Posted on: February 14, 2011 6:26 pm
Edited on: February 16, 2011 7:06 am
 

Schmolik 64 Update (2/14/11)

Hello, college basketball fans!

Welcome to the first update for the 2011 Schmolik 64. At the end of the regular season, I will pick a complete NCAA bracket with the teams I think belong in the NCAA field and where they should be seeded. Up to then, there will be updates to see where your team stands if the season ended today (Records as of Sun. Feb. 13, 2011).

Until Championship Week, I will only seed the top 12 seeds. The bottom four seeds are usually reserved for one bid conferences in which usually only the conference champion goes from those conferences. For this year to accommodate the new "First Four" format, I am reserving two 12 seed lines for the "First Four". You should interpret these as being among the last teams to get into the field (although there could be exceptions based upon bracketing rules which prevent the actual last four from making the field).

Until the final bracket, the #1 seeds will not be given ranks (although geographic placement will be considered) and no semifinal matchups will be provided.

For the record, I know there are 68 teams now but if I had my way there would still be just 64 teams and when I started the Schmolik 64 there were just 64 teams.

Here's the bracket update for Feb. 14, 2011.

EAST REGIONAL (Newark, NJ Fri/Sun March 25-27)

Cleveland, OH (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(1) Pittsburgh vs (16)
(8) Temple vs (9) Colorado State

Denver, CO (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(5) Texas A&M vs (12) Cincinnati
(4) Arizona vs (13)

Chicago, IL (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(6) Syracuse vs (11) Missouri State
(3) Wisconsin vs (14)

Charlotte, NC (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(7) Tennessee vs (10) Valparaiso
(2) Duke vs (15)

SOUTHEAST REGIONAL (New Orleans, LA Thur/Sat March 24-26)

Cleveland, OH (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(1) Ohio State vs (16)
(8) St. Mary's vs (9) Georgia

Washington, DC (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(5) Xavier vs (12) First Four - Texas El Paso/Harvard
(4) Louisville vs (13)

Tampa, FL (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(6) Missouri vs (11) UNLV
(3) Florida vs (14)

Chicago, IL (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(7) George Mason vs (10) Illinois
(2) Notre Dame vs (15)

SOUTHWEST REGIONAL (San Antonio, TX Fri/Sun March 25-27)

Tulsa, OK (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(1) Kansas vs (16)
(8) Florida State vs (9) Utah State

Tucson, AZ (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(5) Vanderbilt vs (12) Princeton
(4) Connecticut vs (13)

Washington, DC (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(6) St. John's vs (11) UAB
(3) Purdue vs (14)

Tucson, AZ (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(7) UCLA vs (10) Marquette
(2) San Diego State vs (15)

WEST REGIONAL (Anaheim, CA Thur/Sat March 24-26)

Tulsa, OK (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(1) Texas vs (16)
(8) Washington vs (9) Memphis

Tampa, FL (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(5) Villanova vs (12) First Four: Butler/Michigan
(4) North Carolina vs (13)

Charlotte, NC (Fri/Sun March 18-20)
(6) Kentucky vs (11) Minnesota
(3) Georgetown vs (14)

Denver, CO (Thur/Sat March 17-19)
(7) West Virginia vs (10) Old Dominion
(2) Brigham Young vs (15)

Big East (11)
Big 10 (6)
SEC (5)
Big 12 (4)
MWC (4)
ACC (3)
C-USA (3)
Pac-10 (3)
A-10 (2)
Colonial (2)
Horizon (2)
Ivy (2)
MVC (1)
WAC (1)
WCC (1)
Remaining Automatics (16)
Unclaimed Slots (2 - reserved for party crashers)

Compare my bracket to CBS Sports Bracketology and many others at Bracket Project's Bracket Matrix.

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Schmolik
 
Posted on: April 23, 2010 6:52 pm
Edited on: April 24, 2010 6:27 am
 

Schmolik's Dream Big 10 Expansion

Hello, college basketball fans!

A big topic in the media these past few months has been the expansion of the Big 10 teams. Those of you who know me know I am an alum and huge fan of Illinois. I was at the 2005 game in Chicago when my Illini made the improbable comeback to beat Arizona in the Elite Eight to make the Final Four. In addition, I have a graduate degree from another Big 10 school. Penn State. So of course I am rooting for Big 10 expansion. While I may have a lot of preferred teams I also am realistic. While my favorite college sport of course is basketball, I do know football also counts, money also counts, and academics also counts. That being said, my dream expansion I feel is very reasonable on the other counts and would make the Big 10 arguably if not unarguably the best basketball conference in America.

My proposed expansion: Add Syracuse, Pittsburgh, and Connecticut.

Just see what happens to Big 10 basketball based upon NCAA tournament performance since 2000:

Current conference setups:

Big 10 as is:
92 wins, 22 Sweet 16, 9 Final Fours, 1 Championship (MSU 2000)

Big East as is:
115 wins, 33 Sweet 16, 8 Final Fours, 2 Championships (Syracuse 2003, UConn 2004)

ACC:
101 wins, 22 Sweet 16, 10 Final Fours, 5 Championships (Duke 2001 and 2010, North Carolina 2005 and 2009, Maryland 2002)

My proposal with Syracuse, Pitt, and UConn moving to the Big 10:

Pitt, Syracuse, and UConn: 49 wins, 15 Sweet 16's, 3 Final Fours, 2 Championships

Big 10 with the Big 3:
141 wins, 37 Sweet 16's, 12 Final Fours, 3 Championships

Big East without the Big 3:
66 wins, 18 Sweet 16's, 5 Final Fours, No Championships 

Not only would the new Big 10 clearly be better than the new Big East, the new Big 10 would rival the ACC (they would lead in every category except national championships, which of course is really the most important category).

Big 10 with the Big 3:
141 wins, 37 Sweet 16's, 12 Final Fours, 3 Championships

ACC:
101 wins, 22 Sweet 16, 10 Final Fours, 5 Championships (Duke 2001 and 2010, North Carolina 2005 and 2009, Maryland 2002)

Now of course the three I chose also have football teams. Pitt is a decent Big East football team. UConn is up and coming. Syracuse of course is awful now but they have had success in the past and have been a rivalry of Penn State before Penn State joined the Big 10. In terms of economics, Syracuse and UConn can help bring more fans from the Northeast including the New York market and in UConn's case most of New England into the Big 10. Pitt doesn't really add to the geographical mold but Pittsburgh isn't any slouch in terms of a market and while the Big 10 may have a following in Pittsburgh because of Penn State, they would all but own it if Pittsburgh joined the Big 10 and imagine how big Pitt/PSU and Pitt/OSU football games would be? As for academics, Pitt and Syracuse are AAU members
which is seemed by many to be a strong selling point to Big 10 candidacy. Connecticut is not an AAU member is but is ranked 66th according to US News & World Report magazine academically (Pitt is 56th and Syracuse is 58th). While none of the three is a slam dunk in any area except college basketball, I feel the total package of all three should be qualified candidates for Big 10 expansion.

Now the one team I don't want to see in the Big East that everyone says is a threat to join the Big 10? Rutgers. OK, the last time Rutgers made the NCAA tournament was 1991. Since the NCAA tournament field expanded in 1985, Rutgers is a great 0-2 in the NCAA's over a 26 year span. You can have UConn (2 NC's), Syracuse (1 NC), or Pitt (solid program last decade), or Rutgers. Now Rutgers is much better football school that Syracuse and probably better than UConn (Pitt and Rutgers about even). But basektball is miles ahead at the other three schools than Rutgers. Now of course football drives more tickets but here's why basketball is more important. Strength of schedule means a lot more in college basketball than college football. In college football, if you win seven games it doesn't matter who you play, you're going to a bowl. So what if two of our wins are UConn and Syracuse. They still count. By contrast, the Big 10 was doomed by three lousy RPI killers this season (Penn State, Indiana, and Iowa). We finished 10-8 in the Big 10 but had an RPI of 75, arguably the biggest reason Illinois missed the NCAA's and why Ohio State's RPI was in the 20s. Add Rutgers to that and see what happens. And I can live with a bad basketball team if they have a great football team (Penn State). Rutgers is an awful basketball team and an above average football team. Syracuse is an awful football team but a great basketball team. And I'll take Syracuse basketball over Rutgers football any day of the week. Heck, I'll take Syracuse football over Rutgers basketball any day of the week too. As for media, except for that run in 2006 does anyone in New York care about Rutgers any more than Syracuse or UConn? All three teams are pretty much fish out of water for most of the Big 10. But the one team that has a connection to any of the Eastern schools? Penn State. In the 80's, Penn State and Pitt was a huge in state rivalry. When Syracuse was good, Penn State and Syracuse was a big rivalry as well. Penn State never cared about Rutgers.

As for Rutgers, they should be happy to even be in the Big East. A long time ago, Rutgers and my local boys Temple were in the Big East in football. In the late 90's, both Temple and Rutgers sucked at football but Temple basketball was great with three NCAA Elite Eights between 1988 and 1993 and Rutgers basketball also sucked. Yet when the Big East wanted to grant access to Big East basketball and other sports, they chose Rutgers (and West Virginia, who sucked in basketball back then too). Then we all know Temple was kicked out of the Big East because they sucked at football. Yet Rutgers also sucked (it wasn't until the mid 2000's they got good) and got to stay. I have no love for Rutgers or the Big East. If my scenario takes place, Big East football gets burned to the ground and Rutgers goes with it. I certainly don't want to see Rutgers get saved by the Big 10 and Pitt and/or Syracuse get screwed over.

While my "Big 14" is great, it might be even better. Add Maryland and Notre Dame. In addition to two more good basketball programs, Maryland and Notre Dame are also fine academic institutions (Maryland is AAU), Maryland gives the Big 10 the DC area and I think Notre Dame sells itself. I don't think Maryland would want to leave the ACC to rival with just Penn State. But what if they could rival with Syracuse, Pitt, and UConn as well? They could join a more Northeastern league than the mostly southern ACC. They use to rival with Virginia but now Virginia Tech is Virginia's biggest rival and I don't see much a rivalry between Maryland and Boston College. And Notre Dame would have more reason to join the "Big 14" if the Big East lost three of its biggest basketball teams as well as three football teams. I don't think either Maryland or Notre Dame would join away but might join a better Big 10 (especially with a weakened Big East).

So my lineup (longshots in parentheses):

East: Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Connecticut, (Maryland)
West: Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, Northwestern, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, (Notre Dame)

To me and Big 10 basketball...
Pitt, Syracuse, and UConn to the Big 10? A SLAM DUNK!
Rutgers to the Big 10? AN AIR BALL!
Posted on: April 23, 2010 5:35 pm
 

Thoughts on College Basketball Expansion to 68

Hello, college basketball fans!

Big news in the college basketball world as the NCAA's will be going to 68. While I want it to go back to 64, 68 is a lot better than 96. Some talk is that the NCAA purposedly pushed 96 to make 68 look like a great thing and we all know it was a ploy to get a new TV contract (which they did).

Speaking of the new TV contract, of course the NCAA Final Four is headed to cable ... but in 2016. And after that, it will still be on CBS every other year up to 2023. I still think the Final Four deserves to be on free TV annually and the ratings justify it but this is a lot better than college football (and of course this actually is a playoff is also a great thing).  And at least ESPN didn't get it. I do realize cable TV has much more money to throw around (subscriber fees) but exposure is important too. Even if 90% of America has cable, how many of you would voluntarily cut off 10% of your audience? In the short term, you get more money but in the long run you hurt yourself. The NBA had a lot more playoff games on NBC before they moved most if not all of the conference finals games as well as the rest of the playoffs and the All Star game to cable. Ratings have plummetted. Of course, a lot of it is there is no Michael Jordan but still a lot less exposure. Same with baseball when only one LCS is now on free TV. What league by far is the most popular now? The league that has 95% of games on free TV in local markets and all of their playoff games. And the few cable games are shown locally on local stations. MLB doesn't even do that for playoff games. If you wanted to see my Phillies in the LCS last year, you had to get cable. The NFL actually cares about its fans and about the future instead of the present. They're also the only league where a large majority of games, including the Super Bowl, start before 7pm. Baseball went to all night games for the World Series and basketball to all night games for the NBA Finals, including on the weekends and Sundays. The NFL plays its Super Bowl around 6pm or 6:30pm. Would MLB or the NBA start a game that early on Sunday or Saturday? No. Most kids today may have never seen the end of a World Series or NBA Finals game. But they have seen the end of a Super Bowl. Guess which league these kids will watch 20 years from now.

As for the future play in round, I hope the NCAA finally comes to its senses and gives us the play in games that are fair and the play in games we want. Let's make the teams that actually "earned" their way in the field have to play an extra game to make the 64 while teams that barely get in get to the "main field". The last teams in the field should be happy they have a chance to make the field. Why take away a Winthrop's chance to play a Duke or a Kentucky and play in an arena with seven other teams and make them play in Dayton in front of few fans? Tell me this year you wouldn't have rather seen UTEP vs Illinois play for a 12 seed than Pine Bluff and Winthrop play for a 16? That being said, at least I am assuming they will play all four play in games in the same city and likely the same day so maybe the 8 teams will at least share an arena together before four of them go home. But if the NCAA wants to make more money and if CBS/Turner were smart, they would give us the play in games we all want, four play in games among at large games with the winners advancing as 12 seeds. Who knows, maybe one of these winners beats the 5 seed or even get to the Sweet 16. We know no 16 seed will ever win over a 1 in this format.

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: March 14, 2010 5:09 pm
 

Final 2010 Schmolik 64 Final Comments

Hello, college basketball fans!

My final Schmolik 64 is complete. Here's my rationale behind my picks.

West Virginia got the last #1 seed over Duke. Winning the Big East tournament was in my opinion bigger than winning the ACC tournament. In addition, West Virginia also has wins over Villanova (at Villanova), Georgetown, and Pittsburgh. Similar logic holds as Georgetown is my last #2 seed over New Mexico. Despite their rough stretch, they won 6 games over teams in the top 15 RPI.

On the end, it came down to Illinois, Mississippi State, Rhode Island, Virginia Tech, and Florida. I'm sure most people have cried favoritism but I posted two polls on CBS Sports.com comparing the last few bubble teams. Illinois won both polls, one with the names and one with "blind resumes". Illinois was chosen despite having by far the highest RPI of the five teams. So technically I didn't pick Illinois, the fans at CBS Sports did. If the committee continues to go with "quality wins" as a big deciding factor, Illinois has three wins over top 25 teams, more than the other four teams combined. They also have the most top 50 wins (five). I think it's going to come down to these five for the last spot. I don't think Illinois should get in over Minnesota (Minnesota is also in).

Schmolik
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: March 14, 2010 4:50 pm
Edited on: March 14, 2010 5:33 pm
 

Final 2010 Schmolik 64

2010 Schmolik 64

Hello, college basketball fans!

Welcome to the Final 2010 Schmolik 64!

Regional matchups in the Final Four are Midwest vs West and East vs South

Automatic bids in CAPS

MIDWEST REGIONAL (St. Louis, MO Fri/Sun March 26-28)

Oklahoma City, OK (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
1 KANSAS (32-2) vs 16 WINTHROP (17-13)
8 Gonzaga (25-8) vs 9 WASHINGTON (24-9)

San Jose, CA (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
5 Richmond (26-7) vs 12 Unlv (24-8)
4 Villanova (24-7) vs 13 MURRAY STATE (28-4)

Jacksonville, FL (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
6 Maryland (22-8) vs 11 SIENA (27-6)
3 Pittsburgh (24-8) vs 14 UC SANTA BARBARA (19-9)

Milwaukee, WI (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
7 SAN DIEGO STATE (23-8) vs 10 Utah State (26-7)
2 OHIO STATE (27-7) vs 15 HOUSTON (18-15)

WEST REGIONAL (Salt Lake City, UT Thur/Sat March 25-27)

Buffalo, NY (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
1 WEST VIRGINIA (27-6) vs 16 VERMONT (25-9)
8 Georgia Tech (21-12) vs 9 Missouri (22-10)

New Orleans, LA (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
5 Vanderbilt (23-8) vs 12 Texas El Paso (26-6)
4 Michigan State (24-8) vs 13 CORNELL (25-4)

San Jose, CA (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
6 Xavier (24-8) vs 11 Louisville (20-12)
3 New Mexico (29-4) vs 14 MONTANA (20-9)

Oklahoma City, OK (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
7 NORTHERN IOWA (28-4) vs 10 Wake Forest (19-10)
2 Kansas State (25-6) vs 15 NORTH TEXAS (22-8)

EAST REGIONAL (Syracuse, NY Thur/Sat March 25-27)

Milwaukee, WI (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
1 KENTUCKY (32-2) vs 16 Play In Winner: LEHIGH (22-10) vs ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF (17-15)
8 Clemson (21-10) vs 9 Notre Dame (23-11)

Spokane, WA (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
5 Texas A&M (22-9) vs 12 NEW MEXICO STATE (21-11)
4 Wisconsin (23-8) vs 13 OHIO (20-14)

Providence, RI (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
6 Brigham Young (28-5) vs 11 Minnesota (21-13)
3 TEMPLE (27-5) vs 14 WOFFORD (26-8)

Providence, RI (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
7 Texas (24-9) vs 10 Florida State (22-9)
2 Georgetown (23-10) vs 15 ROBERT MORRIS (23-11)

SOUTH REGIONAL (Houston, TX Fri/Sun March 26-28)

Buffalo, NY (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
1 Syracuse (28-4) vs 16 E. TENNESSEE STATE (19-14)
8 OLD DOMINION (26-8) vs 9 ST. MARY'S (25-5)

Spokane, WA (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
5 Tennessee (25-8) vs 12 Illinois (19-14)
4 Baylor (24-7) vs 13 OAKLAND (24-8)

New Orleans, LA (Thur/Sat March 18-20)
6 BUTLER (25-4) vs 11 Marquette (22-11)
3 Purdue (27-5) vs 14 SAM HOUSTON STATE (21-7)

Jacksonville, FL (Fri/Sun March 19-21)
7 Oklahoma State (22-10) vs 10 California (23-10)
2 DUKE (29-5) vs 15 MORGAN STATE (27-9)

Big East: 8
Big 12: 7
Big 10: 6
ACC: 6
MWC: 4
SEC: 3
A-10: 3
Pac 10: 2
WCC: 2
C-USA: 2
WAC: 2
One bid: 20

Last Team In: Illinois

Just Missed: Mississippi State, Virginia Tech, Rhode Island, Florida

Schmolik






Category: NCAAB
Tags: Schmolik
 
Posted on: March 14, 2010 12:25 pm
 

Final Schmolik Bubble Watch (3/14/10)

Schmolik Bubble Watch

Hello, college basketball fans!

Updated: March 14, 2010

It's time for Schmolik's Bubble Watch. For many teams, this is a make or break week. Bubble Watch analyzes who is on the bubble and their chances of making the NCAA's.

First, teams that I feel are locks for the tournament. As always, I reserve the right to change my mind during the week. Automatic Bids not included. (* Still alive for automatic bid).

ACC: Duke*, Maryland, Clemson, Florida State, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech*
A-10: Temple*, Xavier, Richmond*
Big East: Syracuse, West Virginia*, Villanova, Pittsburgh, Georgetown*, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame
Big 10: Ohio State*, Purdue, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Minnesota*
Big 12: Kansas State, Baylor, Texas A&M, Texas, Oklahoma State, Missouri
C-USA: Texas El Paso
MWC: New Mexico, Brigham Young, UNLV*, San Diego State*
Pac 10: California
SEC: Kentucky*, Vanderbilt, Tennessee,
WAC: Utah State*
WCC: Gonzaga

Bubble Teams Still Alive for Automatic Bid
SEC: Mississippi State

Total # Locks: 34
Minimum # At Large Locks: 33
Automatic Bids: 31
Remaining Bids: 1
As of Now: 5 teams in contention. If Mississippi State wins, they are the one.

RPI Data courtesy of CBSSports.com as of March 14, 2010 morning.

RPI/ Conf or Non Conf RPI: Good RPI is 30's or higher, marginal is 40's, poor is 50's or below.
*Last 10 games: 7-3 or better is a strength, 5-5 or lower a weakness.
SOS/Non Conf SOS: Good is top 20, bad is below 100.
Top 25 games: Strength: Two or more, Weakness: Zero
Top 50 games: Strength: Four or more, Weakness: One or fewer
Bad losses: Weakness: Home losses to teams below 100 in RPI, Loss to teams below 200 in RPI

* CBSSports.com lists “Last 10” in their RPI data. Although the last 10 games or last 12 games has been removed as an official criteria, the official bracket procedures state “chronological results” are considered so a poor or strong finish may still matter.

Bubble Teams (In/Out as of Last Schmolik 64 Update)

ACC

Virginia Tech (In)

Strengths: Conference RPI (40)
Weaknesses: RPI (59), Non Conf RPI (98), Non Conf SOS (339!), no Top 25 wins

Tournament Result: Lost ACC 1st round game to Miami (seeded 12th in conference).

Atlantic 10

Rhode Island (Out)

Strengths: RPI (40), Conf RPI (5!)

Weaknesses: Conf RPI (81), 4-6 in last 10 games, no top 25 wins, only one top 50 win

Tournament Result: Lost A-10 SF game to Temple

Outlook:

Big 10

Illinois (Out)

Strengths: Three Top 25 wins (Vanderbilt, at Wisconsin, vs Wisconsin in Big 10 tournament), Five Top 50 wins
Weaknesses: RPI (74), Non Conf RPI (124), Non Conf SOS (111), 4-6 in last 10 games, Bubble Loss: Home to Minnesota

Tournament Result: Lost Big 10 SF game to Ohio State (double OT)

Outlook:

SEC

Florida (In)

Strengths: Conference RPI (37), Bubble Wins (Mississippi State),

Weaknesses: RPI (56), Non Conf RPI (78), Non Conf SOS (110), 4-6 in last 10 games, Bubble Loss (vs Mississippi State in SEC Tournament), Bad Loss: Home vs South Alabama

Tournament Update: Lost to Mississippi State in the SEC SF.

Mississippi State (Out)

Strengths: Bubble Wins: vs Florida in SEC Tournament, Sweep over Mississippi

Weaknesses: RPI (54), Non Conf RPI (69), Non Conf SOS (208), Bubble loss: at Florida, Bad Loss: Home vs Rider

Should Be In If: Only way to be 100% sure is to win
Should Be On the Bubble If: Loses

Schmolik

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Bubble, Schmolik
 
Posted on: March 13, 2010 8:54 am
 

Schmolik Bubble Watch - 3/13/10 (Upated RPI #'s)

Schmolik Bubble Watch

Hello, college basketball fans!

Updated: March 13, 2010 AM

It's time for Schmolik's Bubble Watch. For many teams, this is a make or break week. Bubble Watch analyzes who is on the bubble and their chances of making the NCAA's.

First, teams that I feel are locks for the tournament. As always, I reserve the right to change my mind during the week. Automatic Bids not included. (* Still alive for automatic bid).

ACC: Duke*, Maryland, Clemson, Florida State, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech*
A-10: Temple*, Xavier*, Richmond*
Big East: Syracuse, West Virginia*, Villanova, Pittsburgh, Georgetown*, Louisville, Marquette, Notre Dame
Big 10: Ohio State*, Purdue*, Michigan State, Wisconsin
Big 12: Kansas*, Kansas State*, Baylor, Texas A&M, Texas, Oklahoma State, Missouri
C-USA: Texas El Paso*
MWC: New Mexico, Brigham Young, UNLV*, San Diego State*
Pac 10: California*
SEC: Kentucky*, Vanderbilt*, Tennessee*
WAC: Utah State*
WCC: Gonzaga

Bubble Teams Still Alive for Automatic Bid
A-10: Rhode Island
Big 10: Minnesota, Illinois
Pac 10: Washington
SEC: Mississippi State

Party Crashers Still Alive for Automatic Bid
ACC: Miami, NC State
C-USA: Houston
WAC: New Mexico State

Total # Locks: 35 (not counting Big East, Big 12, and MWC champs)
Minimum # At Large Locks: 29
Automatic Bids: 31
Remaining Bids: 5
As of Now: 7 teams in contention. I may return some teams to consideration between now and Sunday.

RPI Data courtesy of CBSSports.com as of March 13, 2010 morning.

Thursday/Early Friday Update: Butler now automatic bid, Marquette, Notre Dame, Utah State, UNLV added to locks. Arizona State, Seton Hall, South Florida removed.

Friday Update: Mississippi removed from consideration. Kent State added to bubble list.

RPI/ Conf or Non Conf RPI: Good RPI is 30's or higher, marginal is 40's, poor is 50's or below.
*Last 10 games: 7-3 or better is a strength, 5-5 or lower a weakness.
SOS/Non Conf SOS: Good is top 20, bad is below 100.
Top 25 games: Strength: Two or more, Weakness: Zero
Top 50 games: Strength: Four or more, Weakness: One or fewer
Bad losses: Weakness: Home losses to teams below 100 in RPI, Loss to teams below 200 in RPI

* CBSSports.com lists “Last 10” in their RPI data. Although the last 10 games or last 12 games has been removed as an official criteria, the official bracket procedures state “chronological results” are considered so a poor or strong finish may still matter.

Bubble Teams (In/Out as of Last Schmolik 64 Update)

ACC

Virginia Tech (In)

Strengths: Conference RPI (39), Bubble wins: at Georgia Tech
Weaknesses: RPI (56), Non Conf RPI (100), Non Conf SOS (342!), no Top 25 wins

Tournament Result: Lost ACC 1st round game to Miami (seeded 12th in conference).

Outlook: As of Friday AM, Virginia Tech’s RPI was 52. Expect it to drop after losing to Miami. Great ACC profile (although loss to Miami hurts), horrible non conference profile. If the Selection Committee wishes to make a statement about non conference scheduling, look for the Hokies to get the shaft. If Georgia Tech upsets Miami, don’t be surprised if Georgia Tech passes Virginia Tech in the ACC pecking order.

Atlantic 10

Rhode Island (Out)

Strengths: RPI (38), Non Conf RPI (5!)

Weaknesses: Conf RPI (85), 5-5 in last 10 games, no top 25 wins, only one top 50 win

Should Be In If: They make the A-10 final, beating Temple
Should Be On the Bubble If: They lose to Temple

Outlook: If the A-10 will get another at large bid, it will be Rhode Island. They have the highest RPI, a terrific non conference RPI, and wins over Dayton and Charlotte.

Big East

No Bubble Teams

Big 10

Illinois (Out)

Strengths: Three Top 25 wins (Vanderbilt, at Wisconsin, vs Wisconsin in Big 10 tournament), Five Top 50 wins
Weaknesses: RPI (69), Non Conf RPI (123), Non Conf SOS (105), 5-5 in last 10 games (including 5 of last 7), Bubble Loss: Home to Minnesota

Should Be In If: They make the Big 10 final, beating Ohio State
Should Be On the Bubble If: They lose.

Outlook: Clearly have only one strength (quality wins), but it’s the one that the NCAA (at least according to almost everyone in the media) seems to like the most and teams have in the past gotten away with poor RPI numbers and poor finishes if they have a few quality wins. The RPI did crack the top 70 although still a very questionable RPI (and a loss to Ohio State probably drops it below 70 although I imagine not by much). Minnesota winning throws a wrench into things as the closer the two get in profile, you have to give the edge to Minnesota.

Minnesota (Out)

Strengths: Two Top 25 wins (vs Butler, Wisconsin), Four Top 50 wins
Weaknesses: RPI (68), Conf RPI (61), Non Conf RPI (74), Bad Losses: at Indiana, Home to Michigan

Should Be In If: They make the Big 10 final, beating Purdue.
Should Be On the Bubble If: They lose.

Outlook: With a lot of teams falling out, Minnesota is making a last ditch case to get in. They clearly have the top wins and even better a win at Illinois. In many ways, they are just like Illinois, lousy RPI numbers but good wins. Those bottom feeder Big 10 teams really hurt the Big 10 in RPI, not only Illinois and Minnesota but Ohio State and Michigan State (not even in the top 25). In conference, Illinois did finish a game ahead and had a tougher Big 10 RPI/SOS. Here’s a couple of scenarios I didn’t think were possible at the start of the week: 1) Minnesota would be the 5th Big 10 team instead of Illinois, 2) The Big 10 could actually get SIX teams in the NCAA’s. Hey, why not? Should Illinois and Minnesota play in the Big 10 final, can you say only the winner gets in?

Big 12
No Bubble Teams

Conf USA

No Bubble Teams

MWC

No bubble teams.

Pac 10

Washington (In)

Strengths: Non Conf RPI (23), 8-2 in last 10 games, Two top 25 wins (Texas A&M, California)

Weaknesses: Conf RPI (67), Bad Losses: Home to USC and Home to Oregon

Should Be In If: Probably can’t be sure unless they win it all.
Should Be On the Bubble If: They lose.

Outlook: The way things are going for Washington, it looks like they should be in. Certainly Stanford’s upset helped them win but prevented the Huskies from getting a quality win. Of course they can remove all doubt by winning over Cal.

SEC

Florida (In)

Strengths:  Conference RPI (37), Bubble Wins (Mississippi State),

Weaknesses: RPI (54), Non Conf RPI (77), Non Conf SOS (107), 4-6 in last 10 games, Bubble Loss (vs Mississippi State in SEC Tournament), Bad Loss: Home vs South Alabama

Tournament Update: Lost to Mississippi State in the SEC SF.

Outlook: Florida had beaten Mississippi State in the regular season already but in Gainesville. You would think MSU’s win in the SEC would be worth more. Still, considering Mississippi State had a bye helped. In addition, while Florida beat Michigan State and Florida State, Mississippi State has no top 25 wins. I’m not convinced that MSU is an automatic over Florida. The worst thing that happened Friday to the Gators was them losing to Mississippi State. The second worst thing probably was Minnesota beating Michigan State. It put Minnesota into bubble consideration and took away one of Florida’s Top 25 wins, leaving them just Tennessee.

Mississippi State (Out)

Strengths: Bubble Wins: vs Florida in SEC Tournament, Sweep over Mississippi

Weaknesses: RPI (63), Conf RPI (51), Non Conf RPI (71), Non Conf SOS (209), no top 25 wins, just one top 50 win, Bubble loss: at Florida, Bad Loss: Home vs Rider

Should Be In If: Makes the SEC final
Should Be On the Bubble If: Loses

Outlook: See Florida. While I don’t think it’s a done deal Mississippi State will be considered ahead of Florida, I guarantee they will be considered ahead of Ole Miss or there will be a lot of bad blood in that state between the two schools this upcoming year.

Other

None

Schmolik



Category: NCAAB
Tags: Bubble, Schmolik
 
Posted on: March 13, 2010 8:13 am
 

Schmolik Bubble Watch - 3/13/10 - Early Morning

Hello, college basketball fans!

I don't have updated RPI numbers and a lot of games were played yesterday so I will give you the short summary of my current bubble situation.

I feel San Diego State's win over New Mexico and Georgia Tech's win over Maryland put both of them in the field. Missisippi's loss in my (although not Jerry Palm's) mind removes them from bubble consideration. Meanwhile, many teams won yesterday to improve their cases which I feel knock out Wichita State and Kent State from at large consideration. My latest bubble has 7 teams competiting for a maximum of 5 spots (which could shrink if UTEP or Utah State loses or if somehow Miami or NC State wins the ACC). As a huge fan of one of these seven teams, I now have to root for the party crashers to lose. Let me warn Houston, New Mexico State, Miami, and NC State in advance, if you get in, I'm sending you to Spokane. I'm saying it now. I will do whatever I can do to send you there. If you're going to crash the party, you better be happy to go there. You're not getting a trip to California or Florida or New Orleans or some place nice. Then again, at least it's not Boise. Chances are also good that if you are the last team or last two teams I will put you in Spokane as well.

Teams that are still alive in conference tournaments:
Rhode Island
Washington
Mississippi State
Minnesota
Illinois

Teams done, waiting:
Florida
Virginia Tech




Category: NCAAB
Tags: Bubble, Schmolik
 
 
 
 
 
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