Women's Hoops Blog

Inane commentary on a game that deserves far better

Monday, March 08, 2004

A very Q&D look at where we stand with bids:


Locks: Duke, UNC.
Bubble: Maryland, NC State.

Both bubble teams were .500 in conference play. Both have RPIs in the 40s, with Maryland's slightly better. Maryland had a lot of powderpuff nonconference games, and it's best win all year was the one over NC State. NC State's had one helpful preseason victory over Loyola, and the big one over UNC.


Locks: GW.
Bubble: Temple, Richmond, St. Joe's.

Richmond has an RPI in the 40s. It has a great win over Florida, and a borderline loss to La Salle. It had won 7 in a row before losing to Temple in the A-10 tourney. Temple has now beaten Richmond twice, but it has also lost to Penn and Rhode Island. St. Joe's will probably not make it unless it beats Temple tonight and gets the automatic. The other two are borderline.

Update: Temple's in with the automatic bid.

Big 12

Locks: Texas, K State, Texas Tech, Colorado, Baylor, Oklahoma.
Bubble: Mizzou, Nebraska.

Both were only 7-9 in conference, but in the Big 12, that's forgiveable. Both teams have a couple nice quality wins: Mizzou over Iowa and Oklahoma, Nebraska over Ohio State and K State. They were 1-1 head-to-head. If the committee takes just one, it will probably go to Mizzou based on its tougher nonconference schedule.

Big East

Locks: UConn, Notre Dame, 'Nova, Miami, BC, Rutgers, V Tech.
Bubble: W Virginia.

All eight of these teams beat each other up pretty good in conference. All of them lost games to each other, but won most or all of the games they should have. With the exception of UConn high and WVA low, the other six are all bunched together with RPIs in the 20s. So I think all 7 of those are in.

WVa is tricky. 10-6 in the Big East is impressive. It has a bunch of quality wins: Notre Dame, V Tech, Nova, Rutgers... but also a bunch of shady losses: Delaware State, Northwestern, and Seton Hall. Their nonconference schedule was too easy. I think they're out.

Big Ten

Locks: Penn State, Purdue, Michigan State, Ohio State, Minnesota.
Bubble: Iowa.

This might seem a bit backward (or biased) because Iowa actually finished better than Minnesota. But Minnesota has an RPI in the high 20s or low 30s, and Iowa is in the high 30s. Despite the Gophers' terrible finish, they still have good wins over Penn State and Colorado, and they have no really questionable losses. Iowa's wins over Marquette and Michigan State aren't as good... but overall, still probably enough to get in.

Conference USA

Locks: Houston, TCU, DePaul.
Bubble: Lousiville, Marquette, Memphis.

This is tough. Marquette and Louisville have RPIs in the 30s in some systems, but 50s or 60s in others. Marquette beat DePaul twice, but it has no quality nonconference wins, and it lost to St. Bonnies and UAB. Louisville beat Houston, but it has no quality nonconference wins, and it lost to Cleveland St. Memphis has a good record but an easy schedule and no quality wins at all -- they're probably out. The other two are borderline.

Pac 10

Locks: Stanford, Arizona
Bubble: UCLA, ASU, USC, Washington

This is also tough. All four of the bubble teams have relatively low RPIs. UCLA has wins over UA, Ohio St, and the loss to St Mary's. ASU has the wins over UA and Stanford, and the loss to Wash St. USC has the wins over UA and Stanford, and the loss to Cal. UW has the win over Notre Dame, but only 9-9 in conference, and just 3-9 against the Pac 10's five other good teams.

I think UCLA's strong finish and slight RPI edge gets it in. ASU might make it. USC and UW are doubtful.


Locks: Tennessee, LSU, Vandy, Georgia, Florida, Auburn.
Bubble: Ole Miss, Arkansas.

Ole Miss was just .500 in conference, but has an RPI of high 40s or low 50s. Arkansas has an RPI in the 40s, but you just can't make the NCAA tournament with a 5-9 conference record. I think neither team gets in. Arkansas may be the best RPI team left out.

That makes 18 bubble teams. There are maybe another one or two in other conferences. Depending on how the tournaments all finish out, it looks like there will be about 9 spots for them all. If you change Iowa, Mizzou, and UCLA to locks, then you've got about 15 teams competing for about 6 spots.

Related Posts:
1. The Pool is Set
2. Pac-10
3. Reaction
4. Utah