Saturday, March 9, 2013

Top Twenty (3/9)

10-2Ohio St.31.6
12Michigan St.31
14NRMiami (FL)30.7
16-5Oklahoma St.30.7

You'll note the rating scale and other significant changes.  I was getting bored with the old Top Twenty, so I've adjusted the Prediction Machine to use a different rating algorithm, to give a bit of a different look at the teams.

Regardless of the rating algorithm, Florida and Indiana remain the class of the field, although Louisville closes the gap with the new rating.   Louisville has fallen in and out of favor with the pundits, but hasn't had a bad loss since 1/22 against Villanova.  Duke and Pittsburgh are other teams moving up, and the big losers here are Wisconsin (losers of two straight, including Purdue), Oklahoma State (lost to Iowa State), Minnesota (lost to Nebraska!?) and Georgetown (lost to Villanova).  Georgetown's hopes for a #1 seed rest on winning today at Syracuse and then winning the Big East tournament.  The lesson here, if there is one, is don't lose late-season games to weak opponents.

Several surprise teams appear in the bottom of the list, including Missouri, Creighton and Arizona.  Despite 6 losses, Missouri is a surprise #2 in the SEC and has looked strong recently, including a win over Florida.  Barring an unlikely loss to Indiana State, Creighton looks set to win the MVC.  Arizona, meanwhile, lost both Los Angeles games and is an increasingly distant 4th in the Pac-12, so this rating is a bit of a mystery.  This may be a case where the Prediction Machine is being influenced by strong halftime results.  It will be interesting to see how Arizona performs in the Pac-12 tournament.

Saturday Top Ten Predictions

Loyola Marymount @ #1 Gonzaga:  Gonzaga by 10
#3 Duke @ UNC: UNC by 3
#4 Kansas @ Baylor:  Kansas by 1
#17 Syracuse @ #5 Georgetown: Georgetown by 1
Clemson @ #6 Miami (FL): Miami by 6
#24 Notre Dame @ #8 Louisville:  Louisville by 8
#9 Kansas St @ #13 Oklahoma St: Oklahoma St by 4

Today's games feature a couple of mismatches between the AP's rankings and the PM's rankings, I'll be interested to see how they turn out!

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