The Grand National Championships

February 27, 2010

The Big and Pacific 10 Bubble Watchery.

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys — by Andrew @ 4:36 pm

Why two conferences? Because it’s simple. The Pac 10 only has three teams that are in contention. The Big 10 is pretty much locked in at 5 bids. And I am lazy. As you can probably tell, right?

In: Purdue. Despite the tragic Robbie Hummel injury? They’ve done more than enough to porbably be a #2 seed. Ohio State. A solid RPI, a massive run (9-1 in their last 10), and 5 wins in the RPI top 50 with 12 conference wins equals locked down. Michigan State does not have the number one seed resume anymore, but two gimme home games coming up and an overall solid resume means a lock. In terms of quality wins? (Maryland, Duke, Marquette, Ohio State, Purdue and Michigan State) Wisconsin has done a lot. If they got a road win versus Illinois? It may get them a three seed.

Barring a collapse: Illinois. The Las Vegas Invitational killed their computer numbers. (Losing to Bradley and Utah would keep anybody from getting in this year.) But they have a legitimate shot at 12 conference wins if they can steal one against Wisconsin or Ohio State and hold serve versus Minnesota. If not? They’ll likely get a second chance against Wisconsin in the tournament. If they don’t? Then things could be interesting. California. It was a big win today against Arizona State. They win against Stanford? And they have the computer numbers to be the at-large team.

Bubble Teams: Minnesota has an RPI nearing 80. They have to win tonight if they even want to think about the Tournament. Arizona State. They have an RPI in the 50’s and don’t have the resume to handle getting upset even once. (Best win? San Diego State.) But they are better than Washington. Their RPI kisses 60, and they’re 1-6 on the road. Their last three regular season games? On the road.

UPDATE: Minnesota is up double figures against Illinois. 46-31 as I type this. Could the Big Ten only get four teams?


February 26, 2010

Big East in a Bubble Scenario?

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys — by Andrew @ 3:37 pm

In? Syracuse. Even with a gimpy Wes Johnson they’ll be a #2 seed. Villanova. They’re also a #2 seed. Maybe a #1 seed if they make a tournament run. West Virginia. You think a team that has an RPI and SOS of 5/3 has done enough to get in? I know I do.

Barring a collapse? Pittsburgh. The non-conference wasn’t impressive. But they won ten games and they’re at the easy point of their schedule. Providence and Rutgers in Pittsburgh equals soon Panther fan. Soon. Georgetown. A couple of weird losses (at Rutgers, South Florida, and Old Dominion) means they have to win at least one more game. Louisville? Yeah. I’ll leave them here. But two road games at UConn and Marquette and the return match with Syracuse? It means there could be that sort of collapse.

Bubble teams? Marquette. Sure, they control their own destiny. Louisville, Seton Hall, and Notre Dame are all quite winnable. But a .500 in the Big East Marquette is going to need to work a miracle to get in. 10 wins would still need tournament help. UConn is in a similar boat as Marquette, though with a strength of schedule at 2 they could go 9-9 and have a real case to be in. (But they have Notre Dame and South Florida on the road. Intricate.) Notre Dame? They also have to travel to Georgetown. And with a gimpy Harangody? Seton Hall is on the fringes. They beat Marquette and I’ll delve into their case further.

One out of the four bubble teams is going to give the Big East seven berths. The Tournament is going to be fun.

The Big 12 in a Bubble Scenario?

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys — by Andrew @ 5:58 am

It’s pretty well locked in. Kansas is going to be a #1 seed, It’s just going to happen. Kansas State has been impressive all year, and they should enjoy a two seed as a reward for it.

Likely in barring a complete collapse? Missouri still has to make a swing through the Kansas’, but you know what? 10 Big 12 wins and an RPI above 40 is an invitation to the dance, no matter if you lost to Oral Roberts. Texas had a bad month. But road games at Texas A&M and Baylor are good enough for seeding. Win one of those? It’s locked in. Baylor has two near gimmes, and that would get them to 10 wins. But with an RPI/SOS of 12/19? You could say that they’re locked in. Speaking of Texas A&M? The RPI/SOS is 18/6. If they win one more game? That should be enough.

The official bubble team? Oklahoma State. They really have no indefensible loss. The RPI and SOS reside in the mid-30’s. They did beat Kansas State in Manhattan, and that’s nice. But they would need to either take Kansas or Texas A&M to avoid needing a tournament win. 

Then again? With only five at large teams from non Big six conferences right now? (Richmond, Rhode Island, Xavier, BYU, and UAB*.) Oklahoma State probably has nothing to worry about.

*And UAB still has to make a run with Memphis and at UTEP. Not safe yet.

February 24, 2010

The ACC in a Bubble Scenario.

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys — by Andrew @ 12:16 am

Who’s in? Duke. They’re locked in. Nothing you can do about it but root against them.

Who’s just about? Maryland. Even if they win one of their last four? It’s 10 ACC wins with solid computer numbers. Nothing wrong with that. Virginia Tech. The strength of schedule sucks and they have no marquee win if the wheels fall off. But with North Carolina State and Boston College on the schedule? 23 wins and 10 ACC wins probably will not be denied. Wake Forest. A disaster of a loss to North Carolina state would be all but forgotten with wins at home versus North Carolina and Clemson. Florida State. The schedule sets up nicely. Wake Forest and Clemson? Those are the home games. Miami and North Carolina? Those are the road games. 3-1 is enough.

On the Bubble? Clemson. I can see how you’d say they should be up a level. Several decent wins and they have no truly indefensible loss. Illinois has a legitimate shot at 12 Big Ten wins. That’s Tournament right there. But road games at Maryland, Florida State and Wake Forest do not bode well. And don’t forget that Georgia Tech is in the danger zone as well. They will need to go to Littlejohn fighting for their lives.

And speaking of the Bees? They should beat Boston College. But they may be going into a home game with Virginia Tech needing a win to get to 8-8. And Virginia Tech is never a gimme.

The ACC will likely get six bids. Maybe seven. Well, if you look at the scenarios. The Pac-10 is only getting two teams. The Mountain West is only getting two teams. And the A-10? Any talk of six bids was surely exaggerated. Dayton is looking like they’re gonna have to steal to get in the tournament.



February 18, 2010

The Bucks made a couple of moves.

Nothing as inherently earth-shaking as the Rockets. And nothing near as funny as the Clippers getting a back-up and an expiring contract for Marcus Camby. But there was some interesting value culled.

The deal with the Sixers can break interesting. In most aspects, it’s really a challenge trade in terms of Meek for a #2. I know Skiles is going to like Ivey’s inherent Royal Ivey. But the gangsta Primoz Brezec is not going to be around next seaon. And as for the Bucks? They can get both a ninja rebounder like a Kenneth Faried as well as an upside play like an Alexy Shved.

Or a reverse. General Greivous and Latavious Williams? It can only help.

Then again? Meeks could become a killer with a change of scenery. Many people called that pick a sleeper. My first instinct is to like this deal. But it could change quickly.  

Salmons for the expiring contracts of Hakim Warrick and Joe Alexander? It depends. Salmons is a very versatile piece. He can play the two, three, and even the four if you want to run a small ball. His offensive game is a between a three and a four. The only thing is? His defense is average on its best day. Skiles may not use him as much as he should.

But a line-up of Jennings-Ridnour-Salmons-Ilyasova-Bogut? It most definitely seems like it could be worth som running as well as some gunning.

This could be an interesting Trade Deadline.

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys — by Andrew @ 12:20 am

The Rockets apparently just traded for Kevin Martin. At least according to Marc Stein.

I’m gonna wait to learn more, but you know what? Until further notice, Morey did something masterful. Martin is good enough to be deemed a superstar. And Sacramento wants to get in the 2010 lotteratorium?

LOL What?

Portland picks up Camby. Like it.

February 11, 2010

I’m still not over the fact that The Meat Tree McCamey is hotter than a Ghost Chile

Filed under: EVERYTHING I SAY IS IMPORTANT! — by Andrew @ 1:15 am

And I had to travel through a 6 inch dusting of snow to find out that I couldn’t sell any of the other five tickets I ended up with AND watch the Badgers grow colder than Ryan Grant’s reception to my Marge Schott dick joke in the final Ten Minutes.

I am too sad to type further missives in longer than 140 characters.

February 8, 2010

The Big 10 Race, in a nutshell.

It’s basically decided. Anyone doing worse than Illinois has no shot. As I said previously? We still have seven tournament contenders. And yet…we only have five teams that are looking at the conference title.

Michigan State is bloodied, and there are four contenders breathing down their neck. Can they hold on? Yes. Suffice it to say they can.

Why? Sure, Purdue poses a problem without Kalin Lucas, even at Breslin. But after that we have Sparty facing Penn State twice, Indiana, and Michigan. That’s four wins. Ohio State comes to Breslin, and Purdue has a return match. Sparty could very well go 6-1. But 5-2 gets them to 14-4.

Homeristic tendencies aside? The Badgers have a shot to make run the table. With Al Nolen ineligible, traveling to the barn becomes easier. Northwestern struggles on the boards, and that’s at home. Not to say that Illinois doesn’t have the length to cause fits for Wisky, but suffice it to say that that the Badgers are looking at a 7-1 finish. Split versus Illinois, sweep Indiana, beat Iowa, Northwestern and Minnesota. So that is also a 14-4 finish.

Ohio State has two tough games as well to end the year. Purdue comes to Value City, and they travel to the Breslin. They also have two against Illinois. Indiana, Penn State, and Michigan vibe as gimmes. I see this as a 6-2 finish. But that means 13-5. It’s a little tougher of a road.

A lot tougher of a road belongs to Illinois. 4 games against Wisconsin and Ohio State. Add to that a game against Purdue, and there’s a distinct possibility they will lose all five of these games. They travel to Ann Arbor and get Minnesota at home. I’ll say they get three. Enough to get in the tournament, but 11-7 is strictly second echelon.

Purdue looks like they’ll have a say in the conference championship. Two versus Sparty, and I think they’ll get them both. But they have to travel to the Barn and Value City. Admittedly?That’s a strange scenario and they won’t go unscathed. But they’ll make the conference championship a triple triad.

It will also make the tournament fun.

February 7, 2010

The Ten Things I Learned from this Thought Exercise?

  1. The Mid-Major conference tournament to watch? The Colonial Athletic Conference. They have four teams who I would not be surprised to see in the second weekend. Old Dominion already took down Georgetown. But you know what? With Northeastern and Virginia Commonwealth rocking the suburbs, and William and Mary lurking, you will not see ODU win the conference.
  2. Virginia Commonwealth will. Utah State will probably run down Louisiana Tech and get the WAC coming into the home stretch. Charlotte also probably won’t win the A-10, and with Richmond and Dayton with very similar solid resumes? The March 5th game in Dayton will likely decide who joins Xavier, Temple, and Rhode Island.
  3. The Big East dream of 8 bids is very much alive. South Florida has climbed up onto the bubble with Gus Gilchrist nursing a mangled ankle. And I’m sure that all is forgiven for that CMU loss. Louisville will have the super SOS number that will have 20 wins be enough for their entry. Marquette has been suffering through some bad luck this year, but their schedule is soft enough that they can run to the Conference tourney unbeaten.
  4. The Pac-10? They will be lucky to get three bids. Arizona State doesn’t have the computer numbers. USC’s digits are worse. Arizona will inexplicably get a bid just to spite me.
  5. Northwestern also could get in despite the computer numbers saying nothing of the sort. Pomeroy has this team going 21-10 and 9-9. If they beat the Golden Gophers at Welsh-Ryan and hold serve with the downy soft schedule. It’s the one team that has never made the tournament from a Big Six school that went better than .500 in conference. You think a team like UAB is going to get in over them?
  6. Teams like UAB, Wichita State, William and Mary, Richmond, Northeastern, and San Diego State will further prove the continuing irrelevancy of the RPI to the selectionariat. All these teams will have decent to great computer numbers. All will go to the NIT.
  7. The most backdooring bubble team in the last four in? Oklahoma State. James Anderson will carry the team upon his back.
  8. The worst team that is still currently still alive for an at-large berth? Southern Miss.
  9. The three conferences that will steal an at-large berth for a multi-bid league? The MVC, the Horizon, and the West Coast. If Siena doesn’t win their tournament? Well. That would be interesting, now wouldn’t it?
  10. We’ll be living in a weird world where the Mountain West will be getting more bids than the Pac-10 and as many as the SEC. The A-10 has a legitimate case for five bids. That’s on the level of any conference not named the Big East. I’d be very disappointed if the selection committee shorts these leagues.

February 6, 2010

The Top 30 teams on the Bubble Watch.

Filed under: Basketball is played by tall guys,Bubble Watch — by Andrew @ 11:00 pm

I shall present them without comment, for I am under the gun in terms of writing something else and I will get back to that soon enough.

Projected Auto Bids (in order of RPI)
Michigan State
Northern Iowa
St. Mary’s
Kent State
Louisiana Tech
Sam Houston State
Weber St.
College of Charleston
Murray State
Morgan State
Coastal Carolina
Stony Brook
Arkansas State
Robert Morris
Morgan State
Jackson State

And that means we’ll have 31 teams as at-larges. But first? We’ll have the teams that should be in barring a complete and total disaster.

Should Be In
West Virginia
Kansas State
New Mexico
Rhode Island
Wake Forest
Texas A&M
Georgia Tech

So this leaves us at 52 teams. Which means I will have 13 teams that have an in, and 12 teams that are out.


  1. Xavier
  2. Ohio State
  3. Maryland
  4. Ole Miss
  5. Florida State
  6. Marquette
  7. Louisville
  8. Florida
  9. Washington
  10. UNLV
  11. Clemson
  12. Old Dominion
  13. Oklahoma State
  14. Florida
  15. South Florida
  16. Dayton
  17. Richmond
  18. UAB
  19. Missouri
  20. Virginia Commonwealth
  21. Arizona
  22. William and Mary
  23. Utah State
  24. Witchita State
  25. Northwestern
  26. Minnesota
  27. Tulsa
  28. Texas Tech
  29. UConn
  30. Cincinnati
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