Lunardi: Owls out, but 'Cats, Explorers in

Temple's Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson looks to shoot as Villanova's James Bell (32) and Maurice Sutton, right, defend in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/H. Rumph Jr)

Even after Saturday's quality road win at Massachusetts, Temple still wouldn’t compete in the NCAA tournament if the field was picked Tuesday, according to ESPN college basketball analyst Joe Lunardi.

Lunardi, known as Joey Brackets, kept the Owls (17-8) among the first four teams out of the tourney in his updated Bracketology blog post. He dropped Temple out following Thursday’s setback to lowly Duquesne at the Liacouras Center.

However, he has La Salle and Villanova in the field of 68 teams.

Lunardi projects the Explorers (18-6) will be the No. 10 seed in the West region. La Salle would face No. 7 seed UNLV in a second-round game in Salt Lake City. The St. Joseph’s graduate, who does Hawks radio broadcasts, believes the Wildcats (17-10) would be one of the last four teams into the tourney.  As a result, he has ‘Nova facing California in a first-round matchup in Dayton, Ohio to determine the East region’s No. 12 seed. The winner of that game would advance to a second-round matchup against fifth-seeded Colorado State in San Jose, Calif.

In addition to two City 6 teams, Lunardi projects four Atlantic Ten teams will make the tourney.

Butler is projected as the Midwest region’s No. 5 seed. Virginia Commonwealth is the No. 7 seed in the East, while St. Louis is ninth in the West.

Click here to see Lunardi’s updated blog post.