Its that timeof the year with Madness in March and now that selection Sunday is over we can look forward to the Big Dance and analyse the past history of the top teams.

The NCAA Tournament committee has spoken and the Field of 68 is set. An examination of the top four seeds in each region shows that many of these 16 schools have not fared very well ATS in the Big Dance over the past five years. Eleven of the 16 are below 50% ATS in this span, including eight that are 40% or below. Of the five that are over-.500, three are 67% or better. Here is the complete list:Top 4 Seeds in 2011 NCAA Tournament

Kenny BoyntonATS Records, Past 5 Seasons
Seed Region Team ATS, Pct.
2 SE Florida 10-3, 77%
2 E North Carolina 12-5, 71%
4 E Kentucky 6-3, 67%
3 E Syracuse 4-3, 57%
1 SW Kansas 9-7, 56%
4 SW Louisville 5-6, 45%
3 W Connecticut 4-5, 44%
1 W Duke 6-8, 43%
3 SW Purdue 4-6, 40%
1 E Ohio State 4-7, 36%
4 SE Wisconsin 3-6, 33%
1 SE Pittsburgh 4-9, 31%
4 W Texas 4-9, 31%
2 SW Notre Dame 1-3, 25%
3 SE BYU 1-3, 25%
2 W San Diego State 0-1, 0%

The East region is stacked with three of the top four ATS teams in this study. The biggest discrepancy exists in the Southeast region, where Florida, who tops this list, is seeded with three teams that are 33% or worse. Florida’s strong ATS performance comes from its back-to-back title runs in 2006 and 2007 when the Gators went 10-2 ATS. Among this year’s top four seeds, the Gators also have the best SU numbers in the last five tournaments, although they’ve only participated in three of them. Here is how they stack up:

Syracuse OrangeSU Records, Past 5 Seasons
Seed Region Team SU, Pct.
2 SE Florida 12-1 92%
2 E North Carolina 14-3 82%
1 SW Kansas 12-4 75%
1 W Duke 11-4 73%
3 W Connecticut 7-3 70%
1 E Ohio State 8-4 67%
4 SW Louisville 7-4 64%
1 SE Pittsburgh 8-5 62%
4 W Texas 8-5 62%
3 SW Purdue 6-4 60%
3 E Syracuse 4-3 57%
4 E Kentucky 5-4 56%
4 SE Wisconsin 5-5 50%
2 SW Notre Dame 1-3 25%
3 SE BYU 1-4 20%
2 W San Diego State 0-2 0%

The top four teams on this list account for the five championships in this span. A look at the last five tournaments shows that the teams that win the title are not only winning games, but they are crushing it ATS:

2010 - Duke: 5-1
2009 - North Carolina: 6-0
2008 - Kansas: 5-1
2007 - Florida: 4-2
2006 - Florida: 6-0
Combined: 26-4 (87%)

We also took a look at three regular NCAA participants from outside of the power conferences who have bodies of work that show some interesting patterns. As Gonzaga has risen from an upstart mid-major from the Northwest into a legitimate national program that has been consistently ranked in the Top 25, it has been held to more difficult expectations. In the past five tournaments, the ‘Zags are just 3-7 ATS (30%) while going an even 5-5 SU.

On the flip side, Gonzaga’s Catholic counterpart in Ohio -- Xavier -- has gone 10-1 ATS (91%) and 8-5 SU (62%) in the NCAAs over the past five years. Butler, on the strength of its 5-1 run last year, both ATS and SU, is 9-3 ATS (75%) and 8-4 SU (67%) while appearing in the last four tourneys.