Monday, March 17, 2008

Committee Comes Through

All things considered, this committee did a very good job. I need more time to say if they were as good as 2005's crew, but Tom O'Connor's group did a great job.

Honestly, who has a right to cry foul? Arizona State? NO. They played the #293 SOS. They weren't scheduling for a bid. They were scheduling for WINS. Illinois State? A team can't be as flawed as they were, lose by THIRTY in the conference title game and complain. Virginia Tech? Sorry, but the committee cannot ignore the first 80% of the season. No one got the shaft.

Now, the inclusion of Oregon over some of these teams can be debated, but not definitively. I had Illinois State in for Oregon, but Illinois State would have been the next team to get the axe. No quibbles from me on who got in.

There are some puzzlers in the seeding. It's amazing that Vanderbilt managed a four seed given their lack of good road wins. And, somehow, Oregon pulled a nine seed, while Temple, the red-hot A10 champ, only garnered a 12. Switching those two on the seed lines would be closer to the truth. Butler feels slightly underseeded as a 7 as does Indiana as an 8. Finally, Wisconsin should have been a two over Duke. Period.

But, these are fairly minor issues compared to last year and especially 2006 (a disaster).

I try not to pay attention to the talking heads too much, but I found the hypocrisy from ESPN's crew appalling. Most of them referenced the "eye test" or the "bald dome index," and advocated using common sense. I have just one question for those trumpeting such: how many times did they watch Drake or South Alabama? I think I know the answer for most of them. So, this "eye test business" is bull.

More bracket breakdown coming tomorrow.