25 February 2013

NCAA Week 4 plus bubble thoughts

1) Florida 10-4
2) Indiana 9-3

3) Louisville 10-5
4) Gonzaga 10-2
5) Duke 12-3
6) Michigan 9-4

7) Kansas 12-3-1
8) Wisconsin 9-8
9) Syracuse 12-5
10) Pitt 9-6-1
11) Ohio St 6-7
12) Michigan St 8-6
13) Miami 10-3-1

14) Georgetown 10-3-1
15) Arizona 9-4
16) Oklahoma St 7-5-1

17) Minnesota 9-8
18) Creighton 8-6-1
19) Virginia 5-2-6
20) VCU 9-6
21) Colorado St 8-5-1
22) San Diego St 6-7
23) Marquette 7-6-1

24) Middle Tennessee St 1-3-1
25) Missouri 7-8

Ranked Teams
30) New Mexico 14-4
29) St Louis 8-4-1
36) Memphis 6-3
51) Butler 8-5-1
37) Notre Dame 7-6
45) Oregon 7-5-1
27) St Marys 6-3-2
49) Akron 4-3-1
75) Louisiana Tech 4-2-1

I have no idea how Louisiana Tech got a bunch of votes. They've played almost no meaningful games (especially in the last couple of weeks). They're likely to win their conference but aren't the best team in that conference, which is Denver at #50, so it's unclear if they'd merit any bubble conversation. I rather doubt it.

Here's the list of bubble teams identified by the bracket matrix as teams not getting a solid percentage of inclusions or as low at large teams. Maybe 3 or 4 of these are thus far looking like legit tournament teams. 7 of them will get in anyway. 11 won't.
19) Virginia. 6 non top 100 losses is undoubtedly their problem here. Right now they're in but they cannot afford any more weird losses.
26) Kentucky 6-8, presumably this is because of the injury to Noel. They did get a big win at home against Missouri this week, so they could remain in as well. With Noel they were a no-brainer for inclusion and at a higher seed.
27) St Marys 6-3-2. Not sure what this is all about. They're ranked after all. The win over Creighton during bracketbusters this weekend really helped here. Swept by Gonzaga, but Gonzaga's really good this year.
39) Ole Miss 4-6-1. I'm not sure that they actually should merit inclusion, but they're ranked highly enough to do so. A sweep of Tennessee and a win over Missouri (at home) are basically their only resume fodder. They're also the only decent team Middle Tennessee St has beaten. Loss to South Carolina hurts here.
40) Iowa 4-7-3. Very fringe votes for inclusion. They're really high on the MOV/tempo metrics and have 3 wins against the top 25 (Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa St, all at home), and lost by only 4 to Indiana (also at home). Their losses @ Virginia Tech, @ Purdue, and @ Nebraska all hurt a lot here and other than Iowa St, they've only got a win against N. Iowa non-conference of any note. I think they should be in, but they probably will not be without a deep Big Ten tournament run.
43) Baylor 5-9-2. Possibly safe, with a number of decent wins (Kentucky, Oklahoma St, BYU, Lehigh, and St John's). Oklahoma St and early win over Kentucky are the only resume fodder and they're losing a lot of games lately (6 of the last 8, with the only wins coming over in-conference cannon fodder). I could see them slide out.
50) Denver. 3-8. Probably has to win the WAC to get in but did get a nice road win during bracket busters this weekend.
52) Stanford. 5-10-2 Probably shouldn't get in and doesn't look like they will.
55) California. 5-9. Probably shouldn't get in either but looks like they might. Win @ Arizona and sweep of Oregon seems to be the keys here. They've only got a win over Denver to point to out of conference, where they lost to Harvard and Creighton, were blown out by Wisconsin, and lost by 1 to UNLV.
56) Villanova 6-9-1. Wins over Louisville, Syracuse, and Marquette are most likely why they would get in. Swept by Providence, loss to Columbia and only one win over the other Philly teams (St Joe's) would be arguments why not. I'd be fine with them in instead of Stanford or maybe Baylor though.
57) Maryland 3-5-3. Win over Duke is pretty much the only reason they're even in the conversation. NC State and Stony Brook are the only other good wins, with a close loss to Kentucky also. I doubt they get in without a couple of ACC tournament wins (over the Carolina teams).
58) Southern Miss 1-6-1. Shouldn't get in. Seems like a safe bet to miss out.
62) Tennessee. 7-9-1. Win over Wichita St is about it, and then the blowout over Kentucky put them on the radar. Unlikely to make it. They do have a lot of wins over quality teams, but most of them are modest wins rather than impressive stock.
64) Boise St 6-6-2. Win over Creighton on the road helped. Lost by 4 to Michigan St also. Otherwise, win over UNLV and a sweep of Wyoming is about it. I could see them getting in, but they've got a lot more buzz surrounding them than I suspect is warranted.
67) Temple 7-6-2. Wins over Syracuse and St Louis. Lost to Duquesne. Otherwise, wins over LaSalle and Villanova is about it. I guess I could see them getting in as well, but it's not a strong case.

84) Arizona St 5-6-2. Win over UCLA and a sweep of Colorado is about it here. Getting swept by Washington does not help. Loss to Utah and DePaul also doesn't help. They also got smacked by Arkansas, Creighton and Arizona. They're a fringe candidate, but they shouldn't even be a candidate.
86) St John's 5-7-4. Close wins over Cincinnati and Notre Dame, and Detroit is about it. Losses to San Francisco and UNC Asheville do not help. Again, a fringe candidate, but shouldn't be even involved. Blow out losses to every good team in their conference (Louisville, Syracuse,Pitt, Georgetown twice), plus Baylor should suggest this isn't a very competitive team.
NR) Charlotte. 5-6-2 I don't think a team I'm not even tracking should be included as even a fringe possible bubble team. Something tells me there's a huge flaw in the RPI system that they are. Win at Butler and at Davidson is about it here, plus a win against LaSalle. Destroyed by Miami, blown out by St Louis, lost at home to VCU, swept by Temple. Otherwise a lot of close games against mediocre teams. If I had to guess, they're behind George Mason in the #120 range.

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