Last Look at the Bubble

It’s hard to believe that the regular season is already over. It’s been a great ride so far and I never expected to be able to say that considering where State basketball was just one year ago. So let’s get to it and start with reviewing the last week of the regular season.

 

RPI TREND GRAPHS

UVA had a thrilling win over L’ville with a last second three to get the victory. They followed that game up by holding off ND down the stretch for a 2-0 week and 17-1 conference record for the year.

Duke lost in Blacksburg (looking ahead?) and then avenged the loss in Chapel Hill to secure the second seed in the ACCT.

UNC had an 0-2 week to drop into a four-way tie for third place.

Clemson went 1-1 with a win over FSU and then a loss at Syracuse.

Miami had a great week with a win in Chapel Hill and then a hard fought win over VT at home. They ended the regular season with a four-game winning streak and proved that they don’t belong with the other questionable teams on this graph.

FSU lost at Clemson then won over BC at home to squeak in with a 9-9 conference record.

L’ville picked a bad time to go 0-2 and we’ll dissect them a little later.

SYR ended the season with a home victory over Clemson to revive their fading NCAAT hopes. I’ll have more to say about the Orange during our bubble discussion.

VT beat Duke mid-week to hopefully secure an NCAAT bid. They ended the regular season with a hard fought loss at Miami. I gave up on VT several times this season and I think that they have proven me wrong.

I’m not sure what I would say if State had lost to L’ville on Saturday. But thankfully you won’t have to watch me back-peddle and say that 10-8 might not be good enough. I’m not ready to see State lose again, but at least I won’t worry about a NCAAT bid if they bow out of the ACCT too soon. If I’m right about State, then they’ll be the first team to move from a triple-digit RPI ranking at the start of the conference schedule to earn a NCAAT bid.

ND got Bonzie Colson back a full week before the ACCT. Now we have to figure out how much ND has to do in the ACCT to secure a NCAAT bid.

Let’s start with what “everyone else is saying” to go along with a few more tables before we start drilling down into specifics.

 

THE DANCE CARD

Through Sunday’s games

 

BRACKET MATRIX

 

FINAL ACC STANDINGS

IIRC, this is State’s best regular season finish since 2004 when State finished second (and then lost in the first round of the ACCT to eventual champion Maryland).

 

ACCT BRACKET

From Wikipedia

 

RPI SUMMARY TABLE

I ignored my fast and dirty definition of IN vs Bubble this week.

The first five teams are well clear of any bubble discussions. I’ve not spent any great amount of time studying seeding tendencies simply because it hasn’t been important to State to generate any interest for me. But I do know that ACCT performance has a much bigger effect on Bubble discussions than seeding ones.

FSU has a SOS that is among the worst in the nation, but they have enough quality wins to overcome that big negative. Their Top 25 and Top 50 wins far exceeds the minimums that we’ve discussed many times since the days of the Herbble.

Someone has got to work with Buzz to straighten out VT’s OOC schedule because it is even worse than FSU’s. Their resume is not as good as FSU’s, but four Top 25 wins has to be good enough.

State is 7-6 against teams in the Top 50. For a point of reference, the best that Sendek ever managed was 0.500…and was only that good once in 10 years. State has everything that we look for to clear the bubble with the exception of a decent OOC schedule. That will end up hurting State’s seeding, but that’s a far better problem than any I expected to discuss this year.

I’m surprised that Syracuse is looking that good on the Dance Card algorithm. With their easy ACC schedule, an 8-10 record is just not going to get it done. Ignore all of the SOS calculations and just look at who they played (which mean that you have to click the link above). They played a total of eight games against the seven teams in the ACC that won double-digit conference games…and five of those games were at home. You really can’t get much easier than that.

SYR’s conference record is the only real stain on their resume. So a win over UNC on Wednesday should be enough.

L’ville’s big problem is their paucity of quality wins. They might have enough, but I wouldn’t bet on it. If I’m right, that could be a real problem because they don’t have a favorable ACCT bracket for generating more wins….FSU in the 8/9 game and then UVa. Clearly a win over UVA would be enough and whether a win over FSU would be enough is just too close to call. I don’t see them making the NCAAT if they lose on Wed and enter Selection Sunday with three consecutive losses.

ND’s injuries were a tough deal. But you can’t substitute “might have won” for “did win” and move them ahead of some other team that earned a bid. ND drew a tough bracket, because I don’t think that a win over VT on Wednesday will be enough. I’m betting that they need a win over Duke on Thursday.

I avoided discussing the ACC team’s wins by the new quadrant system because I just don’t know how to compare Q1 and Q2 wins. So I just used the same philosophy that has been pretty decent over the last decade. If I’m horribly wrong, then we’ll all have to figure out a whole new system.

About VaWolf82

Engineer living in Central Va. and senior curmudgeon amongst SFN authors One wife, two kids, one dog, four vehicles on insurance, and four phones on cell plan...looking forward to empty nest status. Graduated 1982

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This topic contains 22 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by  GoldenChain 6 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 23 posts - 1 through 23 (of 23 total)
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  • #132177

    VaWolf82
    Keymaster

    It’s hard to believe that the regular season is already over. It’s been a great ride so far and I never expected to be able to say that considering wh
    [See the full post at: Last Look at the Bubble]

    #132178

    Pack78
    Participant

    Interesting stuff-had we beaten GT for the 3rd seed, we would most likely get the Cheats in the quarterfinals-our first game and their second…win that one and probably Dook next. As it is, hopefully see Clemmons in the quarters after the second round followed (probably) by UVA…we MAY be better off this way.

    #132184

    PackFan
    Participant

    ^I think so. I’d rather play Clemson and get another shot at a slightly less invincible looking Virginia team. Either way, a great season and possibly a sign of things to come.

    #132186

    Wulfpack
    Participant

    Lunardi just said he has Notre Dame in with wins over Pitt and Va Tech.

    #132188

    choppack1
    Participant

    So Vawolf – what are your thoughts on what we need to do, if anything in the tournament to secure a bid? Personally, it seems to me that we need to win Wednesday to have a relaxing Sunday. All the brackets have us in, but our metrics don’t correlate to a top 10 seed.

    #132191

    MrPlywood
    Participant

    but our metrics don’t correlate to a top 10 seed.

    Similar to the difference between the path of a 3 and 5 seed in the ACC tourney, I’d be fine with an 11 or 12 seed in the NCAA. The first round my be technically tougher that meeting an 8, but the second round is more attractive than meeting a 1 – even though none of the 1s seem invincible.

    #132192

    GoldenChain
    Participant

    VA obviously excellent work.

    This is a question I have: is there a rubric for like the “last 6 games of the regular season” or something? Sort of a late season fade/momentum thing. Part of me feels like how you do sliding in is a relative predictor of how you will do in the post season.
    In my book Clemson sort of swooned down the stretch as did Louisville. Wouldn’t surprise me if they both made early exits in the postseason. I’ll even throw unx in there because of ending the season the same way they started it, 1-2 in the league.
    Who was the coach at Clemson (I think he went to Auburn after that) who like had a 4 loss season or something but all the losses were in the last 3 weeks of the season then they made an early exit in the post season. (of course I’m sure there are examples of teams that catch fire in their conference tourney and end up making the sweet 16 but those have to be the exception because they lack MO going into their conference tourneys).

    #132193

    MrPlywood
    Participant

    In my book Clemson sort of swooned down the stretch as did Louisville.

    AFAIK there is no such quanitfier.

    Okladamnhoma passed out, fell down the stairs and couldn’t get up yet they are still a 10 as per Lunardi. Palm bent over backwards rationalizing that they had done enough early in the season to still be in.

    #132198

    YogiNC
    Participant

    Who was the coach at Clemson (I think he went to Auburn after that) who like had a 4 loss season or something but all the losses were in the last 3 weeks of the season then they made an early exit in the post season.

    King of the cupcakes, Cliff Ellis, who is now at Coastal Carolina in Conway, SC. He’s won over 800 games but considering his wins came over competition quite different than more lofty 800 games winners, well …

    Smarter than the average bear

    #132239

    VaWolf82
    Keymaster

    So Vawolf – what are your thoughts on what we need to do, if anything in the tournament to secure a bid?

    I think that State’s good. Obviously I don’t want to lose to BC, but I think that State has done enough.

    I also think that the miserable OOC schedule has degraded State’s RPI ranking so much that a poor seed is nearly assured almost no matter what State does in the ACCT. But for this year, just making the NCAAT should be a great calling card to use when KK goes recruiting for ’19 freshman.

    #132240

    VaWolf82
    Keymaster

    is there a rubric for like the “last 6 games of the regular season” or something? Sort of a late season fade/momentum thing.

    I think that in the past, that finishing strong against good competition was a plus and stumbling down the stretch was an issue. However several years ago, the Selection chair specifically said that all wins were treated the same no matter when they occurred. I have also documented several times where stumbling down the stretch clearly wasn’t used to give out bids.

    However, if the stumbling was caused by the loss of a key player that was not going to be available for the NCAAT….then the Selection Committee would include that in their deliberation. I specifically remember a mid-major that did not get a bid because their best player was lost late in the season.

    #132241

    VaWolf82
    Keymaster

    Lunardi just said he has Notre Dame in with wins over Pitt and Va Tech.

    Maybe, but I wouldn’t bet a huge sum of money on it.

    #132242

    Wulfpack
    Participant

    I think what we haven’t seen is the return of a key player just prior to postseason play (i.e. Colson). We’ll see soon enough how the committee views this in Notre Dame’s case.

    #132273

    13OT
    Participant

    I don’t see the ACC getting 11 teams in the NCAAT, just like I don’t see 9 Big XII teams making the Dance. The Selection Committee, at least in my opinion, will likely try and equal things out a little.

    Regardless of what happens in the ACCT, I think UVA, Duke, UNC, Clemson and Miami are in. I don’t think an opening loss for any of these will matter much for their seeding. I also think VT, FSU and the Wolfpack will make it if they lose today, but other teams’ successes could make FSU and State sweat a little on Selection Sunday. They’ll likely get in, but to me FSU simply isn’t a very good team outside Tally, and I think that’ll be proven again today.

    I think Louisville is going to get in, and Syracuse just might, especially if they win twice. I don’t see ND getting in with less than 3 ACCT wins, and although BC isn’t going to get in, the game today worries me. Despite State’s obvious won-loss improvement, I haven’t seen any significant defensive improvement. The Eagles are a well-coached team with two quality players who can go for 30 on any given day. I doubt Robinson will have another bad offensive game against us.

    If State continues its poor defense, I hope Omer Yurtseven stays out of foul trouble and continues his consistent play. Without him on the floor, I don’t think the Pack will spend much time in the post-season.

    And I’d like to thank the ACC Comish, John Swofford, for moving the ACCT to NYC. I haven’t heard today’s weather forecast, but I hope the snow there today makes the March 1980 ACCT snow in Greensboro look like a dusting.

    #132280

    BassPacker
    Participant

    Don’t see ACC getting 11 teams in either….which worries me that the Pack is not a lock. A loss today against BC, a run by da Ville, ND and Cuse, they could potentially pass Pack in NCAA at large bids. Beat BC today and feel better Pack is in. Lose today and better have some thick gloves to cover those fingernails.

    #132617

    choppack1
    Participant

    Yes. We have placed ourself at the mercy of the committee.

    #132667

    Texpack
    Participant

    Yes. We have placed ourself at the mercy of the committee.

    I’ll be concerned until I see us on the board. I’m amazed at all of the people having us as a lock. I hope they are correct.

    #132668

    choppack1
    Participant

    Me too texpack. Our RPI is the worst of any team “in”. We did ourselves zero favors with our first round loss combined with the Georgia tech loss. Win either of those games and we are on easy street. Most brackets have us in but this year has been a case study of what happens when bad scheduling meets with a bad last last 3 games. I think a lot of wolfpackers are whistling through the proverbial graveyard. If we are a 10 or 11 that will show just how close we were to being out of this thing.

    #132670

    choppack1
    Participant

    Dance card is updated and we are #34. Lunardi has a down a couple of spots. Bracket matrix has us in 72 of 76 and a 10 seed. Going to be sweating it come mañana

    #132761

    WolfpackCoach17
    Participant

    Syracuse made it in a couple of years ago with an RPI 70+ RPI. That I believe was the highest ever. This year, NC State was 64 and Arizona State was 66. Is that the second and third highest of all time? It’s hard to find research on that and thought VA Wolf might know. I remember we made it with a 63 one year but can’t remember higher.

    #132781

    VaWolf82
    Keymaster

    Syracuse made it in a couple of years ago with an RPI 70+ RPI. That I believe was the highest ever.

    When I first built the RPI ranges that I use for a quick and dirty test, there was one team that had something like #75. So SYR was the second team >70 since I’ve began tracking in the days of the Herbble.

    Earlier on in the season, there was a quote from the Selection Committee chairman that there had only been one team with an RPI >75 to get a bid. He didn’t mention the team or the year.

    #132785

    Texpack
    Participant

    Syracuse made it in a couple of years ago with an RPI 70+ RPI. That I believe was the highest ever.

    When I first built the RPI ranges that I use for a quick and dirty test, there was one team that had something like #75. So SYR was the second team >70 since I’ve began tracking in the days of the Herbble.

    Earlier on in the season, there was a quote from the Selection Committee chairman that there had only been one team with an RPI >75 to get a bid. He didn’t mention the team or the year.

    New Mexico State with an RPI of 78 iirc was something like 28-2 and regular season champs in the Ponderosa Athletic Association one year.

    #132797

    GoldenChain
    Participant

    New Mexico State with an RPI of 78 iirc was something like 28-2 and regular season champs in the Ponderosa Athletic Association one year.

    Dude say what you want but that was the PON DER OSA AA! not many people can say they were 28-2 after a season of that action! DUDE!

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