Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Knee Jerk to the field

Well now that the dust has settled, a take on what the committee did well, and did not.

Top Seeds
Kentucky and Syracuse were the obvious top choices for the top line, joined this weekend by North Carolina and Michigan State. The placement of Kentucky in the South was a minor surprise. Sure, St. Louis is closer to Lexington than Atlanta is, but the Wildcats are a natural fit for the South region. This placement forced North Carolina(3rd on the seed list) to go to St. Louis, rather than the Spartans. On the second line, Kansas stayed in the Midwest region, and Missouri, 8th overall and the lowest of the 2 seeds, was put in with the weakest #1 Michigan State(and the Tigers had 30 wins overall).

The Bubble
The lack of bid poachers(until last weekend) meant that more mediocre resumes made it in. Like South Florida, who played rather badly vs. the Big East establishment. The most questionable inclusion was that of Iona, who made it in despite losing in the Metro Atlantic semifinals. By far the most controversial exclusion was that of Washington. The Huskies won the Pacific-12 regular season title outright, but consecutive losses(the last to Oregon State by 2 in the Pacific-12 tournament) combined with bad OOC numbers and a poorer overall showing by the rest of the conference, left the Huskies with an apparent unwanted first. As in being the first BCS 6 outright regular season champion to not get an at-large. Also missing out was Drexel who was hurt by the Colonial's unbalanced slate, as well as the Dragons' own unimpressive ooc fixture list. For the record, Oral Roberts was the NCAA's own last team left out, meaning that the good folks down in Olean, NY will be at the receiving end of some very angry F U notes from Tulsa. Miami(FL), Nevada, Mississippi State and Seton Hall were also left behind.

Questionable placements
Apart from the having the awkward situation of having North Carolina in the Midwest(which allows the ACC to complete the "Completing the Top seed rounds"), the biggest beef could be Ohio State's placement in Pittsburgh. With the real possibility of facing a well-supported West Virginia in the 3rd round. Seed wise, I'm sure Creighton and Murray State are well underseeded. Overseeds, Xavier as a 10 looks primed for an easy defeat at the hands of Notre Dame.

My personal performance
After missing three last year, I missed out on only Iona, having Drexel in instead. In seeding, 52 of 67 were within +/-1 seed, with 30 exactas. I was also able to correctly guess 5 games(Mississippi Valley State vs. Western Kentucky; MVSU/WKU vs. Kentucky; Indiana vs. New Mexico State; New Mexico vs. Long Beach State(albeit with incorrect seeds); and Duke vs. Lehigh).

Well tomorrow, I'll be making out my predictions on how the actual games will turn out. So til then, tootaloo.

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