Shall We Dance? NCAA Men's Basketball Selection Sunday Open Thread

"This is what I'm going to do to the selection committee if we're not in the tournament!"

Here. We. Go.

The Cal men's basketball team finished its regular season with a thud on Friday night, falling to Colorado 70-59 in the Pac-12 tournament semifinals. Now it is time for the waiting to see if the Bears' season (24-9 overall, 13-5 Pac-12) is deemed good enough to get into the 68-team NCAA tournament field. You can watch the show selection unfold live, as usual, on CBS.

NCAA Tournament Selection Show

Sunday, March 11, 2012

3:00 PM PT, CBS

How good shape are we in? Let's see what some of the "experts" think--

Joe Lunardi thinks Cal is the Pac-12's only at-large entry and predicts Cal as an 11 seed

Jerry Palm has Cal in the field. Barely.

Shawn Siegel at collegehoops.net has Cal in the field as a 10 seed

Check out The Bracket Project for a compilation of different projections from different sources. The consensus is that Cal is in.

Cal is 38th in the RPI (down 2 spots after the loss to Colorado)

Pomeroy's college basketball ratings has Cal ranked 28th

There is added intrigue for the Pac-12, as it is unclear if regular season champion Washington will make the field of 68. If Washington misses, the Huskies will become the first regular season champion from a power conference NOT to make the NCAA tournament. Needless to say, that would be an ignominious distinction for the Pac-12. Not the type of March Madness that the league wants to be a part of.

Cal's loss on Friday night certainly did not do any favors for the Huskies:

With Cal falling in the Pac-12 tournament, one of Arizona or Colorado [ed. note: Colorado defeated Arizona 53-51 on Saturday] will win the conference, effectively stealing a bid from a bubble team. The unfortunate squad was fellow Pac-12 school Washington. This is not because the committee will actively cap the Pac-12's bids at two, but because the Huskies RPI fell to 68th and they didn't beat a Top 100 RPI team in non-conference play.

More information after the jump. Remember, if you want to join our Tourney Pick Em, click here! GO BEARS!

Since the NCAA tournament expanded to 64 or more teams and instituted the seeding system we are familiar with today, Cal has been in the tournament 11 times. Here is the skinny on the Bears' seeding history and tournament performance.

1990

(9 seed in East Region, sent to Hartford, CT)

Beat (8) Indiana in 1st round; lost to (1) Connecticut in 2nd round

1993

(6 seed in Midwest Region, sent to Chicago, IL)

Beat (11) LSU in 1st round; beat (3) Duke in 2nd round

Lost to (2) Kansas in Sweet 16 in St. Louis, MO. Kansas made the Final Four, losing to eventual national champion North Carolina.

1994

(5 seed in West Region, sent to Ogden, UT)

Lost to (12) Wisconsin-Green Bay in 1st round

1996

(12 seed in Midwest Region, sent to Dallas, TX)

Lost to (5) Iowa State in 1st round

1997

(5 seed in East Region, sent to Winston-Salem, NC)

Beat (12) Princeton in 1st round; beat (4) Villanova in 2nd round

Lost to (1) North Carolina in Sweet 16 in Syracuse, NY. North Carolina made the Final Four, losing to eventual national champion Arizona.

2001

(8 seed in South Region, sent to Memphis, TN)

Lost to (9) Fresno State in 1st round

2002

(6 seed in South Region, sent to Pittsburgh, PA)

Beat (11) Pennsylvania in 1st round; lost to (3) Pittsburgh in 2nd round

2003

(8 seed in East Region, sent to Oklahoma City, OK)

Beat (9) N.C. State in 1st round; lost to (1) Oklahoma in 2nd round

2006

(7 seed in Atlanta Region; sent to Dallas, TX)

Lost to (10) N.C. State in 1st round

2009

(7 seed in West Region; sent to Kansas City, MO)

Lost to (10) Maryland in 1st round

2010

(8 seed in South Region; sent to Jacksonville, FL)

Beat (9) Louisville in 1st round; lost to (1) Duke in 2nd round. Duke went on to win the national championship.

Sources: My memory and, for what I couldn't remember on seeding numbers, the 2011-12 Cal Basketball Record Book. I also needed the record book for the site of Cal's 2006 first-round game because my memory failed me on that one, even though it was only six years ago. WTF.

(Sidebar: We've had some nice draws, haven't we? Cal has had to play UConn in Hartford, Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, and Oklahoma in Oklahoma City. Must be karma for Pete Newell's team getting to play the 1960 Final Four in San Francisco.)

Will Cal make its 12th appearance in the Big Dance since 1990? Agonize and talk about it here. This is your official tournament selection show open thread.

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