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  1. #1
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    Duke MBB's 2014 NCAAT seed

    I always wanted to start a "vigil" thread, and the topic of seedings came up more than once during this week's games. Now that February is here, it seemed appropriate so I thought I'd take a shot. Earlier last week, Lunardi's bracketology had Duke as a #3 seed (trending up) in Raleigh. Jerry Palm had Duke as a #4 in Orlando (eeeew). Both will be updated this week.

    Duke has 9 games left. There are 3 plus-100 RPI teams that would be gruesome losses: @BC, @GT, VT. Nothing is a given in the ACC, especially on the road, but a team expecting a #3 seed or above can't lose those games. Let's eliminate them from the discussion.

    There are 3 games with teams in 50-100 RPI range: WF, MD, @WF. Again, Duke should be heavily favored, but over the years WF has been a traditional PITA above and beyond the talent level of their teams, especially in Winston-Salem. A loss at Wake wouldn't be shocking, especially if the team gets caught looking past that game to the regular season finale vs. unc three days later. A sweep would be best (duh), but splitting with Wake would require (imho) another signature win from the remaining three games.

    Here are the 3 games that will get all the attention: @unc, SYR, unc. Everyone is getting all wound up for the rematch in Cameron on 2/22, but be careful what you ask for - you might get it. Anyone who expects a Duke romp needs to calm down already; let's be conservative and call it a tossup. So that leaves the home-and-home vs. the dysfunctional but still dangerous Holes (current RPI 39). Sweeping those three would be a major major achievement and put the Devils in the conversation for a #2 or #1 seed, but I think a more probable result will be 2-1 or maybe even 1-2. (I do think Duke will win at least 1 of the 2 home games). Losing all three would not be disgraceful, but would certainly wipe out any momentum and it's better just to not go there.

    Therefore, probable outcomes for the 9 games:
    8-1: conf 14-4, overall 25-6
    7-2: conf 13-5, overall 24-7
    6-3: conf 12-6, overall 23-8

    If the team went into the ACCT with a 12-6 record, they might get caught in a tiebreaker logjam for the #4 seed in the ACC tournament, especially depending on how Clemson and MD finish. Any record better than that, there should be no doubt about a 2 or 3 seed in the ACCT. A win in the quarterfinals should prevent any slippage, with a chance to solidify the RPI position in the semis.

    Qualitative guesses:
    If Duke can reach the ACC finals with two or fewer losses only to unc or Syracuse, I'll guess that's worth a solid #2, and maybe a sniff at a #1.
    If Duke can reach the ACC semis with three or four losses, and no RPI +100 losses, that should be enough for a #3 and no worse than a #4.
    If Duke goes 6-3 or worse and and then loses in the first round of the ACC, then something has gone seriously wrong, and we're talking a #5.

    Next, we need to step outside the Duke bubble and see what else is going on with other teams contending for those seeds. Let me 'splain. No there is too much. Let me sum up. Duke needs Clemson to finish strong and ND to be more than mostly dead for a little extra RPI boost. But first, we have to kill Count Rugen.
    "Quality is not an option!"

  2. #2
    It seems to me that this is more than a little bit premature. We have not finished the first half of the ACC schedule. There is too much of the schedule yet to be played by all teams to have a meaningful discussion.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Indoor66 View Post
    It seems to me that this is more than a little bit premature. We have not finished the first half of the ACC schedule. There is too much of the schedule yet to be played by all teams to have a meaningful discussion.
    I thought "vigil" threads were premature by definition - that's the entire point, no? Ah well, least I crossed it off my bucket list... Next play!
    (P.S. I think we're exactly at the halfway point.)
    "Quality is not an option!"

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Indoor66 View Post
    It seems to me that this is more than a little bit premature. We have not finished the first half of the ACC schedule. There is too much of the schedule yet to be played by all teams to have a meaningful discussion.
    Technically we have finished the first half off the ACC schedule, but I agree it's a little early. Maybe after the first UNC game has been won.

  5. #5
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    Appreciate the breakdown. I think we'll be favored in every remaining regular season game except maybe Syracuse at home, but even then it should be close. But I care a lot more about winning the ACCT than the regular season. We've been in a "drought" by our own ridiculous standards, and I think winning it would put us ahead of Syracuse and UVA for the top seed out of the conference even if we finish third in the conference race.

    Overall I think we're a likely 2, with a chance at a 1 if we win out or possibly falling to a 3 if we suffer an unexpected loss.

  6. Perhaps this is me being overly optimistic, but I think duke will only take one more loss until the NCAA tournament and will be a 2 seed.

    That could be the Syracuse game or the unc road game, but I'm guessing it'll be the ACC tournament where as a 3 seed our guys will be exhausted in the final.

    I just think this team is battle tested. They've hit the bottom, learned from it and have rebounded with renewed spirit and energy.

    This is a team that is beginning to learn how to win even on bad shooting nights with offensive rebounding and generating turnovers. And when duke is hitting shots, we are nigh undefeatable.

    All we need to do is play a higher and more consistent level of defense like we did for a stretch before the Syracuse game. Do that and I'm going to feel great about our chances in the NCAA tournament no matter what the seed.

    This isn't like certain duke teams (eg circa Austin Rivers year) where you got the sense we were vulnerable to a bad shooting night or a bad matchup. For those teams you wished like heck we got as high of a seed as possible; almost as if because they needed it.

    If we can just play consistent, high level defense, I don't think this year's team is like that. This is a team that can take on all comers, 1 or 3 or 5 seed.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Richmond, VA

    This may be premature but...

    I like the analysis because once Duke plays 5 or 6 more games the seedings will be more clear but there will be less to discuss. So let me take a general stab at other teams in the mix.

    First, the ACC is being touted as being disappointing in the eyes of the media (underrated once again) so the ACC will probably get only one #1 seed and that would be Syracuse right now. So the best Duke can hope for is a #2 seed unless they beat Syracuse twice including the ACC tournament and take Syracuse's #1 seed.

    The other #1 seeds will be from the SEC (Fla), Arizona, Wichita State and SDSU. So four teams for three slots. The one that does not get a number 1 is obviously a #2. The three other #2s would be taken form this next group, Big Ten school (again considered to be the best conference), Kansas (presumably they win the Big 12), Villanova or Cincy. One of these drop to #3s and that is where Duke would likely end up.

    So pay attention to the following games:

    Villanova vs Creighton (this will deciede Villanova's fate);
    Cincy vs Louisville (this will decide Cincy's fate);
    Kansas vs Tx, OSU and Okla
    Mich State at Michigan
    Michigan at Iowa
    Fla at Ky and at home against Ky
    Ariz vs Stanford
    SDSU and Whicita State have has no one left on their schedule of any consequence;

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Los Angeles
    Besides this discussion being really quite premature, is it possible for us to have a discussion about an issue that involves the future, prediction, prognostication, or guesswork that doesn't have to be termed a "vigil?"

    So played.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkD83 View Post
    I like the analysis because once Duke plays 5 or 6 more games the seedings will be more clear but there will be less to discuss. So let me take a general stab at other teams in the mix.

    First, the ACC is being touted as being disappointing in the eyes of the media (underrated once again) so the ACC will probably get only one #1 seed and that would be Syracuse right now. So the best Duke can hope for is a #2 seed unless they beat Syracuse twice including the ACC tournament and take Syracuse's #1 seed.

    The other #1 seeds will be from the SEC (Fla), Arizona, Wichita State and SDSU. So four teams for three slots. The one that does not get a number 1 is obviously a #2. The three other #2s would be taken form this next group, Big Ten school (again considered to be the best conference), Kansas (presumably they win the Big 12), Villanova or Cincy. One of these drop to #3s and that is where Duke would likely end up.

    So pay attention to the following games:

    Villanova vs Creighton (this will deciede Villanova's fate);
    Cincy vs Louisville (this will decide Cincy's fate);
    Kansas vs Tx, OSU and Okla
    Mich State at Michigan
    Michigan at Iowa
    Fla at Ky and at home against Ky
    Ariz vs Stanford
    SDSU and Whicita State have has no one left on their schedule of any consequence;
    I don't necessarily agree with your analysis. If Wichita State and/or San Diego State lose a game or two (especially if they lose in their league tournaments), they drop to a two (or even a three, depending on the losses). Arizona just lost a key player. If they lose a couple games, not out of the question without Ashley, and then lose in their conference tournament, they have little chance at a #1. They'd probably keep a #2 under those circumstances, but it's not a lock. The Big 10 tend to beat each other up; you can almost guarantee another loss or two for both Michigan and Michigan State. If a surprise team wins the Big 10 tourney as well, Michigan State would still have a shot at a #1 but more likely a #2 (they'd have to have a really bad loss or two to drop to a #3) but Michigan would have an upward struggle to get a #2, with the likelihood being a #3. No other Big 10 team would seem to have a realistic shot at a #2, maybe Iowa if they don't lose more than another game and win the Big 10 tournament, but even that feels like a long shot. Cincinnati has to win out to have even a chance at a #2 and they still probably don't get it. If Kentucky sweeps Florida and neither win the SEC tournament, I can't see Florida as a #1, and if they lose one or two others (unlikely but possible), they might even drop to #3. Villanova has to win at least one of the Big East regular season and Big East tournament to get a #2, and maybe both. In my mind, if Syracuse wants a #1, they have to avoid a bad loss, lose no more than two of their three big road games (@Duke, @Pitt, @UVa), and then win the ACC tournament.

    On the other hand, if Kentucky splits with Florida and wins the rest of their regular season games, they'll be in the conversation for a #2, especially if they win the SEC tourney and maybe if they only get to the final game. If they run the table, UK has a shot at a #1. If Virginia either wins the ACC regular season or wins the ACC tournament, they'll be part of the conversation for a #2 as well. If they do both, they should be a lock for a #2. Same for Duke, but I'd also say if Duke wins the ACC tourney and comes in first or second in the conference standings, they have a shot at a #1. If Kansas wins out, they'll almost certainly be a #1. If they lose a couple games and then fall in the Big 12 tourney they might drop to a #3.

    As someone else noted, there are too many permutations to make any hard statements. That said, I don't think this thread is premature for discussion purposes.

  10. #10
    I want us to be a top-4 seed so we can play the first two rounds in Raleigh. There's little chance of UNC or NCSU being assigned to the same subregional, so the closer to home we can play, the better.

    Beyond that, honestly the matchups are more important than the seeding.

    Also: I don't think ANY seed is off the table for us yet, including a #1. If the season ended today we'd be a 2 or a 3.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matches View Post
    I want us to be a top-4 seed so we can play the first two rounds in Raleigh. There's little chance of UNC being assigned to the same subregional or NCSU making the tournament, so the closer to home we can play, the better.
    Fixed it for you.

    I also hope we get Wichita St as our #1 seed.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    Appreciate the breakdown. I think we'll be favored in every remaining regular season game except maybe Syracuse at home, but even then it should be close. But I care a lot more about winning the ACCT than the regular season. We've been in a "drought" by our own ridiculous standards, and I think winning it would put us ahead of Syracuse and UVA for the top seed out of the conference even if we finish third in the conference race.

    Overall I think we're a likely 2, with a chance at a 1 if we win out or possibly falling to a 3 if we suffer an unexpected loss.
    This. With the B1G and Big 12 beating the crap out of each other, he have such a strong chance at being a 2 seed. I think if we maintain course (win all but 1 in the remaining ACC competition and make it to the semi-finals / finals of the ACC tourney), we are guaranteed a 2 seed. If we win out, we have a great chance at a 1 seed. If we loss to a team not named Syracuse from here until the end of the reg. season, we're a 3 seed. Any more loses and our seeding falls.

    But Duke is improving every game. We looked incredible during 'Cus and I expect that loss will only add fire. I would hate to be facing us in the next couple of weeks.
    Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. - Winston Churchill

    President of the "Nolan Smith Should Have His Jersey in The Rafters" Club

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    Appreciate the breakdown. I think we'll be favored in every remaining regular season game except maybe Syracuse at home, but even then it should be close. But I care a lot more about winning the ACCT than the regular season. We've been in a "drought" by our own ridiculous standards, and I think winning it would put us ahead of Syracuse and UVA for the top seed out of the conference even if we finish third in the conference race.

    Overall I think we're a likely 2, with a chance at a 1 if we win out or possibly falling to a 3 if we suffer an unexpected loss.
    Agree winning the tournament is more important than the regular season--but if Duke loses more than one remaining regular season game there is at least some risk of finishing outside the top 4 seeds--which would mean having to start tournament play a round earlier. So it's of some importance.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkD83 View Post
    First, the ACC is being touted as being disappointing in the eyes of the media (underrated once again) so the ACC will probably get only one #1 seed and that would be Syracuse right now. So the best Duke can hope for is a #2 seed unless they beat Syracuse twice including the ACC tournament and take Syracuse's #1 seed.

    The other #1 seeds will be from the SEC (Fla), Arizona, Wichita State and SDSU. So four teams for three slots. The one that does not get a number 1 is obviously a #2. The three other #2s would be taken form this next group, Big Ten school (again considered to be the best conference), Kansas (presumably they win the Big 12), Villanova or Cincy. One of these drop to #3s and that is where Duke would likely end up.
    The conference arguments are weird this year. The Big10 was going strong, then Wisconsin/OSU vomited on themselves. The Big12 was next, but then ISU/OSU (top 10 before New Year's) have fallen apart a bit, while Texas has come out of nowhere. The Pac12 is strong in number (may get 7 bids), but 5 of those are right on the bubble and could slip off at any time. The SEC is just a mess. And the ACC is down in number, but may well have two #1 seeds if the chips fall correctly.

    For the seeding, it depends how you look at the numbers (or how you think the committee will look at the numbers). Teamrankings (which I think is pretty good), has WSU and SDSU as #4 seeds. They have 'Zona a lock for a #1, followed by Nova, then KU/Cuse/MSU battling it out for the final two. Duke is sitting there right after. I think the numbers are a little tough on WSU, and I would bet that the committee would go against that, as there will be pressure to push up an undefeated team to a higher seed. (I don't know if that means a #1 seed, but it could.)

    The Massey composite rankings have Zona-KU-Cuse-Nova as the four #1s, fwiw. They are slightly higher on WSU (#3 seed), but still low on SDSU (#4, potentially a #5).

  15. #15
    Ranked 11 this week,so now we are in the 3 seed range I gather. If we win out and reach the ACC tournament final game, it's not hard to see how we could get a 2 seed. Alternatively, it would probably take 2 losses to fall to a 4-5 seed. I think we're in pretty good shape, now all we need to do is keep improving our game and March will be a fun time to be a Blue Devil!

  16. #16
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    I think there's virtually no way an undefeated Wichita State doesn't get a 1 seed. The committee does not want to deal with the inevitable firestorm that would erupt if Wichita State is 33-0 and given a 2 seed. A potentially more interesting scenario is what would happen if they go undefeated in the regular season but lose in the MVC tournament (or, put another way, how many losses can the Shockers suffer, and when, and still end up as a #1).
    Just be you. You is enough. - K, 4/5/10, 0:13.8 to play, 60-59 Duke.

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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by pfrduke View Post
    I think there's virtually no way an undefeated Wichita State doesn't get a 1 seed. The committee does not want to deal with the inevitable firestorm that would erupt if Wichita State is 33-0 and given a 2 seed. A potentially more interesting scenario is what would happen if they go undefeated in the regular season but lose in the MVC tournament (or, put another way, how many losses can the Shockers suffer, and when, and still end up as a #1).
    It's always hard to say because it's so dependent on what other teams do, but I think the magic number is "1". You're spot-on that there's just no way the committee can seed them below a 1 if they're unbeaten, but as soon as they lose I think that discussion is over (particularly since, given their schedule, just about any loss they have will be a "bad loss").

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by pfrduke View Post
    I think there's virtually no way an undefeated Wichita State doesn't get a 1 seed. The committee does not want to deal with the inevitable firestorm that would erupt if Wichita State is 33-0 and given a 2 seed. A potentially more interesting scenario is what would happen if they go undefeated in the regular season but lose in the MVC tournament (or, put another way, how many losses can the Shockers suffer, and when, and still end up as a #1).
    Any loss WS suffers knocks them out of #1 seed consideration, because it would be a bad loss. If, otoh, they finish unbeaten, I can't see how the committee could deny them a 1 seed. The media (ESPN), loves KU and Sparty, so one or both of them will end up with a one (the press doesn't report the news anymore, it makes the news).

    If Duke wins out, it's hard to see us not getting a one seed. But it's going to be difficult to catch Syracuse for the top seed, and ranked 2nd or 3rd could mean three brutal games to win the ACC tourney. Syracuse or Duke get a one seed; no way they both do.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Eakane View Post
    The media (ESPN), loves KU and Sparty, so one or both of them will end up with a one (the press doesn't report the news anymore, it makes the news).
    Can you provide examples of this? I think the media loves the Big10 in general, and would like to give a #1 seed to the best team there, but that's different from them loving MSU and only MSU.

    And ESPN loving KU? That's news to us. KU has the #1 RPI and Kenpom's #1 noncon SOS (by a mile). Those are both (mostly) objective measures. 3 of their 5 losses are to teams in the Top 6 of the AP Poll, another to #15 on the road, and another to a Top 15 team on the road before they lost their best player. There has been some love lately because KU won their first 7 games in an incredibly tough conference, before losing over the weekend. The last ESPN power rankings (published before last weekend's games) have KU at #5, which is right in line with where most computers have/had them.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by TexHawk View Post
    Can you provide examples of this? I think the media loves the Big10 in general, and would like to give a #1 seed to the best team there, but that's different from them loving MSU and only MSU.

    And ESPN loving KU? That's news to us. KU has the #1 RPI and Kenpom's #1 noncon SOS (by a mile). Those are both (mostly) objective measures. 3 of their 5 losses are to teams in the Top 6 of the AP Poll, another to #15 on the road, and another to a Top 15 team on the road before they lost their best player. There has been some love lately because KU won their first 7 games in an incredibly tough conference, before losing over the weekend. The last ESPN power rankings (published before last weekend's games) have KU at #5, which is right in line with where most computers have/had them.
    Let's face it, KU and MSU are year in and year out, very good teams. Their programs are top notch and so are their coaches. They recruit with the very best and hold their own. So yes, they get love from the media and deservedly so. GoDuke!

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