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Brady Vernon | | April 21, 2023

The 2023 softball field of 64, predicted by D1Softball

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Our projections take in what we know through the data the NCAA selection committee leans on in filling out the real 64-team bracket.

First, the basic math. The field is made up of 32 automatic qualifiers. Of those, 30 of the 32 are awarded to the team that wins the conference tournament with the additions of the Mountain West and Pac-12 tournaments, not the regular season title as only the Big West and WCC determine their automatic bids that way. Typically we project those cases by taking the team that currently has the strongest RPI.

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That is the case with most of these spots. There are three exceptions to that rule in this projection. Tennessee and Prairie View A&M received the auto bids in the SEC and SWAC due to the difference between the top RPI team in those conferences (LSU and Florida A&M) being negligible, and those two teams have played much better. Northern Iowa has the best conference record in the Missouri Valley and just swept the highest RPI team (Southern Illinois) quite comfortably.

The remainder of the field is comprised of 32 at-large bids. The SEC leads with 11 bids. Behind the SEC is the Pac-12 with eight, the Big Ten has seven, ACC with six, and the Big 12 has four. The lone non-Power Five conference with an at-large bid is the AAC as UCF gets a spot.

Other potential hosts: Oregon, Baylor, Louisiana

Last four in: Arizona State, Arizona, Virginia, Wisconsin

First four out: Mississippi State, Louisville, Maryland, Missouri

Note: This data comes from the Monday, April 17 RPI update

D1Softball Projected Field of 64: April 19
1. Oklahoma* (1) 1. Clemson (16)
4. Robert Morris* 4. UConn*
2. Nebraska 2. South Carolina
3. Arizona 3. UNC Greensboro*
1. UCLA* (2) 1. Florida (15)
4. GCU* 4. Boston*
2. Michigan 2. Oregon
3. Cal State Fullerton* 3. UCF
1. Oklahoma State (3) 1. Arkansas (14)
4. Long Island* 4. SEMO*
2. Wichita State* 2. Baylor
3. Wisconsin 3. South Dakota State*
1. Florida State* (4) 1. Texas (13)
4. Princeton* 4. Prairie View A&M*
2. Auburn 2. Texas A&M
3. Charlotte* 3. Arizona State
1. Stanford (5) 1. Washington (12)
4. Sacramento State* 4. Delaware*
2. Minnesota 2. Ole Miss
3. LMU* 3. Boise State*
1. Tennessee* (6) 1. Georgia (11)
4. Dayton* 4. Canisius*
2. Virginia Tech 2. Cal
3. Indiana 3. Virginia
1. LSU (7) 1. Alabama (10)
4. Binghamton* 4. Ohio*
2. Louisiana* 2. Central Arkansas*
3. McNeese* 3. Ohio State
1. Northwestern* (8) 1. Duke (9)
4. UNI* 4. Morgan State*
2. Kentucky 2. Utah
3. Notre Dame 3. Campbell*

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Division I
Softball Championship
June 1-9, 2023
USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium | Oklahoma City, OK

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