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Posts Tagged ‘Bracket Bits’

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…

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…

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…

Bracket Bits: Big East teams building strong NETs

December 27, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015Members of the Big East are building some strong NETs.

How strong have Big East teams been to this point?  Take a look at some of these numbers – via Warren Nolan

Nine of the Big East’s ten teams currently rank in the Top 55 of the NCAA’s NET Rankings (through Thursday, December 26) – led by the surprising Butler Bulldogs at No. 3.  Four of BU’s ten wins are currently in Quadrant 1 – as is their only loss (Baylor by a single point).

Here’s where the other teams rank … Villanova (21), Creighton (24), Georgetown (29), Seton Hall (34), DePaul (36), St. John’s (47), Marquette (50), Xavier (52).  Oddly, its Providence, a sneaky preseason pick to win the league, which has struggled – currently ranked 122. Read more…

Bracket Bits: Trouble brewing for North Carolina?

December 17, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015With the latest bracket posted, let’s look between the seed lines and ask a couple of questions …

Could there be trouble brewing for North Carolina?
The Tar Heels have lost three straight and four of five.  Mind you, the list of opponents during that stretch has been impressive: Michigan, Oregon, Ohio State, and Virginia – so a loss or two could have been expected.  Four is a slightly different story – especially given the lopsided result to Ohio State in Chapel Hill.

Then came the news that freshman sensation Cole Anthony is out indefinitely with an injury – followed by Sunday’s loss at home to Wofford.

What’s next, you ask? The Heels travel cross-country to to play Gonzaga tomorrow night at The Kennel.  A loss would drop UNC to 6-5 and likely out of our pre-Christmas bracket projection (planned for Christmas Eve).  Even if you weren’t that high on the Heels coming into the season, that news is still a bit shocking. Read more…

Bracket Bits: Confidence Index for Sweet 16

March 27, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015After a pair of opening weekend NCAA tournament games, we’re down to the Sweet 16.  Hopefully, you have several of the teams below among your remaining bracket picks.  Now the question becomes: What is your confidence level for each of the teams below moving forward in terms of reaching the Final Four and/or winning the 2019 National Championship?

Upcoming variable include the health of Kentucky’s P.J. Washington, along with your takes on the sustainability of hot-shooting teams like Auburn.  Anyway, here’s my Confidence Index for the Sweet 16 …

Read more…

Bracket Bits: Five takeaways from the Round of 64

March 23, 2019 Leave a comment

Dave2015The first two days of this year’s NCAA tournament are behind us.  And while we didn’t have an incredible buzzer-beater, we still had plenty of drama.  Here are five quick takeaways from Thursday and Friday …

High seeds advanced … Other than No. 13 seed UC-Irvine’s upset of Kansas State (which really wasn’t that big of an upset), the top of the bracket remains chalky.  Duke, Virginia, North Carolina, and Gonzaga all moved on with relative ease, even though their opening halves created a little angst in Durham, Chapel Hill, and Charlottesville.   In all, every No. 2 and No. 3 seed also reached the Round of 32.

12-5 Upsets returned … A year removed from stability in the traditionally unpredictable 12-5 matchups, No. 12 seed Liberty ousted No. 5 seed Mississippi State and No. 12 seed Oregon dumped No. 5 seed Wisconsin.  Neither the Bulldogs nor the Badgers were playing their best basketball in March, so it’s not overly surprising.   And with UC-Irvine taking down Kansas State, Oregon will be favored to reach the Sweet 16. Read more…