Saturday’s bubble action. This post will be updated throughout the day.
Michigan (KenPom: 50, RPI: 55, CBT Bracketology Seed: First Four Out) could not extend their winning streak to three games in the Big Ten tournament, bowing out in the semifinals against Purdue. The Wolverines are going to be a fascinating case come tomorrow. They have four top 30 wins — Texas and Indiana on neutral courts, Purdue and Maryland at home — but that’s the entirety of their top 100 wins. They’ve lost 12 games this season, but 11 of those losses came against top 50 competition and the 12th come on the road to Ohio State, who is 70th in the RPI.
So the question becomes what you value.
This is a team that has proven they can beat quality teams and do so away from home. They don’t have any great road wins, but they don’t have any horrible losses. I think Michigan is going to end up on the outside looking in for two reasons: their sub-200 non-conference strength of schedule and their lack of true road wins.
- UConn (KP: 29, RPI: 42, CBT: 10): The Huskies should be OK after beating Temple, but there’s a catch-22 here. They’re going to play either Memphis or Tulane in the AAC title game, and a loss to one of those teams would be the kind of loss that really hurts a profile, a sub-125 loss. How unique is that? We’re talking about a top seven conference here, and if the Huskies lose in the tournament title game, it may end up being a loss that drops them from a 10-seed to the wrong side of the bubble.
- VCU (KP: 34, RPI: 37, CBT: Play-in Game): VCU knocked off Davidson to get to Atlantic 10 title game, and that win should be enough to get the Rams into the NCAA tournament regardless of what happens in the title game. A loss to Saint Joseph’s is not going to look bad on their résumé, and I would guess that they are currently on the right side of the bubble right now. Getting the automatic bid would make Selection Sunday much less stressful, but they should be OK.
- San Diego State (KP: 37, RPI: 36, CBT: 11): Was Fresno State our first bid thief of the 2015-16 season? The Bulldogs beat San Diego State in the finals of the Mountain West tournament on Saturday night putting Steve Fisher’s club in an awkward position. SDSU has a terrific win over Cal on a neutral court, but that would be their only top 50 win on the season. They’ve beaten Fresno State and Long Beach State, but neither of those wins are going to move the needle as much as their loss to San Diego, owners of an RPI of 301. Will a 3-7 record against the top 100 be enough to overcome that?
- Temple (KP: 83, RPI: 60, CBT: 10): Temple is going to be sweating out Selection Sunday after losing to UConn on Saturday afternoon. The Owls have five top 50 wins and a 7-9 record against the top 100 — both solid numbers — but they only have one top 40 win, an RPI of 60 and two sub-125 losses. They should be OK, but it’s certainly not a guarantee just yet.
- LSU (KP: 76, RPI: 90, CBT: N/A): Is there anything more fitting than LSU getting relegated to the NIT with a 38-point performance in a horrid loss to Texas A&M?
- Georgia (KP: 65, RPI: 61, CBT: Next Four Out): The Bulldogs needed to beat Kentucky to get back into the conversation. They did not beat Kentucky.