These TieBreakers Stink!

Because of the unbalanced schedule, the tiebreakers discussed by Brett Friedlander stink.

Now here are the possible real-life tiebreaker scenarios:

State and Virginia tie for fourth place: Bye goes to UVa because of its head-to-head win in the only regular season meeting between the teams. Tiebreaker I;

UNC and State tie for fourth place: Still to be determined. If the Tar Heels lose to Duke, the Wolfpack would get the spot by virtue of its 1-1 record against the Blue Devils (UNC would be 0-2). If the Tar Heels beat Duke and still end up with the same record as State, they would get the bye on the strength of its 1-1 record against Virginia (the Wolfpack went 0-1 against the Cavaliers). Tiebreaker II;

UNC, State and Virginia three-way tie: State would be the odd team out because of its combined 1-2 record. UVa would get the No. 3 seed because of its 2-1 cumulative record with UNC, at 2-2, would be the No. 4 seed. Tiebreaker III.

State is at home against Boston College tonight. UNC and UVa play on Thursday, with the Tar Heels on the road at Clemson and the Cavaliers at home in what figures to be a pivotal game against second-place Duke.

While I still have an issue with Tiebreaker I because State had to play UVA in their house, and did not get to play them at home, I can accept that tiebreaker much easier than I can accept Tiebreakers II and III.

If UNC and State tie and both go 1 and 1 against Duke, UNC wins the tiebreaker because they got to play UVA at home where they won. Further, in Tiebreaker III, UVA again lucks out because they did not have to play State in Raleigh.

There needs to be a better way to determine seed than head to head play when the teams being considered do not play the others the same number of times.

Procedure III

(III. If three or more teams are tied, the combined record of each team against the other two teams involved is used to break the tie. After this procedure, if two teams remain tied, procedure (2) is followed.)

needs to go to Procedure II

(II. If the two tied teams split their regular season games, the tie is broken by comparing each team’s records against the team occupying the highest position in the standings, and then continuing down until one team gains an advantage.)

in the instance where three teams tied and did not play each other an equal number of times, but then again, that does not seem much better when looking at the top five teams in the conference standings as of now. UNC had to play Miami twice, Duke twice, State twice and UVA twice while State played only UNC and Duke twice and UVA played only UNC twice. Final analysis is that UVA in a three way tie with State and UNC gets fifth place for ACC tournament seeding because their schedule was just too easy!

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