Monday, February 18, 2008

2008 NCAA Projections - February 18, 2008

Last week, the state of North Carolina had two #1 seeds. This week, it’s the state of Tennessee who carries that distinction. Why? Because Duke lost to Wake Forest, who is now 6-5 in the ACC with a signature win. Also, Tennessee has 9 wins (1st nationally) against the RPI Top 50. The Volunteers’ tussle at Memphis will go a long way in determining at least one #1 seed.

Meanwhile, Michigan State and Georgetown have enjoyed better weeks. In two games, the Spartans (who I thought would win both games on the road this week) played exactly one decent half this week in their soon-to-be-forgotten visit to the state of Indiana. As for Georgetown, while it’s not a case of Hoya Suxa (i.e. The Esherick Era), optimism has quieted in the nation’s capital. A squeaker at home against a decidedly-weaker team aided by a widely-criticized call followed by a thumping at the hands of Syracuse in the Carrier Dome will do that.

Moving to the last four teams in, St. Joseph’s and Baylor have little room for error. With respect to UMass, they are in right now because of their 4-4 record against the RPI Top 50 and little more than that. Based on the eye test (i.e. how they play), Houston (0-4 vs. RPI Top 50) gained the nod over the likes of Ohio State (who exactly have they beaten and then losing to Michigan?), Dayton (solid resume, but a different team since the Chris Wright injury) and Florida (losing to LSU at home and then falling to Vanderbilt).

Among our projected teams that are not currently in first place by a full game or more, here are some quick hitters …

North Carolina – The decision was made before the Duke loss. The Blue Devils being exposed by Wake Forest freshman guard Jeff Teague may have very well provided the ‘blueprint’ (yes, the word is overused, but until I hear a better word, please accept my apologies) to other ACC teams, but UNC with Lawson wins the ACC Tournament in March.

New Mexico State – Utah State has started to crumble, Nevada is rising from the ashes and Boise State gets no love. Of course, none of those teams get to play their conference tournament at home. Additionally, New Mexico State (who does) is 6-2 with Herb Pope and recorded double-digit wins against Utah State and Boise State since his arrival.

Sam Houston State & South Alabama – It’s all about Thursday night. Both have return matches against the first-place teams in their divisions whom they beat in Round 1 – Stephen F. Austin and Western Kentucky, respectively.

Hampton – The Pirates were impressive in non-conference play and are now getting over a rough patch. Not to mention, Morgan State finally lost again in MEAC action.

That’s all for now. If you have any questions, comments, or just wish to send a shout, shoot me a line at phashemi@gmail.com.

The Seedings
1: Memphis (C-USA), Kansas (Big XII), North Carolina (ACC), Tennessee (SEC)
2: Duke, UCLA (PAC-10), Texas, Xavier (A-10)
3: Stanford, UConn, Georgetown (Big East), Purdue (Big Ten)
4: Louisville, Wisconsin, Butler, Washington State
5: Kansas State, Indiana, Drake (MVC), Michigan State
6: Clemson, Notre Dame, Marquette, St. Mary’s
7: Arizona, Vanderbilt, USC, Texas A&M
8: Pittsburgh, Gonzaga (WCC), Mississippi State, Maryland
9: Arkansas, BYU, Rhode Island, Oklahoma
10: Arizona State, Kentucky, Kent State (MAC), Syracuse
11: Wake Forest, West Virginia, St. Joseph’s, UNLV (MWC)
12: Baylor, South Alabama (Sun Belt), UMass, Houston
13: Davidson (Southern), Virginia Commonwealth (Colonial), Oral Roberts (Summit), Siena (Metro Atlantic)
14: Cornell (Ivy), Sam Houston State (Southland), Cal State Fullerton (Big West), New Mexico State (WAC)
15: Belmont (Atlantic Sun), UM-Baltimore County (America East), Winthrop (Big South), American (Patriot)
16: Hampton (MEAC), Austin Peay (Ohio Valley), Portland State (Big Sky), Robert Morris (Northeast), Alabama State (SWAC)

Last Four In: St. Joseph’s, Baylor, UMass, Houston
Last Four Out: Ohio State, Dayton, Florida, Miami-FL
Next Four Out: Oregon, Western Kentucky, California, Southern Illinois

IN: Arizona State, Wake Forest, West Virginia, St. Joseph’s, Houston, Virginia Commonwealth, Winthrop, Belmont, Robert Morris
OUT: Florida, Dayton, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Illinois State, George Mason, UNC-Asheville, East Tennessee State, Sacred Heart

Seeding Summary (Multi-Bid Conferences Only in Order of Percentage)
Pac-10: 6/10
Big East: 8/16
Big XII: 6/12
ACC: 5/12
SEC: 5/12
Big Ten: 4/11
A-10: 4/14
West Coast: 2/8
Mountain West: 2/9
Conference USA: 2/12

10 comments:

Clement said...

Was an up-and-down week for many college basketball fans.

Syracuse potentially places a loss on their record that might not be forgiven (@ South Florida) and then wins at home over Georgetown in impressive fashion.

Of course, fat lot of good it did last year.

VCU plays a great game on ESPN2, but ODU outdoes them. However, a ref swallowing his whistle MAY have decided the game (or at least OT). Pathetic non-call, but ODU played well enough to earn the W.

Three questions:
1) Do you think Memphis is going undefeated?
2) If Duke/UNC were to split the regular-season and NEITHER win the ACC Tournament: who has the better resume (as of today) to earn the #1 seed in the East?
3) Could you foresee a scenario if Tennessee wins out them becoming the #1 overall seed?

Anonymous said...

Xavier a 2 and UCONN a 3? HOW????

Clement said...

29% FG and 2-20 from the 3-point line.

Cuse is DONE this season.

It's not just because Rautins blew his knee out for Team Canada (fortunately, he's rehabbing to play this summer...cut him from Cuse) or the injury to Devendorf (aka K-Fed II).

Boheim has too young a team and has lost the touch. The win vs. Georgetown was a fluke.

Fire Boheim. It's time for a change.

And not to his assistants.

Cuse = DONE!

Paymon said...

Thanks to all for the questions ...

1) I don't think Memphis is going undefeated, though they should still be primed for a #1 seed. The FTs will bite them, and even if they don't, a good ball-handling team with comparable versatility like Tennessee might.

2) In the circumstance provided (UNC/Duke split and neither make the ACC Final), it's a tough call, but I'd lean towards the Blue Devils. Duke's best wins are at home against Wisconsin and on a neutral floor against Marquette. UNC doesn't have a win of comparable strength (@ Clemson is tops). Additionally, Duke is 7-1 against the RPI Top 50 compared to UNC being 6-2.

3) Yes! If Tennessee wins out, they should be the #1 overall seed. They will have a 16-game win streak and non-conference wins @ Memphis, Xavier and Gonzaga. As a result, they will likely lead the nation in wins against the RPI Top 50.

4) On Xavier as a 2, why not? They defeated Indiana and Kent State on a neutral floor and obliterated a fully loaded Kansas State team. In conference, they have amassed 4 wins against the RPI top 53, two of which are on the road. Though Stanford and Georgetown get plenty of love as the last #2 seed, neither have the overall victories or non-conference schedule (or wins for that matter) that Xavier has.

5) As for UConn, there may be a stronger argument against a #3 seed. This was awarded for a meaty 9-game winning streak that has included 5 wins against the RPI Top 24, highlighted by a road win at Assembly Hall. That win at Syracuse wasn't too bad either. Additionally, the Huskies have only 1 bad loss (vs. Providence).

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