The madness began even before the brackets came out. Kentucky, Syracuse and North Carolina all earned top seeding for the NCAA tournament despite unexpected losses in their conference tournaments.

Michigan State earned the last No. 1 seed in the pairings announced Sunday and is the only one of the four top-billed teams to win its conference tournament.

Next up, the NCAA tournament — a 68-team free-for-all that begins with first-round games Tuesday. That's the first step en route to the Final Four, which begins March 31 in New Orleans.

Kentucky and Syracuse each enter the tournament with two losses. Both were shoo-ins for top seeds, though losses in their conference tournaments certainly make them look more vulnerable than they did only a week ago.