Posted on: March 16, 2011 10:37 pm
As March has arrived and the NCAA tournament has arrived, we are all asking ourselves, what in the hell was the selection committee thinking? The consistent problem with this process is that it is done by humans. This becomes a real problem because we can not put our biasses aside and see things objectively. With that being said I think we should change a few things. First, we should get ride of the automatic bids. These teams bring down the level of competition in the tournament. If we are going to take 68 or 64 teams they should be the best teams in the country. Should the likes of Alabama State be in the tournament, no. Should Colorado have to sit at home and watch this team play, no. We all love the NCAA tournament because it gives us what football can not, a playoff system. Unfortunately, this process is clouded because it is not the best 68 teams in the country. Second, let the RPI determine who the best teams are. It takes the human element out of the system. If we do not like the RPI calculation than we can change it, but it would be a better system than what we have now. If we used a system like the RPI we could then measure it's effectiveness and make changes as we see the need. If you take this whole year and duplicate it next year, would UAB, VCU and USC get in? Probably not but this is where the human element is hurting the selection process. It is all objective and this always creates a bad situation. We all have our preconceived notions about conferences and or teams. A true statistical calculation would change these perceptions. More importantly it would make our perceptions meaningless which is how you would create a field that is unbiased. A great example this year is Butler. They did not beat a single good team and play in a below average conference. They got into the tournament on an automatic bid, which in their case I can live with, and got a number 8 seed. Is that number 8 seed based on this year or because they went to the final four last year? I think the answer is pretty obvious, it is because of last year and has nothing to do with this year. If we used a calculated system this would never happen. This would be like your boss at work telling you I should let you go for what you did, but I am going to hang on to you in your current position because of what you did a few years ago. I just did what I am complaining about, I said I can live with Butler, but that was based on last year and not this year. I saw them play three times at the beginning of the year, against good teams and they lost every game, but in my mind I have convinced myself that last year is justification for their current bid. This is unfair and just another reason to take the human element out of the best event in all of college sports. Let's all enjoy the tournament and I hope my Tigers can give Arizona a great game. GO TIGERS!!!!!!!!!