Welcome to Bracketville

November 9, 2008 Comments off

Here at Bracketville, you’ll find insights and updates, seeding-curve rankings, forward-thinking predictions, and fan-interaction. We’ve had nine great seasons online and look forward to another adventure in 2019-20.  You can also look for Bracketology updates on NBCSports.com – College Basketball Talk.

2020 Updates:

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Categories: Current Updates

Bracketology: Baylor leads, Big Ten reigns

January 17, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015One bracket decision was easy today: Baylor as the No. 1 overall seed.  The Bears are 5-1 against Quadrant 1 teams, have a win at Kansas, and haven’t lost since dropping a close game to Washington in early November.

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Elsewhere, the Big Ten reigns, filling up the field with a dozen teams.  Much of that has to do with the strength and depth of the conference, with quality wins available almost every night and home teams rarely losing.  Another contributing factor is fewer contenders in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big 12, and even the Southeastern Conference (SEC).  Whether those trends continue remains to be seen.  Ultimately, the Big Ten is more likely to end up with nine or ten bids.

In a close call, Butler remains the final No. 1 seed, but loses its Midwest route to Kansas.  The Bulldogs depth of wins against teams in the Field was the difference.  But one could make an equally compelling and accurate case for San Diego State.

Bracket Bits: Evaluating No. 1 seed options beyond Baylor

January 16, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015Baylor will be the No. 1 overall seed when Friday’s bracket update arrives tomorrow at Bracketville.  That shouldn’t be a surprise.  The Bears held the pole position on Tuesday and beat Iowa State at home.

Beyond that, it gets a little more interesting. Because two of Tuesday’s No. 1 seeds have since lost: Duke at Clemson and Butler to Seton Hall.

Does that mean Duke and Butler automatically drop?  If the Seed List were a traditional poll, the most likely answer would be yes.  But before making a decision, let’s go beyond the names and single-game results and dive into the resumes of six other contenders. Read more…

Bracketology: Butler reaches top line

January 14, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015If you’re joining us following the end of college football, welcome back!  If you’re simply checking in, here’s the latest …

It’s been a monumental two-month journey for Butler.  Picked to finish near the bottom of the Big East standings, the Bulldogs have instead vaulted to an impressive 15-1 record, including nine wins against Quadrants 1 and 2 of the NCAA’s NET ratings.  If you’re into other analytical metrics, KenPom ranks Butler fourth, BPI fifth and SOR (Strength of Record) second as of this posting.

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Of course, challenges never end.  Butler next hosts Seton Hall at Hinkle Fieldhouse before embarking on a road swing through DePaul and Villanova.

As for the other No. 1 seeds, the Baylor Bandwagon is filling up quickly.  The Bears swept a pair of road games at Texas Tech and Kansas last week, vaulting them to the No. 1 overall seed in today’s bracket.  Gonzaga remains top Dawg in the West with Duke holding as the Beast of the East.

 

Bracketology: Kansas vaults to No. 1 overall seed

January 10, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015Anchored by its pole position on the NCAA’s NET ratings and its No. 1 overall schedule – the Kansas Jayhawks have passed Gonzaga on the Seed List to lead the latest Field of 68.  It was a strong week for KU, backed by a home victory over West Virginia.

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The middle of the bracket remains a mixed bag of profiles without much distinction among seed lines; that is common in early January.  One other quick note: the strength of the Big Ten brings with it added bids today.  The question becomes, how many of those teams ultimately survive the next two months?

Looking ahead, we could end up with another large group of bubble teams – even moving into late February.  There are a lot of similar profiles on the current at-large board and unless some of those teams separate, conference tournaments could end up as  elimination games.

Bracket Bits: The value of road wins

January 8, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015When the Selection Committee gathers in two months to select and seed teams for the 2020 NCAA tournament, road wins (and overall road performance) often serve as a separating factor when comparing Team Sheets.  Who did you beat?  And where did you beat them?

That’s not to suggest that home wins aren’t important or that the Committee ignores losses (home or road – or in high numbers), rather, it’s a reminder that true road wins are a bit like gold: hard to find but of great value.

With that caveat in place – and conference play now in full swing – we note a few of Tuesday’s victorious road warriors: Baylor (at Texas Tech), Kentucky (at Georgia), Villanova (at Creighton), Houston (at Temple), Providence (at Marquette) and Florida (at South Carolina).  If we ranked those, it might look like this: Villanova, Baylor, Kentucky, Providence, Houston, and Florida. Read more…

Quick Takes: Appreciating Butler, SDSU while unpacking Saturday’s takeaways

January 5, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015Before we walk through our bullet-point takeaways from the first full Saturday of college hoops in 2020, let’s take a moment to appreciate Butler and San Diego State.  Neither team was picked to win its conference, let alone be in contention for a protected seed on Selection Sunday.  Looking back, Butler was picked to finish eighth in the Big East and SDSU was slated second behind Utah State in the Mountain West.

This morning, both the Bulldogs and Aztecs hold Top 5 ratings in the NCAA’s NET metric. They are a combined 10-1 vs. Quad 1 teams with that single loss being a one-pointer by Butler against Baylor in Waco.  While the numbers will continue to evolve, only Butler, SDSU and Kansas have five wins vs. Quad 1 opponents as of this writing (per Warren Nolan).

The fact that Butler and San Diego State would be legitimate No. 1 seed contenders were today Selection Sunday is an incredible accomplishment – especially given preseason expectations. Read more…

Bracket Bits: Could the Big 10 reach double-digit bids?

January 4, 2020 Leave a comment

Dave2015Could the Big Ten reach double-digits bids in 2020?

It’s a fair question given that 11 teams currently rank in the Top 50 of the NET ratings and 12 teams sit within the Top 60.

Why do those stats matter?  It’s simple math – even for non-analytical equation minds like mine.  With the exception of Northwestern and Nebraska (at least for now), nearly every league game provides an opportunity to add a beneficial NET victory to one’s Team Sheet.  High ratings also tend to minimize the impact of losses – margins not included – provided those losses remain within acceptable limits (more on that below).  Read more…