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Random Formula Rankings: Feb. 15


AP Danny Chan La

Looking at today’s top-25 rankings, one might wonder why the AP poll can be so different from the Coaches poll. The answer? Coaches don’t do the research that the writers do, and frankly, have other things to spend their time on. So, as the Lobo writer, I have made a “cheat sheet” for the coaches to use the next time they consider ranking a team in the top ten based largely on the team’s name.

I took into account six teams with the following coaches poll rankings: #9 Gonzaga, #10 Georgetown, #13 Butler, #14 Brigham Young, #15 New Mexico, and #16 Wisconsin. These teams were chosen out of question of their ranking. Each team was rated based on their overall record, record in last 10 games, conference RPI ranking, team RPI ranking, record vs. RPI top-100, road record, record vs. ranked opponents, and strength of schedule. Once the information was in I ranked each team 1-6 (1 being the best) in each category and averaged their total. Remember, with 1 being the best number, the lower the team’s average the better.
An example will not be given with this formula as I will be showing the results and numbers for al six teams.       
Team
Record
Last 10
C.R.
vs RPI 100
Road
Vs. top 25
SOS
RPI
Total
Rank
New Mexico
23-3
9-1
7
11-2
8-2
5-0
50
9
15
1
Georgetown
18-6
6-4
2
10-5
5-4
6-2
3
8
26
2
Butler
23-4
10-0
13
5-4
11-1
1-3
64
16
29
3
BYU
23-3
8-2
7
8-3
6-3
0-0
129
23
30
4
Wisconsin
19-6
7-3
5
9-5
3-4
5-2
14
18
32
5
Gonzaga
21-4
9-1
14
9-3
6-2
0-2
58
19
33
6
 
Flaws in the Formula
One of the most difficult things to determine in college basketball is who ranks higher between a team with a great record from good conference and a team with a good record from a great conference. Obviously the argument here is between New Mexico and Georgetown. Based on these numbers, New Mexico is clearly the best of the teams from lower conferences, while Georgetown has had one of the toughest schedules in the nation. Looking carefully at the results, each team has some kind of weakness, or hole in their tournament resume, except New Mexico. Wisconsin can’t get the job done on the road, Butler and Gonzaga are playing in conferences with fewer challenges and BYU didn’t schedule tough enough games in the non-conference. Georgetown has the worst overall record out of these six teams, but has also played a grueling schedule, so where does that pin them against the Lobos? Fairly even I would say. Georgetown has had a few letdowns, losing to South Florida, Marquette, Rutgers and Old Dominion, but have also beaten some of the best teams in the nation in Villanova and Duke, not to mention victories over Butler, Pittsburgh, UConn and Temple.
I, for one, am not surprised to see Georgetown ahead of New Mexico in the Coaches poll, but BYU and Butler? I can’t find a single reason to put Butler ahead of New Mexico, except that they have been a household name for the past couple of years. It’s the same with BYU. UNM beat BYU, yet are still ranked below them because coaches around the league are familiar with the name Jimmer Fredette. The real travesty though, Gonzaga being ranked the highest out of all six of these teams. Sure they haven’t played the hardest schedule, but they have a great record. Oh what’s that you say? New Mexico has a better record? And a more difficult schedule? Take five minutes to look at some info next week coaches.     

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