Blog Entry

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

Posted on: March 14, 2008 5:08 pm

It's probably too early to know for sure. But my guess is that Tennessee's 89-87 victory over South Carolina in Friday's SEC quarterfinals secured a No. 1 seed for the Vols regardless of what happens in Saturday's semifinals. Why? Because even if UT loses to Vanderbilt or Arkansas they will get out of the weekend without a "bad" loss -- Vandy and Arkansas are both NCAA tournament teams, you know? -- and thus with a solid resume that'll be difficult to push to the second line.

Right now, the Vols are 28-3 with the No. 1 RPI and No. 1 Strength of Schedule in the country.

They've beaten Memphis.

And Xavier.

And Vandy.

And West Virginia.

And at least five other teams that figure to be in the NCAA tourament (Gonzaga, Mississippi State, Arkansas, Western Kentucky and Kentucky) plus at least another four that were either on the bubble as recently as yesterday (Florida and Ole Miss) or are still on the bubble today (Temple and Ohio State). Add it up, and that's nine victories over likely NCAA tournament teams and four more over legitimate bubble teams. And that's why the Vols are probably headed for a No. 1 seed regardless of what happens next.

Want the name of a possible surprise No. 1 seed?

Watch out for Texas.

The Longhorns are 27-5 with the No. 5 RPI and No. 6 Strength of Schedule in the country.

They've beaten Tennessee.


And Kansas.

And Saint Mary's.

And at least four other teams that figure to be in the NCAA tournament, namely Oklahoma (twice), Baylor (twice), Texas A&M and Kansas State. They're 5-2 against the Top 25, 10-3 against the Top 50. And if the Longhorns were to beat Oklahoma and presumably Kansas to win the Big 12 tournament they'd have a great case for a No. 1 seed and perhaps be in position to jump UCLA based somewhat on their December victory at Pauley Pavilion
Category: NCAAB
Tags: Tennessee, Texas

Since: Sep 7, 2007
Posted on: March 16, 2008 11:04 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

How do you NOT give a #1 to Texas/Kansas after today's Big 12 Championship game given Tennessee lost to Arkansas in the semifinal round of the SEC Tourney?  UCLA definite #1 in the West.  Memphis definite #1 in the South.  UNC definite #1 in the East.  That leaves just 1 spot left in the Midwest bracket - and the winner of the Big 12 is the missing piece of that puzzle.

Since: Oct 14, 2006
Posted on: March 16, 2008 9:41 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

If ever there were a time that I hoped you were correct Parrish, now is that time.  Everybody and their grandmother is saying Tennessee has probably lost their number 1 seed, but hopefully the committee will look at the Vols entire body of work this season and reward them justly with a top seed.

Since: Feb 24, 2008
Posted on: March 15, 2008 4:52 pm

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

So, North Carolina escapes today against Virginia Tech by winning on a last second shot. Using the same logic other posters have with Tennessee, UNC should lose their eligibility for a #1 NCAA tourney seed.

How ridiculous is that?

Get real folks - SOS & RPI take some of the emotion out. If KU and others had better records and SOS then they'd be in the running for the #1 seed.

I think Parrish has it about right - UT, UNC, Memphis and UCLA.

Since: Jan 28, 2007
Posted on: March 15, 2008 3:58 pm

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

Then do you just ignore their wins @Xavier, Gonzaga in Seattle, WV in NJ, Ohio St., just to name a few? How can you say that UT is not experienced? I mean come on. SOS is legit, which is why we are #1 in RPI.

Since: Mar 12, 2008
Posted on: March 15, 2008 2:54 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

the SEC is very weak this year. Other than UT and Vandy any of those teams could lose to a Gardner-Webb any day.Why waste a tourney spot on a 4-13 upset unless the SEC team is the 13 seed because that is where everyone behind UT, Vandy, and Miss ST belong. The texas' and Kansas' are superior in talent and coaching. KU brings 3 guys off the bench that would start on any top 25 team in the nation. You can argue UT's rpi and sos but when it comes to it, memphis was headed for a loss, and you cant crown UT for one close grind it out victory. They are too streaky and that press will get exploited by an experienced backcourt like russell robinson and Mario chalmers, or much like it did by AJ abrams and DJ agustin.

Since: Jan 25, 2007
Posted on: March 15, 2008 2:45 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

You lot can bash the Vols all you want. Say their inferior. Whatever. Read posts like the one above from ITAvol and see plenty of reasons why they should be a #1 seed. For my part  all you Vol haters can suck it 'cause guess what, they're GETTING a number one seed and all your cryin' ain't gonna change it. Secondly, we are five days away from win or go home. Ultimately who cares. It's the best sports tournament that exists and you Kansases and Texases and all can  play some  ball and are going to be super tough so don't worry about it. Just win and it matters not what seed you are. FIVE DAYS!

Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more,
Or close the wall up with our English dead!
In peace there's nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility;
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger:
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood...

Henry V: Act 3, Scene 1

Since: Mar 17, 2007
Posted on: March 15, 2008 1:28 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

I have some serious questions for the posters here. How can some of you  proclaim the TN close win against SC is a sign that they will be the first (possible) 1 seed to fall then turn around and say the UCLA "should have been loses" to Stanford, and especially Cal are great wins for a team that was getting tested.  The RPI is not a joke, it does not put bias into its equation.  TN has played the toughest schedule and has come out of it with only 3 losses.  One loss was early one to Texas(without JP Prince) the second was in the middle of the season without Duke Crews and the last was at Vandy 2 days after Memphis in a gimmick stadium.  I know TN is not the historical pick but lets be real here, TN is a legitimate challenger for the National Championship.  Every one of their players can score, so that when a guy like Lofton isnt playing well they can still win.  They do everything well (score inside, shoot 3's, rebound, defend, grind out wins, blow teams out, force turnovers, play with intensity for all 40 min)  The only flaw they have is FT shooting and it clearly has not caught up to them yet.  TN is a very good team.  They deserve a 1seed, win or loss this weekend.  Their resume proves it.

Since: Feb 10, 2008
Posted on: March 15, 2008 1:24 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

I never would have thought Tennessee would have been this legit this year. But, now that they knocked off a decent team and are headed for the SEC championship, they should have a locked up #1 spot.

Since: Feb 24, 2008
Posted on: March 15, 2008 12:41 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

I don't think Tennessee is any more vulnerable than anyone else. Early in the year the knock on the Vols was that they wouldn't be able to grind out close games in the meat of the conference schedule. They proved they can (and against Memphis at Memphis). They are in condition and, even when having an off night, find a way to win.

Everyone needs to get real - all the top ranked teams have had close calls against teams that they would normally (and in some cases already have) blow out. Have the Memphis fans forgotten their escape from UAB just a few weeks ago?

What these close games show me, regardless of the team (UCLA, Memphis, Tenn, UNC, Duke, Kansas, etc) is that these top teams have the poise and persistence to win on a down night, possibly facing an opponent that is playing inspired ball at that point in time.

How you win the close games tells me more than how many blowouts you have.

Plus, you've got to give the state of Tennessee some credit this year. Five teams likely in the NCAA tourney - Tennessee, Memphis, Austin-Peay and Belmont are all in for sure. Vanderbilt should make it as well, despite going down today at the hands of Arkansas.

For the sake of the SEC I hope Kentucky continues to claw its way back to their standard of play - they've done a great job since December. Florida will be back. Tennessee finally has a coaching staff and support to make it happen - you've got to admit Pearl was a great hire. Arkansas, Vandy, Bama are always tough in conference. Miss St. will shock some folks in the NCAA, as will Vandy.

Since: Jan 28, 2007
Posted on: March 15, 2008 12:37 am

Tennessee should have its No. 1 seed locked up

Or maybe you just haven't watched UT this year. They are just as deep if not deeper than Kansas. (I've watched both a lot) They played SC for the third time today, and the second seriously four days ago in their, according to you, time of not playing as well, and beat them by thirty two. It is tough to play a team three times especially back to back. As to the Vandy and KY losses are you serious? One was fourty eight hours after the Memphis game in the most hostile environment and we barely lost, and KY is really not bad anymore. Last time I checked ever possible one seed is having close calls, UCLA being BY FAR the most, and they should have lost.

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