This is part 9 of a 32-part series previewing every conference tournament in the country. We'll detail what you need to keep track of in each tournament and the various stakes for each team.
St Mary's 16-2
Santa Clara 10-8
San Francisco 10-8
Loyola Marymount 8-10
San Diego 6-12
Friday March 3 to Tuesday March 7. They skip Sunday because lol BYU. No double byes or anything funky. Neutral site in Vegas.
1) Gonzaga vs. 8/9) Pepperdine/Pacific
4) Santa Clara vs. 5) San Francisco
3) BYU vs. 6) Loyola Marymount
2) St Mary's vs. 7/10) San Diego/Portland
I wonder if people are ignorant of Gonzaga's resume. 11 Top 100 wins, but what really matters is signature wins over N-Florida (really @Florida) and N-Arizona. Iowa St helps too. St Mary's 2x helps too. But the two high-end wins show they're competent against elite teams, and is the key to the argument for a 1 seed. I think they take the 1 seed, barring a stupid loss to anyone other than St Mary's, IMO. Now, which 1 seed may be an argument, and Oregon can still take the West regional away by running the table, perhaps. Would Gonzaga prefer to be a 2 seed out west than a 1 seed in the South?
(pet peeve: all the talking heads saying the competition for a 1 seed in the West is between Gonzaga and the Pac-12, and that UNC has the South wrapped up. NO. BOTH Gonzaga AND the Pac-12 champ can be 1 seeds. You idiots)
St Mary's seed could vary wildly. @Dayton is the best win, which is good enough to make the field, but may not help seeding that much. I can argue anywhere from a 5 to a 10 for them. They sneakily only played 2 road games and 1 neutral in the non-con, which doesn't look good for a mid major. That they won all 3 do help mask that flaw, though. Frankly, I think they got lucky with their SoS, as Stanford, Nevada, and UTA have all helped out more than you'd think. I'm having a tough time pinning down a seed for them, and I expect many people to miss their predictions on their seed.
Deeper down, BYU probably clinched a NIT bid by beating Gonzaga. San Francisco despite a top 100 RPI will likely fall short of that and will join Santa Clara and Loyola Marymount in a CBI/CIT tournament.