Where Will Alabama and Auburn Be Seeded in NCAAs?

Where Will Alabama and Auburn Be Seeded in NCAAs?
Fact Checked by Jim Tomlin

Alabama’s two SEC programs have been among the strongest teams in NCAA men’s basketball this year. Coach Nate Oats has led the Crimson Tide to a 21-10 regular season and Bruce Pearl has the Auburn Tigers at 24-7 entering this week’s SEC Tournament in Nashville.

Going into Thursday, Oats and the Crimson Tide are projected to be a fourth seed in next week’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament by both ESPN bracket guru Joe Lunardi and Jerry Palm of CBS Sports. The Tigers are also a No. 4 seed on Lunardi’s bracket and a No. 5 in Palm’s latest mock field.

Either way, the Crimson Tide and Tigers tip off their respective March Madness runs Friday inside Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Alabama is the No. 3 seed in the SEC tournament and plays either sixth seed Florida or No. 11 Georgia on Friday at 9:30 p.m. Eastern (SEC Network). Auburn, the league’s No. 4 seed, faces either fifth seed South Carolina or No. 12 Arkansas in the quarterfinals of the 14-team field at 3:30 Eastern on Friday.

With Selection Sunday three days away, BetAlabama.com – where we cover efforts to legalize Alabama sportsbooks as well as big spots topics – came up with some projections about where Alabama and Auburn will be seeded in the 2024 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Alabama Potential Seeding Scenarios

  • No. 3 seed: +500 (16.7%)
  • No. 4 Seed: -150 (60%)
  • No. 5 Seed: +400 (20%)
  • No. 6 Seed or worse: +2950 (3.3%)

The Crimson Tide have a solid shot at a top-four seed for the third time in their past four trips to the Big Dance in 2024. Lunardi and Palm both projecting Alabama as a fourth seed in the Big Dance, thanks in large part to Bama’s 12th spot on Thursday’s KenPom.com rankings.

Alabama made the field as a No. 1 seed in 2023, reaching the Sweet 16 before losing to fifth seed San Diego State. The Crimson Tide’s 2021 tourney, as a No. 2 seed, saw them fall in the Sweet 16 to No. 11 seed UCLA.

The Crimson Tide haven’t reached the Elite Eight since 2004, when they beat Southern Illinois, Stanford and Syracuse as an eighth seed before falling to Connecticut, 87-71, in the Elite Eight.

This year, Lunardi projects Alabama to face 13th-seeded UC Irvine in the first round, setting up a potential second-round rematch against the Aztecs, who are seeded fifth in the South regional in his mock bracket.

Palm has Alabama playing McNeese in the first round before potentially squaring off against either fifth-seeded Texas Tech or No. 12 Grand Canyon in the second round of the East region. There is no legal wagering on March Madness in the state without Alabama sports betting apps.

Auburn’s Potential Seeding Scenarios

  • No. 4 Seed: +150 (40%)
  • No. 5 Seed: +150 (40%)
  • No. 6 Seed or lower: +400 (20%)

Pearl’s Tigers enter their SEC Tournament opener on Friday coming off of three straight victories to close out the regular season. Auburn defeated Mississippi State (78-63), Missouri (101-74) and Georgia (92-78) to finish the year 24-7 overall and 13-5 in SEC play. The Tigers and Tide were even with Kentucky in SEC play, all behind Tennessee (14-4) for first in the SEC.

Auburn will look to be a fourth seed or higher for the third time in Pearl’s 10-year run on the Plains. The Tigers got knocked out in the second round of the Big Dance in three of his previous four runs to the tourney, with their Final Four loss to Virginia in 2019 being the outlier.

Pearl and the Tigers are ranked fourth nationally on KenPom.com going into Thursday, which should buoy their seeding in next week’s NCAA Tournament. A win over either the Gamecocks or Razorbacks on Friday would help bolster their seeding and wining the SEC tournament carries the potential for Auburn to move up by at least one seeding line.

Lunardi’s ESPN projections have Auburn facing College of Charleston in the first round of the Midwest region in Spokane, Washington. That bracket forecasts a potential second-round clash with either fifth seed Nevada or No. 12 Richmond. Palm has the Tigers as a fifth seed facing 12th seed USF in the Midwest region, with a possible second-round clash against either No. 4 Kansas or 13th seed Vermont.

In neighboring Louisiana, BetMGM Sportsbook lists Auburn (+2000) and Alabama (+3500) near the top of the operator’s championship odds board as of Thursday afternoon. The Tigers were tied with Kentucky for seventh nationally; the Crimson Tide had the same odds as Baylor, both tied for 15th on the board.



Christopher Boan

Christopher Boan has been covering sports and sports betting for more than seven years, including stops at ArizonaSports.com, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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