Monday, March 07, 2011

Postseason Tournament Predictions IV

Big East
Preseason Predicted Champ- Villanova
Regular Season Champ- Pittsburgh
Predicted Postseason Champ- Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh won the tough Big East by a game over Notre Dame with both those teams looking like the class of the Big East field. Notre Dame did win at Pitt where no one ever wins but Pittsburgh has seemingly owned the Big East tournament the last several years and should do it again. Right now, ten Big East teams appear to be locks as Cincinnati has overcome their poor non-conference slate to win 11 Big East games. Still their seed should be lower then some teams that finished below them in the Big East standings. Marquette has no bad losses but so many close losses to really great teams. Two wins should lock them into the field and one should be enough as well but if they lose to Providence in the first round of the Big East tournament then they will likely be a one seed in the NIT.


Big 12
Preseason Predicted Champ- Kansas
Regular Season Champ- Kansas
Predicted Postseason Champ- Kansas

Kansas won the Big 12 regular season title again and is well on their way to a one seed in the NCAAs. They will get a one seed with one win in the Big 12 tournament. Texas, Texas A&M, Missouri, and Kansas St. are all locked int the field while Colorado, Nebraska, Baylor, and possibly Oklahoma St. are all on the bubble. Nebraska vs Oklahoma St. is an elimination game while the winner almost certainly has to beat Kansas. Oklahoma St. because of their 6-10 Big 12 record and Nebraska because of their 7-9 Big 12 record and poor OOC SOS. Colorado probably needs to at least reach the semis since they have an awful OOC resume and bubble teams with an awful SOS have been left out in recent years (Virginia Tech last year). Baylor also needs to beat Texas and reach the semis as their computer numbers and Big 12 record are poor as well.


A-10
Preseason Predicted Champ- Temple
Regular Season Champ- Xavier
Predicted Postseason Champ- Xavier

Xavier and Temple were the class of the A-10 all season long. Xavier went 15-1 in the A-10 and did not lose to any team that qualified for the A-10 tournament. They also beat Temple in their only head-to-head meeting and have won nine straight including a win at Georgia. Richmond is also looking good for the NCAAs but might want to win one A-10 game to be safe. Everyone else including Duquesne and Dayton need to win the auto bid.


C-USA
Preseason Predicted Champ- Memphis
Regular Season Champ- UAB
Predicted Postseason Champ- UTEP

C-USA has quite a few teams in the RPI top 50 so it makes sense to think C-USA deserves more than one at-large team. However, C-USA this year reminds me of as a slightly worse version of the 2006 MVC which got four teams into the tournament although Wichita St. was the only single digit (7) seed. UAB could get an at-large selection since they were the outright C-USA champions but they don’t really have much of a profile otherwise. Memphis did win at Gonzaga but lost all their big out of conference games by double digits (Georgetown, at Tennessee, and at Kansas). However they did well against the top 50 RPI C-USA teams and while the committee will discount that, it will still count for something. UTEP is the pick for tournament champion since they are hosting the tournament and would most likely be a 12 or 13 seed and may be a bid stealer (they may take a bid that otherwise would go to UAB or Memphis)


Big West
Preseason Predicted Champ- UCSB
Regular Season Champ- Long Beach St.
Predicted Postseason Champ- Long Beach St.

Long Beach St. only went 6-8 against non-conference D1 teams but it was against the 5th most difficult non-conference schedule. That prepared them for conference play were they went 14-2 against the Big West and won the conference by four games. Both losses were on the road and Long Beach has won ten in a row since the setbacks. Look for them to be a 15 seed while if anyone else wins they would be in a First Four game.


Southland
Preseason Predicted Champ- Texas St.
Regular Season Champ- McNeese St.
Predicted Postseason Champ- Northwestern St.

Really any of the eight teams that qualified for the postseason tournament can win. There is only a three game difference between the top seed, McNeese St., and the last seed, Nicholls St. Northwestern St. is the pick because they won three of four to end the season and the lost was by a bucket at Nicholls St. The winner is likely going to be in headed to Dayton for a First Four game.


SWAC
Preseason Predicted Champ- Jackson St.
Regular Season Champ- Texas Southern
Predicted Postseason Champ- Texas Southern

Texas Southern won the regular season title by four games and only lost twice both on the road. They should dominate this postseason tournament but are destined for one of the play-in games.

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