A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Monday, March 12, 2007

MM: Worst Brackets Ever

Or at least that I can remember. Truly the selection and seeding was dreadful this year, with the ACC apparently having bought off the selection committe, while the Big East pissed them off something fierce. I know there are always questionable calls, and I know that seeding the tournament is one of the trickiest bits of sports logistics out there, but Arkansas in and Syracuse out? Please. But I get ahead of myself. Let us begin at the top and work our way down.

#1 Seeds: Ohio State, Kansas, Florida and North Carolina.
OSU, UK and UF are no brainers. I don't have a problem with them at all. But North Carolina? North Carolina beat one top 10 team all year, Ohio State with an injured Greg Odom at home, and has three pretty decent road wins: Tennessee, Duke and Boston College. They are the class of the ACC, and deserve a #2 seed, but Georgetown and UCLA are both more deserving.

But North Carolina isn't a horrible #1 seed. I can live with it. BUT, how does the team that leaked into their #1 seed get to play their first and second round games 30 miles away from their campus?!?! Those two games are home games for North Carolina, and that is a HUGE edge. How does that work?

#2 Seeds: Georgetown, UCLA, Wisconsin, and Memphis.
I have no real issues with the #2s. Except that NC should be one of them.

#3 Seeds: Oregon, Washington State, Texas A&M and Pittsburgh
I also have no real issue with these, either.

#4 Seeds: Texas, Virginia, Maryland, and Southern Illinois
Two ACC teams? What do the ACC Athletic Directors have on the selection committee? Maryland has precisely one good road win, at Duke, and they beat North Carolina by 2 at home. They lost to Miami (12-19) in the first round of the ACC tourney. Virginia's resume is equally as bad. They have one good road win, at Maryland, they didn't beat North Carolina, and they ended the year losing to Wake Forest (15-16) and N.C. State (18-15). And these are two of the top 16 teams in the country?

#5 Seeds: Butler, Virginia Tech, Tennessee, USC
These are ok, except that Virginia Tech is a 6 or 7 seed, tops. No way they are one of the 20 best teams in the country. What did the ACC do to get this kind of preferential treatment?

#6 Seeds: Notre Dame, Duke, Vanderbilt, Louisville.
ND and Louisville should both be 4 or 5 seeds. Louisville could make a case for being a 3. Vanderbilt is about right. Duke should be about a 10. Seeding them even with Notre Dame and Louisville is an absolute travesty. Ridiculous. Both teams are ranked higher Duke. Both teams went deeper in their conference tourney than Duke did. Duke finished the year losing three straight (so much for recent events counting for more in the selection committee's seedings). Duke has NO good road wins. They were a mediocre 8-8 in the ACC. Louisville does get to play in Lexington for the first two rounds, so perhaps that's why they were seeded 6, but I'm not sure that's a fair trade off. And I know there's no way Duke is a 6.

#7 Seeds: Nevada, Boston College, UNLV, Indiana
More ACC favoritism. BC beat almost nobody this year, and their best road win is a one point victory over Florida State. The other three I'm ok with, though Nevada got a bit screwed. They deserved a 5, or at least a 6.

#8 Seeds: BYU, Kentucky, Arizona, and Marquette
Did the Big East send a bunch of peanut-based candies to the selection committe member with nut allergies? Good lord the selection committee seems to hate the Big East. Marquette finished with wins two wins over Pittsburgh, a win vs. Louisville (at Louisville), and AT Duke. They have a better record, and resume, than at least six teams seeded ahead of them. For this they get an 8 seed, and the opportunity to play North Carolina, IN North Carolina, if they beat Michigan State in the first round. The Warriors... er... Golden Eagles got screwed. Kentucky and Arizona deserved 9s or 10s, but they're Kentucky and Arizona, so they get an extra seed or two.

#9 Seeds: Xavier, Villanova, Purdue, and Michigan State
Purdue is too high, but otherwise I'm ok with these. The Big 10 definitely panders better than the Big East, but they got nothing on the ACC when it comes to selection committee favoritism.

#10 Seeds: Gonzaga, Georgia Tech, Texas Tech, Creighton
I'm not sure any of these teams should've made the tourney, though the Zags did beat North Carolina and Texas way back at the start of the year, which might be enough. But in light of teams like Drexel and Syracuse getting bumped from the field, how are Georgia Tech and Texas Tech in? Actually, Creighton deserves to be here, maybe even higher.

#11 Seeds: VCU, Winthrop, George Washington, and Stanford
I'm good with all of these, actually. Starting to get into the automatic bid categories now, so there should be less controversy.

#12 Seeds: Illinois, Old Dominion, Arkansas, Long Beach State
Two of the worst selections ever. Neither Illinois or, the weaker division of the SEC. No team with a losing record in conference play should be in the field unless they win their conference tournament. They beat NOBODY this year. Nobody. Worst at-large pick I can remember. Illinois is a little better, but not a lot. They at least went 9-7 in conference. But they also beat absolutely nobody.

#13-#16 Seeds: There guys are all play-ins via conference tourneys. We'll call 'em good.

Left Out Screw Jobs: Syracuse, Drexel, Missouri State and Air Force.
Syracuse beat Georgetown, Marquette and Villanova. They were 10-6 in the Big East, a better record than Villanova, who is in the tournament. Syracuse is far more deserving than either Arkansas or Illinois. Drexel won AT Villanova and AT Syracuse and finished 23-8. Missouri State beat Wisconsin and finished 12-6 in the tough Missouri Valley Conference. Air Force beat Texas Tech, UNLV and Stanford (all in the tourney) but finished weak, losing their last four games. They were still more deserving than Arkansas or Illinois, though. All four of these teams were far more deserving.

For more pithy analysis, go here. Or wait for my next post.
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?