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Regional ranking predictions


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  • Regional ranking predictions

    Since the actual regional rankings come out this week, I'm going into a little more detail this week. My basic process in making these is to first calculate a weighted average of the numeric criteria (PI, RPI, W%, SOS) that seems to more or less mirror how the committees weight those. Starting from that weighted average, I then adjust the resulting rankings based on non-numeric criteria – granted, I'm not quite sure how to apply those, but hopefully the committee rankings will help me get a better handle on that. It's possible the "record vs. ranked teams" doesn't apply until the second regional ranking, as is the case in D3.

    Atlantic Region
    1. Indiana (20-2)
    2. Shippensburg (19-5)
    3. Fairmont State (17-5)
    4. West Liberty (20-4)
    5. Charleston (19-5)
    6. Virginia State (19-7)
    7. West Virginia State (16-6)
    8. Pitt Johnstown (16-6)
    9. Johnson C. Smith (17-6)
    10. California (15-8)
    My weighted average has Fairmont State, West Liberty, and Charleston in a virtual tie. FSU's win over Shippensburg is the main reason they come out on top; there's a case to be made for putting the Fighting Falcons at #2. WLU visits Fairmont on Sunday; a sweep of FSU would be handy in breaking out of the MEC pack. (Though the Hilltoppers have a two-game lead in the conference standings, their SOS is holding them down.)

    California shows up eighth in the weighted average, but the fact remains that they're 0-6 against the other teams in this top 10. It doesn't look like they'll have a chance to remedy that until at least the PSAC semifinals – possibly not even until the final, at which point a win would put them in the regional regardless. Pitt Johnstown has the sweep over the Vulcans as well as a win over Shippensburg, which is enough to vault the Mountain Cats over Cal and Johnson C. Smith (whose only results against this top 10 are a split with VSU).

    The only team other than these ten that I can see potentially cracking this week's regional rankings is Mercyhurst, with their wins over IUP and UPJ.

    (The CIAA made the bizarre choice this season to have its 12 teams play a 22-game double round robin, but not count every game in the conference standings. The teams are official divided into North and South divisions of five and seven teams, respectively; each team counts both games against teams in their division, but only one against each cross-division opponent, totaling 15 counting games for North teams and 17 for South teams. Due to this, the CIAA standings are only useful for understanding the conference tournament seeding.)

    Other regions to follow in separate posts.

  • #2
    Central Region
    1. Northwest Missouri State (21-1)
    2. Southeastern Oklahoma State (17-6)
    3. Missouri Southern (16-5)
    4. Southern Nazarene (18-7)
    5. Northern State (20-6)
    6. Rogers State (17-5)
    7. Minnesota–Duluth (19-7)
    8. Oklahoma Baptist (15-8)
    9. Sioux Falls (19-6)
    10. Henderson State (15-7)
    Being the only conference with four teams in the top 10, coupled with being the only conference that plays a double round robin, means that the GAC teams have played more games against other top 10 teams than the MIAA and NSIC teams have. That could prove to be helpful for the conference. Meanwhile, Missouri Southern is 0-2 against the rest of the top 10, Northern State is 1-4, and Sioux Falls is 1-1. (Is 1-1 really a worse record than 3-4? Maybe not, but Oklahoma Baptist's 3-4 includes wins over SEOSU and SNU.)

    I expect these teams, in some order, to be the committee's top 10. Upper Iowa has a nice 4-1 mark against the top 10, but I don't think that's enough to get them in.


    • #3
      East Region
      1. Bridgeport (20-2)
      2. Jefferson (22-2)
      3. St. Thomas Aquinas (20-4)
      4. Dominican NY (19-5)
      5. Daemen (21-6)
      6. Le Moyne (18-7)
      7. St. Anselm (15-8)
      8. Stonehill (15-10)
      9. Post (17-8)
      10. Franklin Pierce (14-8)
      This is the only region where I have a significant doubt as to who the #1 team in the first regional rankings will be. Jefferson has a win over Bridgeport, but Bridgeport is 6-1 against the other eight teams on this list whereas Jefferson is 3-2.

      Another thing I'm not sure about is whether it makes sense to have zero NE10 teams in the top 5. After all, the conference is a combined 58-30 against the CACC and ECC. But I'm not sure what NE10 team has a top-5 résumé right now. Maybe St. Anselm, but I'm keeping them behind Le Moyne for now.

      I chose Franklin Pierce over Adelphi for the final spot due to the head-to-head result.
      Last edited by Inkblot; 02-17-2020, 02:46 PM.


      • #4
        Midwest Regional
        1. Indianapolis (18-5)
        2. Bellarmine (16-6)
        3. Truman (17-7)
        4. UMSL (15-5)
        5. Ferris State (20-5)
        6. Grand Valley State (18-5)
        7. Southern Indiana (18-5)
        8. Davenport (16-8)
        9. Walsh (15-4)
        10. Michigan Tech (15-8)
        This region is a mess.

        In my weighted average, there's a logjam from #2 through #6. And another from #8 through... well, it's hard to tell exactly where that one ends, but it goes way past tenth. Among those just outside this top 10 (and potentially inside the committee's top 10) are Findlay, Drury, Ashland, Southwest Baptist, and Rockhurst.

        One thing I think is clear, though, is that the GMAC will be a one-bid conference. The odds of a GMAC team losing in the conference tournament and remaining in the top seven seem low.
        Last edited by Inkblot; 02-17-2020, 02:48 PM.


        • #5
          South Region
          1. Florida Southern (23-2)
          2. Nova Southeastern (18-3)
          3. Valdosta State (18-3)
          4. Lee (16-5)
          5. Miles (16-3)
          6. West Alabama (16-6)
          7. Palm Beach Atlantic (17-6)
          8. Alabama–Huntsville (18-5)
          9. Barry (13-7)
          10. Embry–Riddle (14-9)
          Miles will likely enter Selection Sunday with zero games against regionally ranked opponents. I have no clue if their high winning percentage and PI will be enough to get them into the regional if they fail to win the SIAC tournament.

          One thing this region is light on is signature wins. Most of what the teams in the 6-10 range have to show is losses to the top four and splits with other teams in their range. I put Embry–Riddle in ahead of St. Leo despite St. Leo's head-to-head win, just because ERAU actually has signature wins (over Florida Southern and Lee) whereas the best the Lions can say is that eight of their ten losses are to teams ahead of them.


          • #6
            South Central Region
            1. West Texas A&M (22-1)
            2. St. Edward's (19-2)
            3. Dixie State (21-4)
            4. Black Hills State (17-6)
            5. Angelo State (15-6)
            6. Texas A&M Kingsville (17-6)
            7. Colorado Mines (18-8)
            8. Dallas Baptist (14-7)
            9. Lubbock Christian (12-8)
            10. Colorado Mesa (13-9)
            There's a lot of separation in my weighted average. The top four teams each have a significant gap between them and the next team in line. Angelo State and Texas A&M Kingsville are virtually tied, with the deciding factor here being that ASU is 2-4 against the rest of the top 10 with a sweep of Lubbock Christian whereas TAMUK is 0-4. The Javelinas have ample opportunity to improve that mark, however, with games against ASU, LSU, and Dallas Baptist approaching.

            I admit Colorado Mesa is an uninspiring choice for the #10 spot, being 0-6 against teams ahead of them. The other options were Tarleton State (1-7 with a split with DBU) and South Dakota Mines (1-3 with a win over Colorado Mines, plus head-to-head over Colorado Mesa), but neither seemed impressive enough to offset the difference in the numerical criteria.


            • #7
              Southeast Region
              1. Lincoln Memorial (23-1)
              2. UNC Pembroke (19-5)
              3. Queens NC (18-6)
              4. Catawba (18-6)
              5. Augusta (17-7)
              6. Lander (17-7)
              7. King (17-6)
              8. Tusculum (16-10)
              9. USC Aiken (17-9)
              10. Southern Wesleyan (15-10)
              With three weeks left before Selection Sunday, only seven Southeast teams have loss totals below nine.

              UNC Pembroke's six wins over other teams in the top 10 narrowly outweighed Queens' head-to-head win. USC Aiken has a great RPI, but not much in the way of good wins to show for it; this fact and their loss to Tusculum dropped them behind the Pioneers.

              Southern Wesleyan emerged out of a close race for 10th, beating out Columbus State, Belmont Abbey, Emmanuel, and Anderson. It wouldn't surprise me to see any of those in the committee's top 10.

              King looks like a probable at-large team should they lose in the CC tournament. If the Tornado win(s) the auto bid, it may still be possible for another CC team to sneak into the eighth spot.


              • #8
                West Region
                1. UC San Diego (24-1)
                2. Azusa Pacific (21-3)
                3. Cal Poly Pomona (17-5)
                4. Chico State (17-6)
                5. Cal State San Bernardino (18-5)
                6. Seattle Pacific (18-5)
                7. Point Loma Nazarene (17-6)
                8. Concordia CA (18-7)
                9. Western Oregon (16-6)
                10. Chaminade (15-6)
                The GNAC is in a similar position to Conference Carolinas (as described in the previous post). If these rankings went to 16, it's possible five of the six additions would be from the GNAC. For now, Western Oregon isn't helped by their only games against other teams in this top 10 being a sweep at the hands of Seattle Pacific. As for SPU, they're in good shape to get in, but not to get a high seed, as three of their five losses came to the current #2, #3, and #4.

                I feel pretty confident in these ten being in the official rankings.