Cincinnati only has two regular season games remaining after beating East Carolina last week, 75-60, with Houston and SMU on the docket for this week. As we approach conference tournaments and March Madness, the bracketology predictions are picking up and the Bearcats continue to sit precariously on the edge of the NCAA Tournament in many people's eyes.
The Bearcats are largely considered a "Last Four In" team who will have to play in the tournament's opening round. USA Today has Cincinnati fighting for a second round appearance as a No. 11 seed against Michigan, while CBS Sports matches up the Bearcats with Vanderbilt in the First Four, also at No. 11.
SB Nation's own Chris Dobbertean has the Bearcats also making the Big Dance with a First Four appearance, but has them matched up with Oregon State in the First Four matchup as a No. 12 seed. Perhaps most interesting, if it were to occur, would be Joe Lunardi's bracketology for ESPN. He has Cincinnati as a No. 10 seed, matching up with Dayton in the second round of the tournament. To make things even more interesting, the winner of that game would face either No. 15 seed UAB or No. 2 seed Xavier.
How would that be for storylines?
Even if you'd like to take that a step further, Bob Huggins' No. 3 seeded West Virginia squad would be in the South Region as well. It would certainly offer the potential for some exciting tournament games, if things played out that way.
As for Bracket Matrix, which essentially compiles the different bracket projections into one format, Cincinnati now has an average seeding of 10.05. Across the board, you see a range of projections from a No. 8 seed in some brackets to completely out of the tournament on others.
This is all fun and dandy to look at and explore, but Cincinnati still has two big games to play, plus the AAC Conference Tournament before anything gets set in stone. If Cincinnati keeps winning, they should have no trouble playing their way into the Big Dance with little fanfare, but if they drop either Thursday's game to Houston or even Sunday's game to SMU, the Bearcats will need to get to work in the conference tournament to feel comfortable on Selection Sunday.
For now though, it seems, Cincinnati sits "comfortably" as a "First Four In" to many.