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Bracketology update: ESPN has three Mountain West teams in the field

The Mountain West is having a down year compared to 2013, but the league is still projected have three teams projected to make the NCAA Tournament.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

The Mountain West basketball season is taking a step back from last season's performance, but that is expected since the league earned a record-high five NCAA Tournament berths. Conference play began on New Year's Day so there is still plenty of time for teams to make their move, but the league will not come close to getting five teams to the NCAA Tournament, and four could be a stretch.

Websites are coming out with its New Year's Day updated NCAA Tournament projects, and ESPN's Joe Lunardi is one of the more generous websites out there as he has three Mountain West team in his bracket.

Boise State is one of the last four teams in -- just like last year -- and are an 11 seed and would face off against Tennessee on the opening weekend. New Mexico and San Diego State are the other teams in the field; the Lobos are an eight seed going up against St. Mary's and the Aztecs are a six seed and scheduled to go against Toledo.

Seeing three teams is giving the league the benefit of the doubt due to the Mountain West's recent success of getting teams to the NCAA Tournament over the last few years.

One team that could appear on this list is UNLV who after a slow start to the season have won eight of their last nine and the only loss is against No. 1 Arizona; so the Rebels could play their way to a bid.