Blog Entry

Missouri Valley Turned Upside Down!

Posted on: January 16, 2008 3:42 pm
Edited on: February 5, 2008 12:43 pm

What a crazy year it has been for the Missouri Valley Conference and with Conference play in full swing it's only going to get crazier. The favorite to win the MVC, Southern Illinois Salukis are 8-9 (3-3) and are tied for 5th in the Conference. Two teams that were picked to finish in the bottom of the MVC are at the top right now the Drake Bulldogs 14-1 (5-0) are tied for first with the Illinois State Redbirds 13-3 (5-0).

It is good that the Missouri Valley is also getting more national attention with some of their games appearing on ESPN2. But it is looking like the MVC will be lucky to get 2 bids for the NCAA Tournament. With no big Non-conference wins for the conference. Southern Illinois tried with a very tough schedule ranked 4th in the Nation. They have played both USC and Indiana along with Butler. Their most notable win is against St. Mary's. But I believe the Valley could get 2 teams in the NCAA tournament. My picks right now are Drake and Creighton getting into the Tournament.

Here are the RPI rankings of the teams in the Valley.

Rank    Team                    Record           SOS          

#18       Drake                    12-1               122          

#38       Creighton             12-3               107         

#39       Illinois State         12-3              115

#61       Southern Illinois  8-9                4

#97       Indiana State        8-7                83

#102    Missouri State       9-8                31 

#130    Bradley                   8-9                 65

#144    Wichita State         8-8                 71

#159    Northern Iowa       9-7                 178

#239    Evansville               4-11              105


Since: Nov 16, 2006
Posted on: January 17, 2008 10:19 am

Missouri Valley Turned Upside Down!

The problem with SOS is, if you don't win those games, then it really doesn't matter. SIU has no chance for an at large. It was gone when we lost to SLU. I'm predicting Drakes season to collapse. I just don't think they have it. Plus, everyone has road game. Drake still has to come to SIU, right along with ISU. Everyone is going to get their chance.

Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2008 6:17 pm

Missouri Valley Turned Upside Down!

dogfight, you make a good point about SIU beating Mississipi St. and Western Kentucky. Western Kentucky is a very good team who will most likely win the Sun Belt Conference. I also think your right about the Valley turning back around especially when the leading scorer for Drake and the Conference overall Josh Young is out indefinetly.

turbozo- I don't know how many losses it will take before SIU is out for an at large, I personally think they will have to win the Valley Tournament to get in. Which they are capable of doing. But for them to be on the bubble I think they have to win 20 or more games. Even with their impressive SOS. They have 12 games left so it is highly unlikely they will win 20 games this year, and typically that is what it takes for a Valley team to make the tourney.

Right now Gary Parrish is predicting 2 teams to make the tournament. Drake and Illinois State. While Creighton is on the Bubble. But I think Illinois State will fall off and Creighton will get an at large bid to the Tournament. But anything can happen during "Arch Madness"

Since: Mar 1, 2007
Posted on: January 16, 2008 4:53 pm

Missouri Valley Turned Upside Down!

Good points all, how many losses do you think SIU can afford before being out of an at large...or are they at that point now.  I would think the SOS would give them bubble hope to 10 or 11, but your point on the loss margins speaks volumes, those game wern't even competative for the most part.

Since: Nov 16, 2006
Posted on: January 16, 2008 4:29 pm

Missouri Valley Turned Upside Down!

SIU had some other decent wins. Mississippi St. and Western Ky. Both tough teams. Had SIU lost to USC, IU, and ISU by 5 or less, it wouldn't look so bad, but they got  bent over in all three of those games. Plus the embarassing loss to SLU doesn't help either.  Drake and ISU are both having great seasons so far, I just don't think it will end up that way considering the lack of experience for the teams being on top. Creighton, Bradley, and SIU know what it's about which is why this "upside down" valley will right itself come march.

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