NCAA Tournament bracketology: Syracuse inches closer to March Madness bid as Duke’s season likely over

Editor's note: This post has been updated to reflect the news that Duke has pulled out of the ACC tournament after a positive COVID-19 test. 

Syracuse inched closer toward inclusion in the field of 68 for the NCAA Tournament following its ACC Tournament victory on Wednesday. 

The Orange (16-8, 9-7) have now won three in a row after dismantling North Carolina State in the second round. That win — coupled with Xavier's loss to Butler in the Big East Tournament — moved 'Cuse up to the first team out of the field in the latest bracketology. Big East foe St. John's took Xavier's spot in the tournament for now. 

Duke (13-11, 9-9), meanwhile, beat Louisville for its second consecutive win in the ACC tournament and had played itself back into contention as one of the "next four out." But news broke Thursday that the Blue Devils had a positive COVID-19 test and therefore has pulled out of the ACC tournament. Duke won't play in its quarterfinal matchup against Florida State.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski's group needed a Quadrant 1 win over Florida State to have a shot at going dancing. This means there's no room for the Blue Devils to improve their credentials to reach the NCAA Tournament. With so many bubble teams ahead of Duke, there's not a realistic scenario in which it could still hear its name called on Selection Sunday. 

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