After finishing the regular season and conference tournament at 27-5, and winning the SEC regular season championship outright, Auburn has discovered its destination for the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.
The Tigers will be the 2-seed in the Midwest Region, opening the Tournament against Jacksonville State on Friday, coming in behind Kansas which earned the top seed in the quadrant. It will be Auburn’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament since the fateful Final Four run of 2019, since COVID and the preemptive postseason self-ban ruined the last two seasons’ championship hopes.
With the entire bracket available here, you can see the complete tournament picture. Other SEC teams to make the Big Dance include fellow 2-seeds Tennessee and Kentucky, who were co-runners up for the regular season title, but the Vols won the SEC Tournament today by beating Texas A&M in Tampa. The Aggies somehow didn’t do enough to get in, despite winning three games and reaching the championship game in Tampa. Here’s the total rundown for the league:
SEC TEAMS IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT
Auburn (27-5) - SEC Regular Season Champions (2-seed, Midwest Region)
Tennessee (26-7) - SEC Tournament Champions (3-seed, South Region)
Kentucky (26-7) (2-seed, East Region)
Arkansas (25-8) (4-seed, West Region)
Alabama (19-13) (6-seed, West Region)
LSU (22-11) (6-seed, Midwest Region)
As for the teams standing in Auburn’s immediate path, here’s what the Tigers have to get through if they want to make it two Final Four appearances in their last two Tournaments.
15-SEED - Jacksonville State (21-10 overall, A-Sun champs)
ROUND OF 32
7-SEED - USC (26-7 overall)
10-SEED - Miami (FL) (23-10 overall)
3-SEED - Wisconsin (24-7 overall)
6-SEED - LSU (22-11 overall)
11-SEED - Iowa State (20-12 overall)
14-SEED - Colgate (23-11 overall)
1-SEED - Kansas (28-6 overall, Big 12 Champs)
4-SEED - Providence (25-5 overall)
5-SEED - Iowa (26-9 overall, Big 10 Tournament Champs)
8-SEED - San Diego State (23-8 overall)
9-SEED - Creighton (22-11 overall)
12-SEED - Richmond (23-12 overall)
13-SEED - South Dakota State (30-4 overall)
16-SEED - Texas Southern/Texas A&M-CC (First Four game)
As for the opening round against Jacksonville State, they will have had a two week layoff after winning the A-Sun tournament last Saturday. They finished 21-10 overall, and we’ll have more information on them and their roster coming up this week.