A preseason projection of the NCAA field

Updated: November 10, 2005, 9:42 PM ET
By Charlie Creme | Special to ESPN.com

Who will be in when Selection Monday rolls around in March? It's too early to tell. But come four months from now, here's what the NCAA Tournament field might look like:

CREME'S CROP
1. Tennessee One year late is still in plenty of time for the great Lady Vols recruiting class.
2. Duke What will coach Gail Goestenkors do with all that depth?
3. Ohio State If Caity Matter is replaceable, the Buckeyes are a Final Four favorite.
4. Rutgers Cappie Pondexter gets the ink, but Matee Ajavon and Essence Carson are the keys.
5. Baylor How will the Lady Bears deal with being the hunted without three starters from the title team?
6. LSU The backcourt might not be experienced enough to help Seimone Augustus get to another Final Four.
7. Georgia Injuries have taken a toll, but other than Rebecca Rowsey, Andy Landers has his key weapons.
8. Michigan State The Spartans probably will take a baby step back with some leadership gone.
9. North Carolina Junior point guard Ivory Latta might be the most entertaining player in the country.
10. Connecticut The Huskies' talent is immense, but point guard is still a question mark.
11. Texas Tech Erin Grant gets her teammates the ball as well as anyone in America.
12. Texas How much consistent help the youngsters can give Tiffany Jackson determines the Longhorns' fate.
13. Maryland It could be a breakthrough season in College Park.
14. Stanford Cardinal relies heavily on inside-outside duo of Brooke Smith and Candice Wiggins.
15. Vanderbilt Dee Davis will anchor another high-scoring Commodores club.
16. NC State The top five scorers are back from a team that earned a No. 5 seed in 2005.
17. Arizona State If momentum from last season's Sweet 16 carries over, the Sun Devils are a team to watch.
18. Purdue Katie Gearlds and Erin Lawless are solid; the newcomers determine if the Boilers challenge OSU and Mich. St.
19. Notre Dame Megan Duffy is outstanding, but who replaces the offense of Jacqueline Batteast and Teresa Borton?
20. UCLA If Noelle Quinn, Nikki Blue and Lisa Willis all stay healthy, the Bruins could challenge Stanford.
21. Utah Utes should distance themselves from the rest of the Mountain West.
22. DePaul It's good to have Khara Smith during the transition into the Big East.
23. Oklahoma If the Paris sisters are as good as advertised, the Sooners could surprise.
24. Southern California How does Mark Trakh's program function now that there are expectations?
25. Minnesota No Lindsay Whalen. No Janel McCarville. Depth and balance will be the stars this season.
26. Louisville Coach Tom Collen will need all of his depth with fewer nights off in the Big East.
27. Temple Candice Dupree is another under-publicized All-American candidate.
28. Mississippi Armintie Price averaged a double-double and was the SEC Defensive Player of the Year.
29. Louisiana Tech Tasha Williams (formerly Crain) has a new name, but the same outstanding game.
30. Old Dominion No one dominates its conference like the Lady Monarchs, who have 14 straight CAA championships.
31. Western Kentucky Tiffany Porter-Talbert looks to build on last season's Sun Belt Player of the Year award.
32. Xavier A-10 leading scorer Tara Boothe is one of four starters back from a 22-win team.
33. Boston College The loss of Jess Deveny is more of a concern than the shift to the ACC.
34. Rice The move to Conference USA shouldn't impede the Owls' momentum.
35. George Washington Jessica Simmonds is one of the East's most versatile players.
36. New Mexico The Lobos are looking for their sixth straight 20-win season.
37. Virginia The Cavs have plenty to replace, but coach Debbie Ryan always seems to find herself in the postseason.
38. Oregon The Ducks will rely more on the backcourt in their attempt to return to the tournament.
39. Villanova With six seniors, the experience alone should get the Wildcats to the postseason.
40. Richmond The Spiders made their first NCAA Tournament in 2005 -- and have four starters back.
41. Florida State The Seminoles will miss Roneeka Hodges, but have enough to get back to the NCAAs.
42. Nebraska The 'Huskers will start two seniors and three juniors, including 19 points-per-game scorer Kiera Hardy.
43. Iowa Will 23 wins be enough this season?
44. Fresno State After last year's WNIT berth, the Bulldogs are fighting for their first NCAA invite.
45. West Virginia If the Mountaineers are going to take that next step, this would seem to be the year.
46. Chattanooga It's six years and counting for the Lady Mocs atop the Southern Conference.
47. Indiana State WNIT's second round and all five starters back from a 23-win team give the Sycamores plenty of mo'.
48. Wisconsin-
Green Bay
The Phoenix have won or shared the last seven Horizon League titles
49. Hartford The Hawks are a heavy favorite to repeat as America East champ -- and play tourney at home again.
50. Northern Arizona The Lumberjacks will battle perennial Big Sky contender Montana all season.
51. UC Santa Barbara Jenna Green replaces Kristen Mann as go-to scorer; Gauchos looking for their 11th straight Big West title.
52. Liberty Last season's eighth straight Big South title culminated with a Sweet 16 appearance.
53. Loyola Marymount The Ziemann sisters will try to help the Lions hold off Gonzaga and Santa Clara in the WCC.
54. Bowling Green All five Falcon starters are back from a 23-win team.
55. Tennessee Tech Twenty-year head coach Bill Worrell will look to Emily Christian to lead the Golden Eaglettes.
56. Western Illinois Westerwinds have won the last three Mid-Con regular-season titles, but have no NCAA berths in that time.
57. Marist Senior Fifi Camara will lead the way as the Red Foxes look to improve on school-record 22 wins in 2004-05.
58. Texas-
Arlington
From zero NCAA Tournament appearances to a second straight?
59. Dartmouth The Big Green return four double-digit scorers off last year's Ivy championship team.
60. Holy Cross The Crusaders' Patriot League dominance continues.
61. Belmont The Bruins are the choice in the new-look and competitive Atlantic Sun.
62. Coppin State Reigning MEAC Player of the Year Sherrie Tucker leads the way.
63. Robert Morris Two seasons ago, the Colonials were 2-24. Now they're poised to be NEC champs.
64. Southern The Jaguars are the overwhelming favorite to get the SWAC's annual No. 16 seed.

Charlie Creme has been projecting the women's NCAA Tournament bracket for ESPN.com for three seasons. He can be reached at cwcreme@hotmail.com.

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Women's College Basketball
Charlie Creme projects the women's NCAA Tournament bracket for ESPN.com.

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