Monday, March 22, 2010

Sweet 16

Five of the eight remaining match ups in our national championship bracket will pit a Big 6 conference against a non-Big 6 conference. This will keep me very interested.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Day One Recap

First, here is an actual bracket of results.

Second, yesterday yielded the most single day double-digit seed winners in ages (1991). Further, 8 non-BCS teams advanced, fully half of the games yesterday.

There were lots of great moments, but the most shocking to me was seeing Ohio hand a 97-spot on Georgetown. Wow.

Old Dominion's win was not surprising. They have been solid all season. Murray State has been, too, but has always come up short against top competition. Not yesterday.

Day Two awaits.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Bracket Reaction

There is not too much to pick at here. I would grade this a B+ job by this committee. I had Virginia Tech IN over Florida, but those last couple of slots were so close. That's the only team that I missed. So, 64/65 teams, 31 seeded exactly, and 58 within one seed line of actual. Pretty darned close.

There are a couple of seeds that are puzzling.

1. Putting Duke ahead of Syracuse on the S-Curve is nearly indefensible. I get that Duke won both the ACC regular season and tourney. But, that's only enough to beat out West Virginia (and that's even debatable), not Syracuse. Simply look at all the numbers that matter. The Orange have a better profile.

Duke beat ONE top 25 RPI team. Syracuse beat five. Syracuse was 8-1 in true road games, while Duke was 5-5. OOC wins are comparable, but I would take Cuse's wins over Cal, Cornell, Marquette, Memphis, Oakland, Florida, and North Carolina (5 NCAA teams) over Duke's wins over Gonzaga, Arizona State, UConn, Tulsa, Charlotte, and St. John's (1 NCAA team). Again, the Orange clearly have a better profile. Now, again, Duke did win both the ACC regular season and tourney titles.

That makes this team an even bigger puzzler...

2. Temple. I nearly put them at a 2 seed! I thought they were easily a 3 at worst and they land at 5. That's particularly difficult to understand given that the reasoning for Duke over Cuse was "regular season and conference champs." Temple did that, too, in the #7 RPI league. The Owls were #8 RPI; beat Villanova, Siena, Virginia Tech, and Seton Hall out of conference; piled up 12 road wins; had a better SOS than Ohio State, New Mexico, and Purdue; had no sub-100 losses (worst loss at @#82 RPI St. John's); won 10 straight to close the season.

And, that garnered only a 5 seed? Temple earned a protected seed. Period.

Those are the only two major issues to me. Otherwise, I thought this committee did a very good job. They handled the Bubble extremely well. Anyone who is not IN knows exactly why they are at home.

And that is the mark of a good committee.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Final Projection

Final bracket is up. It's a crap shoot for those last 4 or 5 slots. I am taking Virginia Tech, Minnesota, Utah State, and UTEP in my last four. I will not be shocked to see Illinois, Mississippi State, Florida or Seton Hall show up. Even Ole Miss or Rhode Island would not be total stunners. And, I assure you, Cal is not resting easy, either.

Duke and West Virginia are very close for the final #1 seed. I am sticking with Duke because they won both the regular season and tourney titles. They likely will be out West together.

Lockbox has been updated.

SCKySSiP Complete!

We have a few contingencies that could change things, but our work is done. Here is the SCKySSiP mock committee's bracket. Remember, this committee replicated the selection process. We in no way tried to "guess" what the committee will do. Huge difference.

If Duke loses today, West Virginia gets the West #1. If Duke wins, they keep it. New Mexico State knocked out Illinois last night.

Last Four IN: Minnesota, Utah State, UTEP, Virginia Tech

Next Five OUT: Illinois, Florida, Mississippi State, Rhode Island, Seton Hall.

VA Tech gets the axe if Miss State beats Kentucky today.

The mock committee worked from 3.30pm until nearly midnight last night. Great fun and a lot of learning took place. The most important lesson is realizing that those last few teams are like picking the prettiest skunk. Anyone who does this will find themselves seeing far less injustice when the bracket comes out. One could take any of our "next five out" and replace any our of our "last few in" and I would not bat an eye.

The Lockbox has been updated. My final projection will be up this afternoon sometime.

The One Stop is up to date as well.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


The bracket has been slightly tweaked. Mostly some seed jostling (K-State up to 2, New Mexico down to 3, plus a few others).

One Stop is up to date. Huge day, of course.

The Lockbox has been adjusted a bit, too.

It's SCKySSiP day, so we'll be hard at work from 3 pm forward today deep into the night. I'll post updates really late tonight or early in the morning. Project Mockingbird has a sister committee in Omaha that is meeting today, too. It will be interesting to compare results of replicating the process.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Friday Updates

The bracket has been updated. EDIT: Again at 6.20PM CT. Washington IN, Mississippi OUT. I have not been a fan of the Rebels all season. They simply do not look like a tourney team to me and their numbers just are not that great. Again, I do live in SEC country, so maybe I have seen them too many times compared to SD State or Washington. And, while the Huskies are deeply flawed, if they beating Stanford and making the Pac 10 final is going to help them versus the likes of Ole Miss, Memphis, UAB, UConn, Cincy, etc. But, they must first do that tonight.

Lockbox has been adjusted a bit. Wake and Missouri are likely IN, but they are backing in. They are not exactly going to strike fear into the hearts of their first-round opponents.

One Stop is up to date (and I corrected the SoCon bracket) and will again be updated numerous times throughout the day. There are tons of important games for Bubble teams today and there will be seismic activity in the Bubble landscape this afternoon and evening. Those last 2-3 slots could look totally different when the day is done.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bracket Update

EDIT: Lockbox update at 2.30 CT. Illinois IN, Memphis OUT. Houston damaged Memphis badly today. I thought the Tigers needed to make the CUSA final to harbor real hopes come Sunday. We'll see how the rest of the Bubble does, though.

Bracket has been updated.

One Stop Shop will be updated frequently once games get going today.

The SCKySSiP (South Central Kentucky Selection Simulation Project--ridiculously long name used for effect) is in full swing. We have voted 29 teams IN at this point.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Lockbox Update

Lockbox has been updated. I think the Bubble is down to six slots and I took Virginia Tech, San Diego State, Georgia Tech, Memphis, Rhode Island, and Mississippi over Arizona State, Washington, UAB, Seton Hall, South Florida, Illinois, and Dayton along with some other fringe teams.

Still plenty of hoops for this to look much different come Sunday. Georgia Tech badly needs a win. Illinois could jump in with a victory over Wiscy. Florida could slide back onto the Bubble if they lose their first SEC game. There are plenty of others playing for their lives (Ole Miss, Dayton, Miss State...).

The One Stop is being updated multiple times per day. Bracket update later tonight or tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

One Stop Complete

The One Stop now has all 30 brackets full.

Bracket and Lockbox tweaking will occur as warranted.

Monday, March 08, 2010

The No-Doubt Panthers

Northern Iowa has been the best Valley team all season. Nothing in the conference tourney remotely challenged that fact. UNI is IN.

Lockbox update: South Florida IN, Illinois OUT.

I tweaked today's bracket with USF and I also moved Ohio State up to a 2 and Kansas State down to a 3.

One Stop is current and I'll fill in all the remaining tourney brackets today.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Racers, Eagles, and Bucs (Oh, my!)

Three more bids: Murray State (OVC), Winthrop (Big South), East Tennessee State (A-Sun). Congrats to all!

New bracket is up. I cannot remember putting a more flawed team in than Illinois. At the bottom, I think we are back up to eight slots up for grabs (see updated Lockbox). I took Virginia Tech, Notre Dame, St. Mary's, Rhode Island, Georgia Tech, San Diego State, Mississippi, and Illinois over a set of teams that included Dayton, Memphis, Charlotte, Seton Hall, Mississippi State, South Florida, Washington, Arizona State, and Wichita State. I know that "full body of work" is the mantra, but I feel that monster finishes could push a number of these into the bracket over the dregs at the bottom.

The One Stop is also up-to-date. The Valley crowns a champ today and Bubble Nation will be flying UNI's flag. Wichita State is a worthy opponent. Should be a good one.

Illinois has a huge game at home vs Wisconsin today as well.

Lockbox has been updated, too.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Big Red Bid

UPDATE: 3:30 CT. Louisville moves off the Bubble to projected IN. It would take a weird set of circumstances to keep them out. I'll likely upgrade them further after the full bracket update.

Lockbox has been updated.
Cornell is IN. They clinched the Ivy last night. The One Stop shows this and is up to date.

Mercer and East Tennessee State will tangle for the honor to be the unexpected A-Sun representative in the bracket. Murray State and Morehead State will engage in what should be an epic battle for the OVC bid. I follow the OVC pretty closely, and this should be a great game. Winthrop and Coastal Carolina fight for the Big South's Golden Ticket.

I'll update the Lockbox at day's end to reflect auto qualifiers and any At-Large adjustments that need to be made.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Gaining Steam

Lockbox is updated. UAB in, Dayton out. The Bubble is still at 8, I think.

One Stop is updated through last night. Action is picking up with games in the A-Sun, Colonial, Horizon, MAAC, Valley, OVC, SoCon and WCC today and tonight.

To save a monumental weekend forecast, I'll update daily this weekend as tourney results flow in.

New full bracket will be up later (probably much later) tonight.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

One Stop Action, Lockbox

Sorry for the sparseness this week, but life happens.

One Stop is starting to fill up...and that is like hearing the the ice cream truck in your neighborhood. Something fun and sweet is just around the bend. In fact, some kids already have started eating their ice cream (I like OVC Crunch, personally).

Lockbox is updated. Hello, SD State! Bubble is down to 8 slots by my estimation. People will quibble with Rhode Island as "projected in," but a win at UMass and a first-round A-10 win will make it tough to leave them out. That qualifies as "win games they should." Now, a loss at UMass or in their first round games changes things, but as of now, it's TCB, and URI is likely IN.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Lockbox/One Stop Updates

Lockbox is updated. Bottom 4 or 5 are very dicey. Day-to-day, really.

One Stop is updated with active conference tourney games.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Bracket Delay

I'm snowed under today. Bracket will have to come tomorrow or Wed.