Monday, March 15, 2010

It Just Doesn’t Add Up

I’m not shocked that Illinois was left out of the NCAA tournament; I’m simply very frustrated and a bit befuddled about how they were left out, and how other teams were chosen over them. All I ask for is consistency, logic, and honesty. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, however, as these three things are obviously lacking in every other facet of the NCAA (officiating, investigations, etc.) So in order to let off a little steam and see who beat us out and why, the following is a listing of the 5 teams that most likely stole our spot in the field of 65:

Minnesota (they are in because they beat Illinois and had a relatively easy schedule)
Good Wins: Butler, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Michigan St, Purdue (no Hummel)
Bad Losses: Portland, Miami (FL), Indiana
Notes: Played a week non-conference, played a week conference, beat Illinois by 2, made a tourney run against teams with suspensions or injuries and then got beat by 29against a team Illinois took to double overtime.

Florida (they are in because the SEC needed more than 3 teams)
Good Wins: Florida St, Michigan St, Tennessee
Bad Losses: South Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia
Notes: 9-7 in a mediocre SEC

California (the only explanation of why they are in, let alone an 8 seed (!!!!!), is that there were 2 powerful PAC-10 individuals on the committee)
Good Wins: Iowa St?, USC?, Washington?
Bad Losses: Oregon State, UCLA, Arizona
Notes: They lost to every quality opponent they played and won the worst PAC-10 ever with 5 losses

UTEP (In because of easy scheduling)
Good Wins: New Mexico St?, Oklahoma?, UAB (x2)?
Bad Losses: New Mexico St, Houston (x2)
Notes: Went on a long conference run in a very weak conference USA

Utah State (They are in because.. umm…. They beat 17 high school caliber teams in a row?)
Good Wins: BYU, New Mexico St.?
Bad Losses: Utah, Northeastern, St. Mary’s, Long Beach St, New Mexico St (x2), Louisiana Tech,
Notes: I don’t know what to say, there is really NO way this team should have gotten an at large bid… NONE!

I can understand how Minnesota got in over us; I don’t agree with it, but I understand it. I can maybe see how Florida and UTEP sneak in… MAYBE. I can not, in any way, see how California and UTEP deserve a spot in the dance before we do.

This leads me to believe that the selection process is either extremely political or it simply over favors the number of wins a team compiles. If the former is the case than I just give up, if the latter is the case then I say next year Illinois should try to avoid all top 25 competition until the Big 10 season. That way we can go 23-10 and get a nice comfy 10 seed.

PS. Don’t get me started about the BS that the committee chair espoused trying to explain how a few teams (including Illinois) were left out. Literally every point he made did not apply to Illinois (non-conference schedule strength, conference schedule strength, wins on the road, and quality wins)... wow, just wow!


  1. Yeah, it is pretty clear that the selection commitee did not put enough weight on quality wins.
    Cal only won 1 game against another team that made it in the tourney, Washington. And they also lost twice to Washington during the season.
    The pac 10 be damned. They only deserved 1 team in, and that is the bottom line.

    I appreciate the artwork. I will second the frowny face.

  2. Actually on further review, Cal also beat 13 seed Murrey State in their first game of the season.
    So bully for them.

    whatever, the point remains the same.

  3. It's a shame. Illinois is a team that could have made for better games and a potential Cinderella run (at least a short one). Illinois has shown it can take a #2 seed down to the wire...twice.

    Oh well. I'm pulling for a UI-UNC rematch in the NIT finals.


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