ESPN's Joe Lunardi has been kicking the Bracketology machine in high gear now that we're in the closing stages of February and about to hit Championship Week. His latest projections came out today, and they're pretty good for Gamecocks fans: the team is a seven seed (unchanged from Monday's projections) and pitted against the Atlantic 10's VCU in the Midwest region. The Gamecocks are paired with second-seeded at-large pick Miami (Fla.) and 15th-seeded Weber State, predicted to garner the Big Sky's sole bid by virtue of winning the conference tournament.
A game against VCU stands to be very favorable for the Gamecocks. The Rams, under first-year head coach Will Wade (who took over for Shaka Smart when the latter replaced current Tennessee head man Rick Barnes at Texas), are 20-8 and sitting at third in the A-10 behind Saint Joseph's and Dayton, but fell to 10-18 George Mason the other night and have little margin for error. (St. Joe's is projected to receive the A-10's auto bid as the conference champion and Dayton is favored to get an at-large bid.) At the same time, VCU is famous for shocking teams in the tournament, so we'll see.
Of course, SBN has its own resident bracketologist, Chris Dobbertean. He also had the Gamecocks as a seven seed vs. VCU in his Tuesday projections, also in the Midwest region, but paired with Miami and Big South auto-bid Winthrop instead of the Big Sky's Weber State. Dobbertean's cranking them out with regularity as well, so check his stuff out when you have a chance.