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    Game o’ the Day: Boston College vs. Pacific

    by Ken Pomeroy on Thursday, March 16, 2006


    Old-timey basketball fans that lament the present-day lack of teamwork in the sport haven’t seen Boston College play. The Eagles aren’t very athletic, but score at will against just about everybody thanks to a five-man unit that can all dish the rock.

    Old-timey fans that decry the lack of defense in the modern game probably shouldn’t pay much attention to BC. An opponent with a competent offense shouldn’t struggle to do better than a point per possession against the Eagles.

    Yet BC has become a popular choice to escape the Minneapolis bracket. Most of ESPN’s experts have picked BC, and they’ve even bought in down in ACC Country. But it seems that the Eagles will have to make some stops if they are going to go far. Even though their offense was excellent in the ACC Tourney, their defense was shredded by UNC and Duke.

    So that…

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    Bracket Breakdown

    by Ken Pomeroy on Tuesday, March 14, 2006


    One housekeeping note: The Duke/Miami game from the ACC Tourney was not in my possession stats database yesterday. I added it this morning, and that’s why UConn swapped spots with Duke in the Pythagorean order.

    It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been able to respond to every e-mail. But yesterday my e-mail volume exploded. I got a lot of e-mail, which was a record. Most of it like this:

    Can you tell me how I can use you system to make predictions?

    or

    Can you explain the numbers on your website?

    or

    Can you fill out my bracket for me?

    While I love the attention, I do not have the time nor inclination to answer these questions this week. And really, you should have showed up about two months ago. If you dig a little you’ll find the answers to most of your questions here, or…

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    Bracket Reax

    by Ken Pomeroy on Monday, March 13, 2006


    I really hate it when somebody says “This is the (fill-in-the-blank) ever.” Whatever is being said is most likely an exaggeration, and preys on the audience’s lack of memory. Case in point is how every year we have the “softest bubble ever”. People, we are dealing with teams ranked 40-50. Those teams are always soft. That’s why they aren’t close to the top 25.

    Having said that, this seems like the most bizarre bracket ever. I’m not going to break down all of the questionable decisions this committee made. It’s over and done with and it’s time to move on. But this year’s committee has set a precedent that even if you think there is no logical case for your team getting a bid, you better tune in to the Selection Show anyway because logic may not necessarily apply.

    One thing that slipped by me last week was…

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    Selection Sunday Is Here

    by Ken Pomeroy on Sunday, March 12, 2006


    Today we’ll get an honest assessment from the selection committee as to whether they feel the road-rage RPI really is better than the old version. If most of the bracketologists are correct, at least one of [Missouri State, Hofstra, George Mason] will not get a bid. All three are in the RPI top 30 and their omission would represent the first time in at least a while, and possibly since the RPI was first used in 1981, that a team ranked that high got snubbed. So that would speak volumes about the committee’s opinion of the current formula. Fans of those teams should not despair, however. Tony Mejia of CBS Sportsline, one of the few to nail the entire field last season, has the CAA getting three bids and the MVC getting five.

    There is a hidden story here about the trouble the NCAA has had in getting…

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    Musical Interlude

    by Ken Pomeroy on Friday, March 10, 2006


    I don’t have much substance to offer amid the tourney mayhem. I’ll get something up Sunday with comments about the last few days in addition to some bracket predictions. A couple of early ones: the Valley will get five bids and Gonzaga will slip to a 3 seed.

    For those of you wanting a tourney prediction method or something along those lines, check out what the folks at TeamRankings are doing with BracketBrains. A portion of the proceeds go to a good cause - me!

    As a belated gift to SEC fans, Dave Gallagher submitted these log5-based chances on the SEC Tournament.

     Quarters Semis Final Champ E2 Florida 100.00% 61.71% 36.06% 22.93% W1 LSU 100.00% 71.00% 35.62% 21.63% E1 Tennessee 100.00% 67.15% 40.32% 18.74% E3 Kentucky 85.96% 53.58% 27.53% 11.77% W3 Arkansas 81.78% 35.62% 18.61% 10.71% W2 Alabama 100.00% 43.44% 17.09% 5.35% E5 South Carolina 68.38% 25.90% 12.47%… 
    

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    A Log5 Cabin

    by Ken Pomeroy on Thursday, March 9, 2006


    Thanks to Richard Lipp and Ed Malczewski for contributing a log5 version of tournament odds for the Big 12 and Big Ten, respectively. Head on over to the Phog Blog for the Big 12 numbers. The Big Ten is below.

    Seed Quarters Semis Finals Champ 1 Ohio St. 100.00% 85.42% 60.64% 34.76% 3 Illinois 100.00% 70.74% 44.41% 26.03% 2 Iowa 100.00% 66.76% 31.74% 16.24% 4 Wisconsin 100.00% 55.90% 20.76% 7.95% 6 Michigan St. 84.23% 27.92% 12.84% 5.43% 5 Indiana 100.00% 44.10% 14.23% 4.70% 7 Michigan 63.24% 23.72% 8.46% 3.33% 10 Minnesota 36.76% 9.51% 2.35% 0.66% 9 Northwestern 58.43% 9.52% 3.09% 0.66% 8 Penn St. 41.57% 5.06% 1.29% 0.21% 11 Purdue 15.77% 1.34% 0.19% 0.02%

    Line o’ the Night
     FG 3pt FT Reb Min M-A M-A M-A O-T A F S TO BLK Pts Morris Almond 38 12-17 3-4 1-2 2-7 0 1 5 2 0 28 Result:… 
    

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    New vs. Old RPI

    by Ken Pomeroy on Wednesday, March 8, 2006


    While you’re waiting impatiently (You are impatient, right? Tell me you are. Please.) for my latest at espn.com to get posted, you can check out our boy Yoni’s piece on how the road rage RPI is possibly affecting the selection process. Let’s just say the CAA will owe a big thank you to the new formula if they get an at-large bid or two.

    Also, reader Sean McGrath took the log5 formula and applied it to the Pythagorean Ratings to come up with some probabilities for the Big East and ACC tourneys. Enjoy.

    Seed Team Quarters Semis Finals Champion 1 UConn 100.00% 81.66% 61.21% 39.71% 2 Villanova 100.00% 80.60% 52.64% 28.00% 6 Pitsburgh 66.54% 37.86% 17.53% 7.66% 3 West Virginia 100.00% 48.79% 19.52% 7.33% 4 Marquette 100.00% 47.14% 14.17% 5.34% 5 Georgetown 55.89% 30.99% 10.67% 4.56% 12 Notre Dame 44.11% 21.86% 6.50% 2.42% 11 Louisville 33.46% 13.35%… 
    

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    King of the Hill

    by Ken Pomeroy on Tuesday, March 7, 2006


                               FG    3pt  FT   Reb
                          Min  M-A   M-A  M-A  O-T  A F  S TO BLK Pts
    George Hill            35  6-13  0-1  5-11 6-12 4 3  0  2  1   17
    Result: Loss. Chicago St. 57, IUPUI 53.

    There were better lines last night, but this is my last chance to salute George Hill. If you’ve figured out how to manipulate my stats pages, you’ve seen a name that doesn’t belong in the top five in offensive rating among high-usage player. The list currently goes: Redick, Fazekas, Morrison, Hill, Foye. This was an average performance for Hill, except for the free throw shooting - he was an 82% shooter from the line coming into this one. This guy does everything well and is only a sophomore. Playing for a slow-paced team doesn’t allow him to rack up gaudy numbers, but he’ll terrorize MidCon opponents again next season.

     


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    The Mo Valley is Mo’ Boring

    by Ken Pomeroy on Monday, March 6, 2006


    You know I have the MVC’s back on a lot of things. For instance, this idea that is gaining momentum that the MVC is fraudulent because all of their quality wins have come in-conference. Hey, look at bubble teams from power conferences. You’re not going to find too many that have big out-of-conference wins. So don’t lay a double standard on the MVC. However…

    Check out the halftime scores of the nine games of the MVC Tourney: 24-23, 24-22, 20-20, 23-19, 23-21, 25-16, 30-24, 19-10, 18-17. Consider yourself warned to tune into games involving Valley teams sometime in the second half.

    On an unrelated note, the most convenient way to keep up with conference tournament action is by stopping by The Bracket Board, and utilizing the One Stop Shop.

    Friday
     FG 3pt FT Reb Min M-A M-A M-A O-T A F S TO BLK Pts Ricky Woods 39… 
    

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    This Just In…

    by Ken Pomeroy on Sunday, March 5, 2006


    Giving my own personal “Full Circle” coverage here…

    - I haven’t heard anybody say it yet, so I will: Right now, UNC is the best team in the ACC. Even if you believe last night’s game was an abberation and Duke is still the best bet to go the farthest in the dance - which is perfectly reasonable - I think you’d have to admit the gap between these two is now very small. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised to see either Duke or UNC in the Final Four. I thought it was odd that near the end of the game, Brad Nessler noted that UNC was playing for a 2-seed in the ACC Tourney and would get the spoils of avoiding Duke until the title game. I mean, UNC had just won in Duke’s house. If there’s one team trying to avoid the other, I would suggest…

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