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NCAA Tournament Bracket Forecast: Kansas State, Baylor make big move

It’s a wonderful time to be a Big 12 men’s college basketball fan.

As February approaches and the NCAA Tournament inches closer, the Big 12 is on top of the men’s college hoops world, with a jaw-dropping six teams ranked inside the top 17 of the AP Top 25 Poll. Leading the way is Jerome Tang’s Kansas State team, which is playing better basketball than any team in the country right now.

After an impressive victory over Texas Tech this past weekend, the Wildcats have now won 11 of their last 12 games, with a much-anticipated road matchup against Iowa State set to take center stage in the college hoops world Tuesday night. 

Following their recent success, the Wildcats have moved up to a No. 1 seed in FOX Sports bracket forecaster Mike DeCourcy‘s updated NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament projections, which were released Tuesday. They are joined by Houston, Alabama and Purdue on the 1-line.

The defending national champion Kansas Jayhawks dropped to a No. 2 seed following their third straight loss. Bill Self’s team jumped out to an impressive 16-1 start, but the Jayhawks now sit at 16-4 and 5-3 in Big 12 play. Joining Kansas on the 2-line is UCLA, Tennessee and Arizona.

One of those programs responsible for Kansas’ three-game slide is Baylor. The Bears have run off five straight wins and have moved up to the 3-line. Scott Drew’s team is joined by Iowa State, Virginia and Texas as No. 3 seeds.

Marquette, Xavier, Gonzaga and TCU make up the No. 4 seeds.

When it comes to conference representation, the Big Ten leads the way with nine bids, followed by eight from the ACC. The Big 12 and SEC have six teams represented. The Big East has five teams in DeCourcy’s latest projections, while the Pac-12 has four. The Mountain West has three teams represented, while the WCC and American each have two.

Looking at teams on the bubble, DeCourcy has Wake Forest, Maryland, Kentucky, and Creighton as the last four teams in, with Penn State, Nevada, Oklahoma and Ohio State on the outside looking in.

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