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Somebody Please Stop the Stupid

Is it possible that the NCAA Men's Basketball Selection Committee could be considered even more inept?

You bet.

In an afternoon submission to, Andy Katz is reporting that Craig Littlepage, my personal arch nemesis, and his band of functional illiterates were prepared to turn the NCAA Tournament into CBS' personal nightmare.

In shedding light on the mind-boggling inclusion of Utah State into the field of 65, Katz states:

Even though it ended in a loss, Utah State's performance against Nevada in overtime in the WAC tournament title game was the final impression needed to push the Aggies into the field of 65 in one of the more surprising selections of the year, has learned.

The selection committee watched Utah State and, after seeing the Aggies nearly pull off the upset at Nevada on Saturday night, was convinced the Aggies should be in the field, a source with knowledge of the selection process confirmed.
Basically, what it came down to for Littlepage and Company to include Utah State in the field was simply to be on national television during the committee's meetings in Indianapolis. That's pitiful, especially when all Utah State needed to do was make a conference tournament final where they had the chance to tussle with a team that would garner only a five-seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Which reminds me. Didn't Cincinnati tussle with an ultimate five-seed in the Big East Tournament? And wasn't Cincinnati's resume light years more impressive than Utah State's? Obviously, I've overthought this process. It's too bad the selection committee didn't.

Speaking of failing to use the gunk betwix one's ears, Katz drops these other tidbits which are sure to dazzle the mind to the point of implosion:

• One of the main reasons Air Force got in the field was that the Falcons were the No. 2 team in the Mountain West, ranked as the No. 8 conference.

• One of the last teams not to make the field was another mid-major: Western Kentucky. The committee looked strongly at the Hilltoppers, regular-season champs of the Sun Belt. Western Kentucky, which lost to South Alabama in the conference title game, had an RPI of 55, a strength of schedule of 116, a 1-2 record against the top 50, a non-conference SOS (strength of schedule) of 29, and a 7-4 road record. Meanwhile, the NIT placed Western Kentucky as a 6-seed in the South region.

• The team that seemed to move the most around the board was Pitt, which settled at No. 5 in the Oakland region.

• Cincinnati was off the board by late in the week. The Bearcats didn't get out of the first round of the Big East tournament after Syracuse's Gerry McNamara beat them with a 3-pointer with a half second left.
I'm going to keep my comments brief on these points else I might break the internet with the amount of hate latent in the sentences that follow.

As I noted in a previous essay, I thought that one of the major deficiencies in Air Force's resume was its lack of big wins, both in and out of conference. Apparently the selection committee somehow thought otherwise, believing that finishing second in the Mountain West (eighth in the conference RPI) and failing to advance out of the first round of that conference's post-season tournament was more impressive than finishing eighth in the most competitive conference ever and losing on a miraculous heave at the buzzer in the first round of the Big East Tournament.

That is absolutely unacceptable.

As for the Western Kentucky comments Katz made, they will go down in history as the legacy left by Craig Littlepage. How Western Ketucky goes from potential NCAA participant to NIT also-ran is incredibly laughable. The fact that the Hilltoppers were somehow on the board when Michigan and Cincinnati weren't is all the more reason to believe that the NCAA needs to revamp how the selection committee is organized and the process used to place teams into the brackets and how they are to be seeded once included.

I'm not saying that there is a conspiracy afoot, but I'm not saying there isn't one either.

4 Responses to “Somebody Please Stop the Stupid”

  1. # Anonymous Ian

    Dunno...but I wouldn't look past the fact that WKU beat UVA pretty soundly this year.  

  2. # Anonymous Matt Glaude

    Let's not confuse having a good day to being outright talented.

    We both saw Syracuse football look remotely mediocre against UVA in the Dome this past year. Of course, that ship sailed quickly.

    What is sad is that WKU's best games this year were the win over UVA (at home), a "W" against UAB, and a five point loss to Arizona on the road.

    That's it! And the committee thought this was almost enough.

    Hell, when a team gets drubbed 76-49 to Troy, I'm not even thinking NIT. I'm thinking NAIA.  

  3. # Anonymous Ian

    I'm not saying it's justifiable; hell, UVA's profile is probably better. As long as Pete Gillen keeps eating steak with his buyout money, I'm not a Littlepage guy, even if he wants to fuck up Billy Packer for realz.  

  4. # Anonymous Matt Glaude

    I do have to confess, the way Littlepage has manned up to Packer and Natz is terrific. Anytime somebody wants to smack around Billy for being a dope, I have no problems.

    As for Gillen, is there a more hilariously tragic story than his? He goes from ressurecting Providence, to failing miserably at Virginia, to third-string analyst on fourth-string CSTV. He is a walking, talking illustration of how to ruin a good thing.  

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