The Princeton women’s basketball team received a no. 8 seed in the NCAA Women’s Tournament this year. That means the selection committee thought them to be roughly the 32nd best team overall, and it’s a shock, given the team finished the season ranked no. 13 in the A.P. poll. The team will face off with Green Bay in College Park, Maryland on Saturday. Green Bay finished the season unranked.
The road gets much tougher in the next round, which is where the low seed really starts to make trouble for the team. If Princeton wins, they will play No. 1 seeded Maryland on the Terps’ home turf. Maryland finished fourth in the AP poll, with a 30-2 record.
Few predicted such a low seeding for the team. Many thought that they would win a top 4 seed, which would have given them a chance to play at home, in Jadwin. Charlie Creme, ESPN’s bracketologist for women’s basketball, thought they would be a no. 5 seed. He wrote on Twitter that he was “mildly surprised,” and “thought the 30-0 would have carried more weight,” but he also said that the matchup with Green Bay was among the best in the first round.
The Committee may have felt that the team did not have enough quality wins. They had not beaten any other ranked teams, although they did beat Pittsburgh in their first game of the season, which got a no. 7 seed in the tournament.
Kentucky, which finished only two spots in the AP poll above Princeton but got a no. 2 seed, was another big surprise in the seeding. The Kentucky men’s team was the only other undefeated in college basketball this season.
A win over Green Bay alone, however, would make history for the program. Harvard is the only other Ivy women’s basketball team to win a game in the tournament.
The seeding might be madness, but March is about upsets, after all.