Potential top seeds want to avoid these Giant Killers in NCAA tourney

Michigan won six of its last eight regular-season games and will face Illinois in the Big Ten tournament on Thursday. Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports

The season-long speculation has almost come to an end, and we're just a few days away from having an actual NCAA tournament bracket in our hands. But before we get that far, we want to offer one last bracket-blind Giant Killer advisory.

In the past two weeks my colleague Peter Keating and I already have pointed out that Oklahoma State in particular is a very, very dangerous Killer-type outfit, and that teams as various as UNC Wilmington, Princeton and East Tennessee State also could pose very real threats to higher seeds.

Now, with the natural advantage of Joe Lunardi's 11th-hour bracket projections, we can look at potential Giant Killers in the context of their likely seed and even in terms of potential opponents. From this perspective, there are four more names that jump out as teams that could, like all of the potential Killers named above, win a game against a higher seed during the first weekend.