NCAA.com | March 19, 2021

2021 NCAA bracketology: March Madness predictions by Andy Katz

How to pick an NCAA tournament champion

Gonzaga will become the most recent undefeated NCAA March Madness champion since Indiana last did it in 1976, at least according to Andy Katz's 2021 NCAA bracket.

Katz has Gonzaga winning it all against fellow No. 1 seed Illinois. The other teams in his Final Four are No. 3 seed Texas and No. 2 seed Ohio State. Here's his complete bracket:

 

A Big 12 and Big Ten-heavy Elite Eight

Six of the teams that Katz projects to make the Elite Eight are from the Big 12 (Baylor, Texas and West Virginia) or Big Ten (Illinois, Iowa and Ohio State), with Gonzaga and Florida State being the other two teams slotted in to the regional finals.

In the 2019 NCAA Tournament, three conferences sent two teams to the Elite Eight – the ACC, Big Ten and SEC – with the Big 12 and WCC contributing one each. The Big 12 was the last conference to have three teams in the Elite Eight, when Kansas, Kansas State and Texas Tech made it in 2018.

Rutgers is Katz's Cinderella

The only double-digit seed that Katz projects to make the second weekend is No. 10 seed Rutgers, which will play No. 7 seed Clemson in the first round. Katz has the Scarlet Knights upsetting No. 2 seed Houston in the second round.

And here were Katz's final 2021 NCAA Tournament predictions, just hours before Selection Sunday, based on games played through Saturday, March 13.

(Tap or click here to to open the bracket in a new window.)

Here's Katz's full field of 68 seed list and his notes from his bracket:

Expect a few contingency brackets based on the Houston/Cincinnati American winner and the Colgate/Loyola-MD Patriot winner.

If Colgate wins the Patriot they would be a 14 seed, per our bracket, but if Loyola (Md) won then they would be on the 16 line.

A Cincinnati win would knock out Wichita State in the last four in.

Also, both VCU and St. Bonaventure are projected in the field, regardless of what happens in the A-10 final.

A VCU loss would put the Rams in the First Four. A VCU win would keep the Rams out of the First Four and drop Syracuse or St. Bonaventure into the First Four. Here are the seeds as we project.

1. Gonzaga (1) AQ WCC

2. Baylor (1)

3. Illinois (1) AQ BIG

4. Michigan (1)

5. Alabama (2) AQ SEC

6. Ohio State (2)

7. Iowa (2)

8. Texas (2) AQ Big 12

9. Oklahoma State (3)

10. Houston (3) AQ AAC

11. Arkansas (3)

12. West Virginia (3)

13. Kansas (4)

14. Purdue (4)

15. Florida State (4)

16. Virginia (4)

17. Texas Tech (5)

18. Villanova (5)

19. Colorado (5)

20. USC (5)

21. Oklahoma (6)

22. Oregon (6)

23. Creighton (6)

24. Tennessee (6)

25. Clemson (7)

26. Virginia Tech (7)

27. Wisconsin (7)

28. UConn (7)

29. BYU (8)

30. Missouri (8)

31. San Diego State (8) AQ MWC

32. Loyola-Chicago (8) AQ MVC

33. North Carolina (9)

34. LSU (9)

35. Georgia Tech (9) AQ ACC

36. Rutgers (9)

37. Florida (10)

38. Maryland (10)

39. Michigan State (10)

40. UCLA (10)

41. St. Bonaventure (11) AQ A10

42. Syracuse (11)

43. VCU (11)

44. Louisville (11)

45. Drake (11)

46. Oregon State (12) AQ Pac-12

47. Wichita State (12) (Cincinnati if wins AQ AAC)

48. Georgetown (12) AQ Big East

49. North Texas (12) AQ CUSA

50. Winthrop (12) AQ Big South

51. UCSB/UC Irvine (13) AQ Big West winner

52. Ohio (13) AQ MAC

53. Liberty (13) AQ ASun

54. UNCG (13) AQ SoCon

55. Morehead State (14) AQ OVC

56. Colgate (14) AQ Patriot Playing Loyola-MD Sunday)

57. Abilene Christian (14) AQ Southland

58. Eastern Washington (14) AQ Big Sky

59. Grand Canyon (15) AQ WAC

60. Iona (15) AQ MAAC

61. Cleveland State (15) AQ Horizon

62. Oral Roberts (15) AQ Summit

63. Drexel (16) AQ CAA

64. Hartford (16) AQ America East

65. Mount Saint Mary’s (16) AQ NEC

66. Appalachian State (16) AQ Sun Belt

67. Texas Southern (16) AQ SWAC

68. Norfolk State (16) AQ MEAC

First four out: Utah State, Colorado State, Memphis, Ole Miss

🚨 You can click or tap here to open a blank NCAA bracket as a .PDF in a new window. πŸš¨

Here's the schedule for this season's tournament:

GAME TV TIME (ET) SITE
National championship β€” Monday, April 5      
(1) Baylor 86, (1) Gonzaga 70 CBS 9:20 p.m. Lucas Oil Stadium Unity
Final Four β€” Saturday, April 3      
(1) Baylor 78, (2) Houston 59 CBS 5:14 p.m. Lucas Oil Stadium Unity
(1) Gonzaga 93, (11) UCLA 90 (OT)  CBS 8:34 p.m. Lucas Oil Stadium Unity
2021 NCAA TOURNAMENT RESULTS LOCATION
First Four β€” Thursday, March 18  
(16) Texas Southern 60, (16) Mount St. Mary's 52 Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(11) Drake 53, (11) Wichita State 52 Mackey Arena
(16) Norfolk State 54, (16) Appalachian State 53  Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(11) UCLA 86, (11) Michigan State 80 Mackey Arena
First Round β€” Friday, March 19  
(7) Florida 75, (10) Virginia Tech 70 (OT) Hinkle Fieldhouse
(3) Arkansas 85, (14) Colgate 68 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(1) Illinois 78, (16) Drexel 49 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(6) Texas Tech 65, (11) Utah State 53 Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(15) Oral Roberts 75, (2) Ohio State 72 (OT) Mackey Arena
(1) Baylor 79, (16) Hartford 55 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(8) Loyola Chicago 71, (9) Georgia Tech 60 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(12) Oregon State 70, (5) Tennessee 56 Bankers Life Fiieldhouse
(4) Oklahoma State 69, (13) Liberty 60 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(9) Wisconsin 85, No. 8 North Carolina 62 Mackey Arena
(2) Houston 87, (15) Cleveland State 56 Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(13) North Texas 78, (4) Purdue 69 (OT) Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (North)
(10) Rutgers 60, (7) Clemson 56 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(11) Syracuse 78, (6) San Diego State 62 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(3) West Virginia 84, (14) Morehead State 67 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(5) Villanova 73, (12) Winthrop 63 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
First Round β€” Saturday, March 20  
(5) Colorado 96, (12) Georgetown 73 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(4) Florida State 64, (13) UNC Greensboro 54 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(3) Kansas 93, (14) Eastern Washington 84 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(8) LSU 76, (9) St. Bonaventure 61 Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(1) Michigan 82, (16) Texas Southern 66 Mackey Arena
(5) Creighton 63, (12) UC Santa Barbara 62 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(2) Alabama 68, (15) Iona 55 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(6) USC 72, (11) Drake 56 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(2) Iowa 86, (15) Grand Canyon 74 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(10) Maryland 63, (7) UConn 54 Mackey Arena
(13) Ohio 62, (4) Virginia 58 Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall
(8) Oklahoma 72, (9) Missouri 68 Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (North)
(1) Gonzaga 98, (16) Norfolk State 55 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(11) UCLA 73, (6) BYU 62 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(14) Abilene Christian 53, (3) Texas 52 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(7) Oregon vs. (10) VCU β€” NO-CONTEST DUE TO COVID-19 PROTOCOLS --
Second Round β€” Sunday, March 21  
(8) Loyola Chicago 71, (1) Illinois 58 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(1) Baylor 76, (9) Wisconsin 63 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(11) Syracuse 75, (3) West Virginia 72 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(3) Arkansas 68, (6) Texas Tech 66 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(2) Houston 63, (10) Rutgers 60 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(15) Oral Roberts 81, (7) Florida 78 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(5) Villanova 84, (13) North Texas 61 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(12) Oregon State 80, (4) Oklahoma State 70 Hinkle Fieldhouse
Second Round β€” Monday, March 22  
(7) Oregon 95, (2) Iowa 80 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(1) Gonzaga 87, (8) Oklahoma 71 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(11) UCLA 67, (14) Abilene Christian 47 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(5) Creighton 72, (13) Ohio 58 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(1) Michigan 86, (8) LSU 78 Lucas Oil Stadium Unity (South)
(4) Florida State 71, (5) Colorado 53 Indiana Farmers Coliseum
(2) Alabama 96, (10) Maryland 77 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(6) USC 85, No. 3 Kansas 51 Hinkle Fieldhouse
Sweet 16 β€” Saturday, March 27  
(12) Oregon State 65, No. 8 Loyola Chicago 58 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(1) Baylor 62, (5) Villanova 51 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(3) Arkansas 72, (15) Oral Roberts 70 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(2) Houston 62, (11) Syracuse 46 Hinkle Fieldhouse
Sweet 16 β€” Sunday, March 28  
(1) Gonzaga 83, (5) Creighton 65 Hinkle Fieldhouse
(1) Michigan 76, (4) Florida State 58 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
(11) UCLA 88, (2) Alabama 78 (OT) Hinkle Fieldhouse
(6) USC 82, (7) Oregon 68 Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Elite Eight β€” Monday, March 29  
(2) Houston 67, (12) Oregon State 61 Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (North)
(1) Baylor 81, (3) Arkansas 72 Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (South)
Elite Eight β€” Tuesday, March 30
(1) Gonzaga 85, (6) USC 66 Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (North)
(11) UCLA 51, (1) Michigan 49 Lucas Oil Stadium Equality (South)