NCAA Tournament 2014: Wichita State Gets the Bracket of Death

Wichita State Gets the Bracket of Death

3/17/14 in NCAABB   |   BlakeLovell   |   86 respect

Mar 9, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA;  Wichita State Shockers celebrate defeated the Indiana State Sycamores 83-69 to win the Missouri Valley Conference basketball tournament at Scotttrade Center.. Mandatory Credit: Scott Kane-USA TODAY SportsIf you took away all the seedings and glanced at the 2014 NCAA tournament bracket, you might mistake the Wichita State Shockers for a five-seed in the Midwest region.

But the still undefeated team from the Missouri Valley Conference is actually the top overall seed in the Midwest, which of course begs the question:

What did they do to deserve this region?

Because this region may be the strongest we've seen in years in the Big Dance. Big Ten regular season Michigan is the two. The Jabari Parker-led Duke Blue Devils are three. Louisville, ranked fifth in this week's Top 25 polls, is the four seed.

All three of those teams over the past few weeks were considered to be potential number one seeds in the tournament, but ultimately, they were all placed in the same region with the lone undefeated team in college basketball.

Needless to say, if Wichita State wants to remain undefeated, it will have to earn it. I mean really earn it.

And there's nothing wrong with that. However, choosing to seed a 29-5 Louisville team that has won 12 of their last 13 games as a four dramatically lowered the Shockers' chances of making a run to the Final Four.

Oh, and don't forget about a potential matchup with eighth-seeded Kentucky in the second round. I mean, it's not like the Wildcats were ranked by many as the top team in college basketball heading into the season. 

Wait, that's right. They were.

While the committee certainly didn't do Gregg Marshall and company any favors, it sent them a very clear message:

Prove to us that you're the best.

And isn't that what the NCAA tournament is all about? We can complain all we want about the way teams were seeded, but ultimately, it's about one team proving its greatness over a stretch of several weeks in March.

Wichita State's road to immortality may be tougher than anyone else's, but this team will be more than willing to accept the challenge. After all, it's impossible to go win 34 straight games without mental toughness.

All season long, the Shockers have had their doubters. If they are able to run the table in this extremely difficult bracket, there will be nothing left for the doubters to say.

40-0 and national champions with this bracket?

Not only will Marshall's team be considered this season's best, but perhaps one of the best in college basketball history.

What are your thoughts on the Midwest region? Let us know by commenting below! For more college basketball talk, follow FanIQ or myself on Twitter!
 
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