Last Sunday, the mock selection committee met once again to get ready for selection week. Here are the results of that meeting.
There's less than a week remaining now before the official process starts, and teams seem to be finding more ways of playing themselves out of the field of 65, rather than in the field. With Pittsburgh, Iowa State, Notre Dame and even Vermont suffering bad losses this past weekend, finding worthy teams to select for at-large bids is getting more difficult by the week.
In the second unofficial first ballots this week, the following teams received all eligible votes on the at large ballots: Alabama, Arizona, Boston College, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Duke, Gonzaga, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan State, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Syracuse, Utah, Villanova, Wake Forest, Washington and Wisconsin.
Additionally, Florida, LSU, Pacific, Southern Illinois and Texas Tech all received enough ballots (all but two at most) to be on at large board. However, these results are still preliminary. Starting Sunday evening (Wednesday for the real committee), the ballots and their results will be official.
For the weekly bubble talk, the committee was all puzzled by Vermont's decision to sit their stars, Taylor Coppenrath and T.J. Sorrentine for the game at Maine on Monday—a game in which they ultimately got hammered. Kent State is starting to sneak up on people, as they have 4 top 50 RPI wins and a solid RPI of 46, although Wednesday's blowout loss to Miami certainly didn't help their case.
With their showings this past week, Notre Dame and Georgetown have put themselves in more perilous situations, especially Georgetown. The Hoyas have lost three straight, and have a high RPI of 71.
On the other hand, West Virginia has put themselves in the minds of the committee with four straight wins. The Mountaineers only have one top 50 RPI win, but that does not count a sweep of Pittsburgh. As of Thursday, West Virginia's RPI is resting at a modest 54th.
Speaking of Panthers, their recent three-game slide has dropped their RPI to 46 earlier in the week and a seemingly guaranteed tournament berth looked to slipping away. A big win over Boston College this week, really stopped the bleeding, however. Now they should be sitting in the middle of the pack as far as seeding goes.
Next week, the fun will really begin. Championship Week means plenty of meetings, lots of voting, and trying to burst that large, pesky bubble.
This Sunday, the committee will go over the official ballots, go over the different types of voting the committee will use in the selection process, and start to add teams to the at-large board.
Then, on Tuesday, we will add more teams to the field if spots on the at-large board open up, start discussing the seeds, and begin dissecting the bubble further.
A week from Thursday, we will continue the process of voting teams into the field, make changes on the at-large board if necessary, and start to talk about the S-Curve—the ranking of teams 1-65 that the committee uses to fill the brackets.
Finally, on the hectic Friday and Saturday before Selection Sunday, the committee will complete the process of putting teams into the field, and start the S-Curve ranking. Lastly, on Sunday, we will finish the S-Curve and the fun will begin with completing the bracket as we feel should be the final field of 65.