Feature Presentation - Doug McKinney's Breaking Down The Bracket


  • 11/17 | Welcome to another season of college basketball and there's no stopping now as it takes us on the wild ride from November to April. My first Bracketology of the 2016-17 season will be released in December, but in the mean time enjoy the rest of the Breaking Down the Bracket season preview.

  •   Top Early Season Tournaments
    Doug McKinney
    November 18, 2016

    One of the most exciting aspects of any year in college hoops is the early season tournaments. Some teams are magically whisked away to beautiful tropical islands; others go to Alaska (sorry The Last Frontier). Regardless, college hoops junkies are thankful for the plethora of games, allowing them an opportunity to slack off at work and come Thanksgiving week, itís an excuse to avoid annoying uncles.

    *Tournameter: 4 TV's being the best must see TV

    Tire Pros Puerto Rico Tip-Off
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 17-18, 20
    Field: Clemson, Davidson, Xavier, Missouri, Northern Iowa, Arizona State, Tulane, Oklahoma
    Worth Watching: Clemson-Davidson looks like an underrated matchup, but all eyes will be on the projected Xavier-Oklahoma championship tilt. People are sleeping on the Sooners this season, but the Musketeers are clearly the best team in this field.
    And The Winner Is: Xavier

    Gildan Charleston Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 17-18, 20
    Field: Western Michigan, Villanova, Wake Forest, UTEP, Mississippi State, UCF, Boise State, College of Charleston
    Worth Watching: Defending champs and thatís about it.
    And The Winner Is: Villanova

    2K Classic Benefitting Wounded Warrior Project
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 17-18
    Field: Pitt, SMU, Michigan, Marquette
    Worth Watching: A lot of unknowns in this field. Pitt and SMU welcome in new coaches, while Michigan and Marquette had key players get selected in the first round of the 2016 NBA draft. None of the four teams are in my preseason Top 30, but they all are capable of being NCAA tourney bubble teams.
    And The Winner Is: Michigan

    U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 18-21
    Field: Loyola (Chi), St. Joesephís, Oral Roberts, Ole Miss, Montana, NC State, Washington State, Creighton
    Worth Watching: Bottom of the bracket is much stronger than top, itís a shame/treat (depending on how you look at it) we get to see NC State and Creighton duke it out on the second day.
    And The Winner Is: Creighton

    Hall of Fame Tip-Off
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 19-20
    Field: Duke, Penn State, Cincinnati, Rhode Island
    Worth Watching: Anytime you get a chance to watch Duke in any kind of a tournament - you must tune in - but the bottom line is that Cincy-RI is as good of a game as you will see this weekend.
    And The Winner Is: Duke

    Gulf Coast Showcase
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 21-23
    Field: Vermont, Wofford, Hofstra, Bradley, Kent State, South Dakota, Houston, George Mason
    Worth Watching: Iíll copy and paste what I had written last year for this tournament: ďYeah, yeah, itís a tournament for mid-majors; but guaranteed at least one of these teams pulls off an upset during March Madness.Ē Okay I wasnít right, but, letís go back to the well.
    And The Winner Is: Houston

    Maui Jim Maui Invitational
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 21-23
    Field: Tennessee, Wisconsin, Georgetown, Oregon, Oklahoma State, Connecticut, UNC, Chaminade
    Worth Watching: Always my favorite early season tourney. All four teams in the top part of the bracket suffered a loss in the opening week; look for some intense play out of them in Hawaii. A potential Oregon-UNC final would boast two of my top seven preseason ranked teams.
    And The Winner Is: Oregon

    Legends Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 21-22
    Field: Notre Dame, Colorado, Texas, Northwestern
    Worth Watching: Texas is an NCAA tourney team, while Notre Dame could be, outside of that...not much to see here.
    And The Winner Is: Texas

    MGM Grand Main Event
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 21, 23
    Field: Saint Louis, BYU, Alabama, Valparaiso
    Worth Watching: Valpo is one of the best teams nobody knows about and boasts one of the best players (Alec Peters) nobody knows about.
    And The Winner Is: Valparaiso

    CBE Hall of Fame Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 21-22
    Field: GW, Georgia, UAB, Kansas
    Worth Watching: GW and UAB will see brighter days ahead (especially UAB who has a good in new coach Rob Eshan), but Georgia could give Kanas a scare for most of the title game.
    And The Winner Is: Kansas

    Cancun Challenge
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 22-23
    Field: Texas Tech, Auburn, Purdue, Utah State
    Worth Watching: Purdue is the cream of the crop in this field, but there are a lot of unknowns with the other three schools...which could spell trouble for the tall Boilermakers. Probably not.
    And The Winner Is: Purdue

    Battle 4 Atlantis
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 23-25
    Field: VCU, Baylor, Michigan State, St. Johnís, Wichita State, LSU, Louisville, Old Dominion
    Worth Watching: This tourney has competed with Maui as the top early season tournament, but in this fieldís case, what a difference a year makes. A year ago, this bracket would be absolutely stacked from top to finish, but a lot of these schools lost some major firepower.
    And The Winner Is: Michigan State

    GCI Great Alaska Shootout
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 23-26
    Field: Buffalo, Alaska Anchorage, Oakland, Nevada, UC Davis, Weber State, Drake, Iona
    Worth Watching: This will help you fall asleep faster than turkey. Or make you want to talk to your uncle.
    And The Winner Is: Weber State

    AdvoCare Invitational
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 24-25, 27
    Field: Indiana State, Iowa State, Stanford, Miami, Gonzaga, Quinnipiac, Seton Hall, Florida
    Worth Watching: Six teamís from last seasonís bracket made the Big Dance...if that means anything. Gonzaga is the clear favorite in this field.
    And The Winner Is: Gonzaga

    NIT Season Tip-Off
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 24-25
    Field: Temple, FSU, Illinois, West Virginia
    Worth Watching: FSU and WVU are tournament teams, but Temple and Illinois really could benefit from having a good showing here.
    And The Winner Is: West Virginia

    Directv Wooden Legacy
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 24-25, 27
    Field: Texas A&M, CSUN, New Mexico, Virginia Tech, Dayton, Nebraska, Portland, UCLA
    Worth Watching: Donít sleep on Texas A&M and Virginia Tech on the top part of the bracket, but Iím picking one of the teams on the bottom half to win this tourney. Do yourself a favor: stay up to catch the Dayton-UCLA semifinal game that tips off @ midnight next Friday night/Saturday morning (however you look at it).
    And The Winner Is: Dayton

    Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 24-25
    Field: Vanderbilt, Butler, Arizona, Santa Clara
    Worth Watching: Youíre in Las Vegas and you get to see a banged up Arizona team...enjoy.
    And The Winner Is: Arizona

    Emerald Coast Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 25-26
    Field: Virginia, Iowa, Memphis, Providence
    Worth Watching: Providence and Iowa are definitely taking a step back this year, while Memphis is middle of the pack in a so-so AAC. UVA should be taking home this title.
    And The Winner Is: Virginia

    Barclays Center Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 25-26
    Field: Kansas State, Boston College, Maryland, Richmond
    Worth Watching: Maryland and thatís about it. BC and K-State are predicted to finish near the bottom of their conferences, while Richmond looks like will be gunning for NIT.
    And The Winner Is: Maryland

    Global Sports Classic
    Bracket | Tournameter:
    Dates: November 25-26
    Field: Washington, Western Kentucky, TCU, UNLV
    Worth Watching: Markelle Fultz. And Markelle Fultz alone.
    And The Winner Is: Markelle Fultz...I mean Washington

    Top 30 Teams
    1. Duke
    2. Kentucky
    3. Kansas
    4. Villanova
    5. Oregon
    6. Xavier
    7. UNC
    8. Virginia
    9. Michigan St.
    10. Wisconsin
    11. Arizona
    12. Louisville
    13. Indiana
    14. Gonzaga
    15. UCLA
    16. Purdue
    17. Syracuse
    18. Saint Maryís
    19. West Virginia
    20. Connecticut
    21. Creighton
    22. Maryland
    23. Texas
    24. Cincinnati
    25. Dayton
    26. Rhode Island
    27. Florida State
    28. NC State
    29. California
    30. Butler

    Top 30 Guards
    1. Grayson Allen | Duke - JR
    2. Melo Trimble | Maryland - JR
    3. Markelle Fultz | Washington - FR
    4. Monte Morris | Iowa State - SR
    5. Josh Hart | Villanova - SR
    6. London Perrantes | Virginia - SR
    7. DeíAaron Fox | Kentucky - FR
    8. Lonzo Ball | UCLA - FR
    9. James Blackmon, Jr | Indiana - JR
    10. Jack Gibbs | Davidson - SR
    11. Edmond Sumner | Xavier - SO
    12. Malik Monk | Kentucky - FR
    13. Jawun Evans | Oklahoma St - SO
    14. Devonte Graham | Kansas - JR
    15. Nigel Williams-Goss | Gonzaga - JR
    16. Joel Berry II | UNC - JR
    17. Frank Mason III | Kansas - SR
    18. Tyler Dorsey | Oregon - SO
    19. Dennis Smith Jr | NC State - FR
    20. Elijah Brown | New Mexixo - JR
    21. Jordan Woodard | Oklahoma - SR
    22. Emmett Naar | St. Mary's - JR
    23. Bryant Crawford | Wake Forest - SO
    24. Charles Cooke | Dayton - SR
    25. Maurice Watson Jr | Creighton - SR
    26. Bryce Alford | UCLA - SR
    27. Eron Harirs | Michigan State - SR
    28. Xavier Rathan-Mayes | FSU - JR
    29. Omar Prewitt | William & Mary - JR
    30. Jaylen Adams | St. Bonaventure's - JR

    Top 30 Wings
    Coming soon

    Top 30 Bigs
    Coming soon

    The next update of Breaking Down The Bracket will be come on Monday, November 21
    Home | To contact Doug McKinney for interviews/inquiries: e-mail @ dmckinney@featurepresentationonline.com | phone 240-470-0601