Wednesday, March 7, 2007

2002 NCAA Tourney Breakdown

Remember this tournament? Missouri limped in as a 12-seed with an absolutely lousy resume. Unconscionable losses all over the place, 1 (one) Top-100 win in the conference, and worst of all, the double whammy: A coach who not only looks like Quin Snyder, but coaches like Quin Snyder.

Naturally, they went to the Elite Eight.

I mean seriously. Quin fucking Snyder.

[EDIT: I asked the Ladies... about him, and I guess they kind of have a different opinion of him than I do. For some reason.]




2002

South
Seed School Conference Record Berth Type
#1 Duke
ACC
27-3
Tournament Champion
#2 Alabama
SEC
25-6
At-Large
#3 Pittsburgh
Big East
26-4
At-Large
#4 USC
Pac-10
22-8
At-Large
#5 Indiana
Big 10
19-10
At-Large
#6 California
Pac-10
22-8
At-Large
#7 Oklahoma State
Big 12
23-8
At-Large
#8 Notre Dame
Big East
20-10
At-Large
#9 Charlotte
C-USA
18-11
At-Large
#10 Kent State
MAC
25-5
Tournament Champion
#11 Penn
Ivy
24-6
Regular Season Champion
#12 Utah
MWC
19-8
At-Large
#13 UNC-Wilmington
CAA
22-9
Tournament Champion
#14 Central Connecticut
NEC
27-4
Tournament Champion
#15 Florida Atlantic
Atlantic Sun
18-11
Tournament Champion
#16 Winthrop
Big South
17-11
Tournament Champion
West
Seed School Conference Record Berth Type
#1 Cincinnati
C-USA
29-3
Tournament Champion
#2 Oklahoma
Big 12
25-4
Tournament Champion
#3 Arizona
Pac-10
21-9
Tournament Champion
#4 Ohio State
Big 10
21-7
Tournament Champion
#5 Miami (FL)
Big East
24-7
At-Large
#6 Gonzaga
WCC
28-3
Tournament Champion
#7 Xavier
A-10
24-5
Tournament Champion
#8 UCLA
Pac-10
19-11
At-Large
#9 Mississippi
SEC
19-10
At-Large
#10 Hawaii
WAC
26-5
Tournament Champion
#11 Wyoming
MWC
20-8
At-Large
#12 Missouri
Big 12
21-11
At-Large
#13 Davidson
Southern
18-9
Tournament Champion
#14 UC-Santa Barbera
Big West
18-10
Tournament Champion
#15 Illinois-Chicago
Horizon
17-13
Tournament Champion
#16 Boston
Am. East
21-9
Tournament Champion
Midwest
Seed School Conference Record Berth Type
#1 Kansas
Big 12
26-2
At-Large
#2 Oregon
Pac-10
22-8
At-Large
#3 Mississippi State
SEC
24-7
Tournament Champion
#4 Illinois
Big 10
24-7
At-Large
#5 Florida
SEC
22-8
At-Large
#6 Texas
Big 12
20-10
At-Large
#7 Wake Forest
ACC
20-11
At-Large
#8 Stanford
Pac-10
19-9
At-Large
#9 Western Kentucky
Sun Belt
26-3
Tournament Champion
#10 Pepperdine
WCC
21-8
At-Large
#11 Boston College
Big East
20-11
At-Large
#12 Creighton
MVC
22-8
Tournament Champion
#13 San Diego State
MWC
18-11
Tournament Champion
#14 McNeese State
Southland
19-8
Tournament Champion
#15 Montana
Big Sky
13-14
Tournament Champion
#16 Holy Cross
Patriot
18-14
Tournament Champion
East
Seed School Conference Record Berth Type
#1 Maryland
ACC
26-3
At-Large
#2 Connecticut
Big East
23-6
Tournament Champion
#3 Georgia
SEC
21-9
At-Large
#4 Kentucky
SEC
19-9
At-Large
#5 Marquette
C-USA
26-5
At-Large
#6 Texas Tech
Big 12
23-7
At-Large
#7 N.C. State
ACC
21-9
At-Large
#8 Wisconsin
Big 10
17-12
At-Large
#9 St. John's
Big East
20-11
At-Large
#10 Michigan State
Big 10
18-11
At-Large
#11 Southern Illinois
MVC
26-7
At-Large
#12 Tulsa
WAC
25-5
At-Large
#13 Valparaiso
MCC
24-7
Tournament Champion
#14 Murray State
OVC
17-11
Tournament Champion
#15 Hampton
MEAC
24-6
Tournament Champion
Play-in Alcorn State
SWAC
19-9
Tournament Champion
Play-in Siena
MAAC
16-18
Tournament Champion

Last teams in: Missouri, Tulsa, Utah (12 seeds)
Worst RPI's in: Wyoming (#60), Wisconsin (#54)
Best RPI's left out: Villanova (#43), Arkansas (#46)

Conference RPI standings (number of bids received)
1. SEC (6)
2. ACC (4)
3. Big 12 (6)
4. Big East (6)
5. Pac-10 (6)
6. Big 10 (5)
7. Mountain West (3)
8. Conference USA (3)
9. Atlantic 10 (1)
10. WAC (2)

Mid-Major Involvement
For purposes of consistency, regardless of the conference ranks, we'll regard the ACC, Big 10, Big XII, Pac-10, Big East, and SEC as the "power conferences." Although the Missouri Valley rates very well in comparison to those teams, until Bradley gets to the Final Four or something, they're still a mid-major.

Power Conference Automatic Bids: 6
Mid-Major Automatic Bids: 24
Power Conference At-Large Bids: 27
Mid-Major At-Large Bids: 8

TEAM MOST LIKE IOWA:
I don't think you have a proper understanding of how hard this part is. Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a team that had such a horrifying non-conference tilt, then posted a winning record in a power conference? Sometimes I can't even find a team with such a horrendous non-conference RPI even in the Top 100 overall. That the Hawkeyes found themselves in such a position this year speaks either to their perseverence or Alford's uncanny ability to quickly lead a team straight out of tournament contention, regardless of how far along the season is. Anyway.

BIG EAST
5W. Rutgers (18-12, 8-8) (RPI: 83)

Rutgers was ninth place in the Big East, yes, but we're talking about a 14-team conference here. Rutgers's non-conference schedule is comically bad--it's littered with creampuffs like Stony Brook (who I've never heard of), Hartford (not the Whalers, sadly), and Fairleigh Dickinson, who is fairleigh awful. Oh, and in February they took a break from the Big Easy East to play St. Peter's, another school that couldn't crack the top 300 of the RPI (and another school I've never heard of).

By the time January 22 rolled around, the Scarlet Knights were 11-7 and 2-4 in the conference. As you might expect, they went on a 6-1 tear that included 3 wins against NCAA-bound UConn, Miami, and Notre Dame. That. Just. Happened.

Soon, however, they remembered they were Rutgers and all that entails, and lost 4 of the last 5 games of the season, including a first-round loss in the conference tourney.

I hope you've noticed that just about every team I find that reminds me of Iowa ends up biting it in the conference tournament very early. That wasn't by design, but it's certainly something you should keep in mind if you're thinking of heading to the United Center on Friday.

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