OT / General Interest - Bubble Watch and Tourney Comments - Week of March 11 (Part 1) | Syracusefan.com

OT / General Interest - Bubble Watch and Tourney Comments - Week of March 11 (Part 1)

jncuse

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Current Bracket Matrix based on 51 brackets submitted today only (excludes 33 from Sunday)

Will post the schedule later -- but teams don't start until Wednesday or Thursday.

Rankings (out of 51)
Seton Hall 51
Miss St 49
Virginia 49
St John's 47
Colorado 43
Indiana St 33
----------
New Mexico 28
Villanova 13
Texas A&M 12
Wake 2
Pitt 2
Providence 2

Bolded teams are NET "Darlings". Teams with NET's (or RPI's) of 27, 28,29 and 33. This level of rank has always been good enough to get in from a P6 level (I think 32 might be the high miss), but they typically still have the quality win / bad loss that are good enough ... this year those teams have a bit weaker resumes compared to teams around 30 in the past. In prior years this divide happened for whatever reason closer to 40 than 30.

Personally I have Texas A&M and Providence over Villanova and New Mexico for sure. Colorado is up for debate.
 
No games of any real interest today -

Some starting tomorrow - I don't see "any over the top" games tomorrow, but for some its starting the path to an at-large with multiple wins, or teams wanting to avoid a bad loss. If any of these teams lose tomorrow I would consider them very likely out.

Games of interest Wednesday - all the teams below probably have to win their games to have a chance at an-large

2:30 Wake Forest vs Q3 Georgia Tech (Note A)
4:00 Butler vs Q2 Xavier (Note B)
4:30 Colorado St vs Q4 San Jose St (Note C)
6:30 Providence vs Q4 Georgetown (Note A)
7:00 Syracuse vs Q2 NC St (Note B)
7:00 Kansas St vs Q1 Texas (Note B)
7:00 New Mexico vs Q3 Air Force (Note A)
9:00 Villanova vs Q4 Depaul (Note A)
9:30 Cincy vs Q1 Kansas (Note D)
11:30 Utah vs Q3 Arizona St (Note B)


Note A - These are teams that start are currently outside the line per the matrix, but getting some mentions. They need the win tomorrow, to get the opportunity to win on Thursday that might put them over the top. But if they lose they are done.

For Wake it would be Pitt on Thursday
For Providence, it would be Creighton
For New Mexico, it would be Boise St
For Villanova, it would be Marquette.

As an aside, I'm not as high on Nova and New Mexico as others.

Note B: These are teams that are currently not getting any mentions but have a chance to get an early signature win in their conference tourney to jump them into the discussion.

If Syracuse wins tomorrow, it gets Duke on Thursday
For Butler it would be UConn
If Kansas St can beat Texas Wednesday, and then Iowa St Thursday it gets back in the discussion.

Note C - People are high on Colorado St. They are a 9 seed - perhaps a line high IMO. But if they lose a Q4 game tomorrow, all of a sudden they are right on the line.

Note D - These teams need at least 3 wins in the conference tournament.
 
Results so far today.

Wake 72 Notre Dame 59 - Sets up a possible "play-in" game against Pitt tomorrow. Might be enough for the winner to get in. But it certainly knocks the loser out.
 
They just panned the crowd at the Xavier-Butler game and talked about what a great crowd there is at MSG. There were a ton of empty seats! Do empty seats not count when the seating area is darker than the court area?
 
They just panned the crowd at the Xavier-Butler game and talked about what a great crowd there is at MSG. There were a ton of empty seats! Do empty seats not count when the seating area is darker than the court area?
Empty seats don't count when they get in the way of a narrative.
 
No games of any real interest today -

Some starting tomorrow - I don't see "any over the top" games tomorrow, but for some its starting the path to an at-large with multiple wins, or teams wanting to avoid a bad loss. If any of these teams lose tomorrow I would consider them very likely out.

Games of interest Wednesday - all the teams below probably have to win their games to have a chance at an-large

2:30 Wake Forest vs Q3 Georgia Tech (Note A)
4:00 Butler vs Q2 Xavier (Note B)
4:30 Colorado St vs Q4 San Jose St (Note C)
6:30 Providence vs Q4 Georgetown (Note A)
7:00 Syracuse vs Q2 NC St (Note B)
7:00 Kansas St vs Q1 Texas (Note B)
7:00 New Mexico vs Q3 Air Force (Note A)
9:00 Villanova vs Q4 Depaul (Note A)
9:30 Cincy vs Q1 Kansas (Note D)
11:30 Utah vs Q3 Arizona St (Note B)


Note A - These are teams that start are currently outside the line per the matrix, but getting some mentions. They need the win tomorrow, to get the opportunity to win on Thursday that might put them over the top. But if they lose they are done.

For Wake it would be Pitt on Thursday
For Providence, it would be Creighton
For New Mexico, it would be Boise St
For Villanova, it would be Marquette.

As an aside, I'm not as high on Nova and New Mexico as others.

Note B: These are teams that are currently not getting any mentions but have a chance to get an early signature win in their conference tourney to jump them into the discussion.

If Syracuse wins tomorrow, it gets Duke on Thursday
For Butler it would be UConn
If Kansas St can beat Texas Wednesday, and then Iowa St Thursday it gets back in the discussion.

Note C - People are high on Colorado St. They are a 9 seed - perhaps a line high IMO. But if they lose a Q4 game tomorrow, all of a sudden they are right on the line.

Note D - These teams need at least 3 wins in the conference tournament.

Losers of games today and officially done as at large candidates - Butler, Syracuse.
Biggest positive mover today was probably Kansas St.

Some interesting results.
1. Villanova barely got by Depaul 58-57. Probably bad time for a "1 point" win against a terrible team.
2. The B12 tournament might results in more teams getting in. Maybe they are gaming their own conference tournament!
- Kansas St will probably start getting some recognition after their win over Texas. Next up tomorrow is Iowa St - win that and they are certainly squarely on the bubble line.
- Cincy upset Kansas. They still need to beat Baylor in the QF's tomorrow and then the SF's as well to be considered as an-large.
 
Summary of results today.

  • I don't think Miss St had locked before today, but today's win over LSU may have did it for them. I wasn't as big on their resume as the matrix, at the same time its a modest bunch on the bracket.
  • Pitt beats Wake. Is Pitt now in? Right on the line IMO.
  • St. John's beat Seton Hall. Probably the best result for the big East. Firms up St. John's who was questionable, and Seton Hall should survive.
Line entering today per Matrix

(out of 54 entered today)
Mississippi St 52 (Q2 win over LSU)
Virginia 51 (Q2 vs BC at 9:30)
St John's 48 (Q2 Win over Seton Hall) -- huge win
Colorado 46 (Q2 vs Utah at 11:30)
Indiana St 39 (Watching)
New Mexico 25 (Q1 vs Boise at 11:30)
----------
Texas A&M 25 (Q2 vs Ole Miss at 7:00)
Villanova 7 (Q1 vs Marquette at 9:30)
Pitt 4 (Q1 Win over Wake)
Kansas St 4 (Q1 vs Iowa St at 7:00)
Wake 3 (Q1 loss to Pitt)
Providence 3 (Q1 vs Creighton at 7:00)
Cincy 2 (Q1 vs Baylor at 9:30)

Comments:
  • I bolded the 3 "NET" darlings (25, 26, 27), that I believe the matrix is overrating - included Villanova before they slipped to NET #38 -- and Nova is SOL also at this point.. In normal years teams with those RPI's or NET's tend to have better resume's and are locks to get in... I assume some have put them in because no P6 team below 34 I think, has missed in the NET era. But this year has had more strange things.
  • I certainly prefer Texas A&M to all of them. Right now I would have Texas A&M and Pitt in, and missing for sure would be New Mexico... and then one of Colorado / Indiana St.
  • If I could find somebody to bet $1,000 on that New Mexico misses the tournament, I would do it. Yes they have a NET of 25... but they are also only 3-6 in Q1, 6-7 in Q1+Q2, plus they have 2 bad losses (and one really bad Q4 one). That being said they have a nice opportunity tonight against Boise St that could change IMO.
  • I'm higher on Providence than others (certainly over Nova)... would be a big win for them tonight.
  • And the matrix starts to pick up the two teams I noted made good traction in the B12 yesterday (Kansas St and Cincy). If one of them gets a good result tongith, maybe the B12 to people's dismay does get 10 teams.
 
#1 seed watch.
Purdue, UConn and Houston have locked.

They all have great resumes, with many Q1 top half wins - they all have 7.
But I think in the end they give the overall #1 to Purdue to reward them for their OOC play -- Arizona. Alabama, Tennessee, Marquette, Gonzaga

As for the final #1
If Tennessee wins the SEC, I give it to them... but if not it goes to UNC if they win the ACC. and if they both lose and Arizona wins the PAC it goes to them.
 
#1 seed watch.
Purdue, UConn and Houston have locked.

They all have great resumes, with many Q1 top half wins - they all have 7.
But I think in the end they give the overall #1 to Purdue to reward them for their OOC play -- Arizona. Alabama, Tennessee, Marquette, Gonzaga

As for the final #1
If Tennessee wins the SEC, I give it to them... but if not it goes to UNC if they win the ACC. and if they both lose and Arizona wins the PAC it goes to them.
How can the powers at be not give Duke a one or a 2 if they win the ACC? ;)
 
How can the powers at be not give Duke a one or a 2 if they win the ACC? ;)

Technically the closest site for Tennessee to play their first round game is in Charlotte (which would knock Duke out of there), and that is usually the hard rule they use for locating pod teams, even if they want to play elsewhere.

But I'm certain Tennessee will play in Memphis, and Duke will get Charlotte.
 
Technically the closest site for Tennessee to play their first round game is in Charlotte (which would knock Duke out of there), and that is usually the hard rule they use for locating pod teams, even if they want to play elsewhere.

But I'm certain Tennessee will play in Memphis, and Duke will get Charlotte.
Every year.
 
Every year.

The difference this year though, is they will need to break bracketing procedure guidelines to get Duke to Charlotte.

In prior years they earned that NC location in round 1&2, based on running down the rankings and matching teams to closest pod site.
 
The A-10 continues it's long history of crazy postseason tournament results with Bonnies, Saint Joe's, Duquesne and VCU still standing. Top four seeds all lose their first game and are gone.
 
The A-10 continues it's long history of crazy postseason tournament results with Bonnies, Saint Joe's, Duquesne and VCU still standing. Top four seeds all lose their first game and are gone.

The A-10 is seemingly a bubble buster more often than not ... that just took a seed away from somebody as Dayton will still get in.
 
Thanks to the update from bpo57 we now know there is at least one bubble buster this week - the A-10

Bubble Buster Count this Week = 1 (A-10)
Bubble Buster Count last Week = 0 or 1 (depends on how you view Indiana St

Other potential bubble busters still alive (based on them winning their tournaments). Some will be removed after tonight's games.

ACC - (NC St, BC (playing now), Pitt (if not already in)
B12 - Cincy (playing now)
Big East - Providence, Villanova (playing now)
B10 - Indiana, Penn/Ohio St winner
MWC - New Mexico
SEC - Texas A&M, Georgia (playing now)

AAC - If FAU loses.
 
Final Summary of Thursday games
- Not a good day if you were below the line or Indiana St (who is watching). Every team above the line won a Q1 or Q2 game and Dayton losing in the A-10 resulted in a spot being taken away from the field. I suspect teams like Pitt and Providence who had Q1 wins were hoping for more losing above the line.
- There was some teams below the line that did get big wins though yesterday- Providence, Pitt with Q1's and A&M with Q2
- As noted above I'm not a fan of New Mexico's resume as others, but getting a Q1 win yesterday against Boise strengthen
- With the success of all the teams does Seton Hall now move down back to the bubble line.

(out of 54 entering Friday)
Mississippi St 52 (Q2 win over LSU) (Locked?)
Virginia 51 (Q2 win over BC) (Locked?)
St John's 48 (Q2 Win over Seton Hall)
Colorado 46 (Q2 Win vs Utah)
Indiana St 39 (Watching)
New Mexico 25 (Q1 Win vs Boise)
----------
Texas A&M 25 (Q2 Win vs Ole Miss)
Villanova 7 (Q1 Loss) - OUT
Pitt 4 (Q1 Win over Wake)
Kansas St 4 (Q1 loss 7:00) - OUT
Wake 3 (Q1 loss to Pitt) - OUT
Providence 3 (Q1 Win Creighton at 7:00)
Cincy 2 (Q1 Loss at 9:30) - OUT
 
Bid Stealers Still Alive
ACC - Pitt* and NC St (Semi's)
Big East - Providence* (Semi's)
Big Ten - Indiana and Ohio St (Quarter Finals)
Pac-12 - Oregon, Colorado* (Semi's)
MWC - New Mexico*
SEC - Texas A&M*
* These teams are all on the bubble line.

AAC - If Florida Atlantic does not win
 
I was just looking at St John’s resume. It sucks. Nice win over Creighton and they had close losses to good teams. That’s it. They didn’t get crushed against good teams like we did but just like we don’t deserve to get in, neither do they. They beat Nova twice, we beat Pitt twice. They beat Seton Hall and Providence once, we beat NC State twice and Oregon. I don’t care what Net says, their resume blows too, keep Restaurant Rick out!
 
Here's my Line Entering Today - I don't see anybody else having a chance to miss or get in as an at-large. Some teams like Miss St seem secure, but with so many teams around the line still alive and with good results yesterday, I can't call anybody secure.

(7 spots for 11 teams) I have yet to sort out the in's and out's.

Florida Atlantic
Miss St
Virginia
St. John's
Seton Hall
Colorado
Indiana St
New Mexico
Texas A&M
Pitt
Providence
 
I was just looking at St John’s resume. It sucks. Nice win over Creighton and they had close losses to good teams. That’s it. They didn’t get crushed against good teams like we did but just like we don’t deserve to get in, neither do they. They beat Nova twice, we beat Pitt twice. They beat Seton Hall and Providence once, we beat NC State twice and Oregon. I don’t care what Net says, their resume blows too, keep Restaurant Rick out!

There is nothing really bad in it except that Michigan loss. Nothing really stands out either. And I don't select teams purely on NET, nor does the committee IMO.

Their resume is better than Syracuse though, independent of NET. Both teams have 3 Q1 wins (and quality wise they are comparable) St John's are 10-11 in Q1+Q2 games. Syracuse is 7-11. That gives them the clear edge.

But that's not enough to lock them in either. In my list of 7 teams for 11 spots, I have a very hard time saying they are clearly above anybody on that list -- you can argue they are as good as some. Its tight.
 
Indiana St is going to get left out.

I'm leaning that way.
Too many P6 teams did "good stuff" around them this week and still may add on today. And they are the ones that tend to get the benefit of the doubt.
 
Last edited:
I won't spend much time on this scenario, because its fantasy -- I'll just make a general comment - if Syracuse had beat NC St and Duke it would very likely not have been enough.

That is because the bubble has played quite strong this week so far.
Not one bad loss amongst the entire group -- and a number of quality wins yesterday.
 
Gotta make room for some 16-14 P-6 team that will lose to East Podunk State in their first game.

Usually that is the way. I have always been pro little guy over middle of the pack conference team. But that is not the way they pick em. That is where my misses have tended to be.

Although that one team that got in the 2016 Tournament over some mid-majors that had arguably deserving resumes, seemed to do pretty well.
 

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