There’s a first time for everything and it’s time for an in-season NCAA Tournament bracket show. Taking a page from the College Football Playoff in-season ranking shows, NCAA Tournament partners CBS and Turner Sports will produce a show that looks at the brackets and sets the tournament’s top 16 seeds. The show will premiere on Saturday, February 21 at 12:30 p.m. ET.
The show will unveil the NCAA Selection Committee’s top four seeds in each region as they stand on February 11. And the CBS NCAA Tournament studio crew of Greg Gumbel, Clark Kellogg and Seth Davis will talk about the selections and seedlings with Committee Chairman Mark Hollis.
“We are excited about giving the fans a glimpse to what the men’s basketball committee is thinking at this point of the season, and creating a buzz as we look towards Selection Sunday,” said Mark Hollis, the Director of Athletics at Michigan State University and chair of this year’s committee. “It’s important to recognize after this list has been released, there is still a significant portion of the regular season to be played and every league must stage its conference tournament. There’s potential for quite a bit of movement until we do it for real March 12, but this early peek will give everyone insight as to where the committee stands as we hit the stretch run of the regular season.”
The fact that CBS/Turner is going the route of the College Football Playoff’s in-season rankings on ESPN shows that the NCAA is hoping to get some buzz a month before the tournament begins.
Of course, things will change when the actual seedings are released in March, but this will provide some fodder for bracketologists across the country. It makes for some interesting discussion for talk shows and puts college basketball in the forefront. If the show works, there could be additional in-season bracket shows down the road.