessee at No. 18 South Carolina

Mar. 9: Tennessee vs No. 16 Kentucky

Stay tuned to Rocky Top Insider for more on the Tennessee basketball season with the postseason drawing near.

For a look at Joe Lunardi’s full Feb. 27 Bracketology report for ESPN, click here.

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