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Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
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Fighting Muskie Offline
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Post: #1
Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
We've already done a thread this year on the decline of mid-majors receiving at large bids but I posit this question? Could the Power basketball leagues who have more than 10 members go to 20 game conference schedules in an effort to squeeze more mid majors out of the tournament?

I am not an RPI expert but I know that the selection committee places a lot of weight on it and RPI is heavily dependent upon who you play. If the ACC, Big Ten, SEC, and Pac 12 went to 20 game schedules that eliminates 78 potential match ups between the establishment and schools from conferences who are on the outside. The games that would be dropped aren't going to be against the schools who are easy wins but rather the mid major programs that pose a threat at winning. Mid majors already struggle in RPI because their conference schedules drag them down but the 20 game schedule could make it even harder for them to put OOC games on the schedule that could boost their numbers. My expectation is that we would see more teams like this year's Wake Forest getting in over Illinois St types.
03-19-2017 04:50 PM
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_C2_ Online
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
Not as long as there are preseason tournaments. As long as teams can play in those yearly, they'll have a shot to pull in high RPI wins. If they go away, have their quantity reduced or if teams can play in them every other year like around the turn of the century, then I agree.
03-19-2017 05:06 PM
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
Yes, golden geese can be killed if you work hard enough to do it.

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03-20-2017 11:35 AM
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orangefan Offline
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
The major conferences need to be careful though. To a large extent, results in OOC games establish the overall RPI of the conference. Individual school RPIs then rise and fall based on results in conference play. If if a conference doesn't play and win against strong opposition, it can't build a strong RPI.
03-20-2017 11:53 AM
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_C2_ Online
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
Yes it can, all they have to do is have each conference team play the worst of the worst in D-I, play a few other major conference teams then play each other in conference. The middle-tier conferences would be starved out. The A-10 and a few AAC schools would be fine due to location and need for quick road trips but everyone else could be in trouble finding good games.
03-20-2017 12:16 PM
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Chappy Offline
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
(03-20-2017 12:16 PM)_C2_ Wrote:  Yes it can, all they have to do is have each conference team play the worst of the worst in D-I, play a few other major conference teams then play each other in conference. The middle-tier conferences would be starved out. The A-10 and a few AAC schools would be fine due to location and need for quick road trips but everyone else could be in trouble finding good games.

If you play the worst of the worst in D1, when those schools finish at the bottom of their lowly ranked conferences, then your RPI will indeed suffer.

You'd need to play the best of the worst, or the schools that wind up with 22 wins in their lowly ranked conferences.
(This post was last modified: 03-20-2017 12:31 PM by Chappy.)
03-20-2017 12:30 PM
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MplsBison Offline
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
Minnesota played 13 non-conf games, and 18 conf games.

Of those 13, four were against the P6 in bball.


I'd be just fine going to 11/20, sacrificing two of those P6 games.


Not a big fan of seeing big time, non-conference matchups during the regular season, in football or basketball. Save that for the post-season.
03-20-2017 12:44 PM
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Wedge Offline
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
(03-20-2017 12:30 PM)Chappy Wrote:  If you play the worst of the worst in D1, when those schools finish at the bottom of their lowly ranked conferences, then your RPI will indeed suffer.

You'd need to play the best of the worst, or the schools that wind up with 22 wins in their lowly ranked conferences.

That's one of the tricks that several teams used a few years ago to game the RPI -- if you play the best team in a terrible conference, you can get credit from RPI for beating a 20-win team even if 18 of that team's wins were over teams that couldn't beat a solid high school team. But if the NCAA tournament committee no longer lets RPI dictate at-large and seeding decisions, then that trick doesn't help.
03-20-2017 12:59 PM
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
(03-20-2017 12:30 PM)Chappy Wrote:  
(03-20-2017 12:16 PM)_C2_ Wrote:  Yes it can, all they have to do is have each conference team play the worst of the worst in D-I, play a few other major conference teams then play each other in conference. The middle-tier conferences would be starved out. The A-10 and a few AAC schools would be fine due to location and need for quick road trips but everyone else could be in trouble finding good games.

If you play the worst of the worst in D1, when those schools finish at the bottom of their lowly ranked conferences, then your RPI will indeed suffer.

You'd need to play the best of the worst, or the schools that wind up with 22 wins in their lowly ranked conferences.

That's cancelled out by the fact that teams would be playing other teams with good records. When you schedule a buy game against a SWAC, MEAC or NEC school you have little risk of losing. Even if your RPI suffers, you have a chance to pick up quality wins in conference and the committee evaluates how many RPI top 50, top 25, etc... wins you have. So there's little downside as long as you don't go overboard in scheduling too many.
03-20-2017 01:02 PM
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ChrisLords Offline
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RE: Could 20 game conference schedules squeeze out the mid major at larges?
(03-19-2017 04:50 PM)Fighting Muskie Wrote:  We've already done a thread this year on the decline of mid-majors receiving at large bids but I posit this question? Could the Power basketball leagues who have more than 10 members go to 20 game conference schedules in an effort to squeeze more mid majors out of the tournament?

I am not an RPI expert but I know that the selection committee places a lot of weight on it and RPI is heavily dependent upon who you play. If the ACC, Big Ten, SEC, and Pac 12 went to 20 game schedules that eliminates 78 potential match ups between the establishment and schools from conferences who are on the outside. The games that would be dropped aren't going to be against the schools who are easy wins but rather the mid major programs that pose a threat at winning. Mid majors already struggle in RPI because their conference schedules drag them down but the 20 game schedule could make it even harder for them to put OOC games on the schedule that could boost their numbers. My expectation is that we would see more teams like this year's Wake Forest getting in over Illinois St types.

I disagree that the quality RPI OOC mid-majors will be the schools squeezed out by P6 conferences going to 20 conference games. The P6 schools need those quality RPI schools to keep there own RPI and other metrics top tier. I think it would be the 200+ RPI matchups that get reduced and all college basketball fans will benefit from seeing those crappy matchups go away in favor of more conference matchups.
03-20-2017 07:57 PM
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