FanPost

Rootability on Semi-Final Saturday

State started yesterday as an 8-seed per Lunardi, and generally an 8 or 9 everywhere (i.e., I looked two other places.) ESPN hasn't updated yet, but Jerry Palm moved the Pack from 9 to 8. Which is useless.

It seems like a win over Miami would guarantee State getting off that 8/9 line and into a much more favorable place to make the Sweet 16, but what do we need in general? I'm looking at both possibilities - what one more win would do, and what winning the tournament would accomplish. Miami is going to be top-10 RPI regardless of today's result; UNC would be top 25 if they reach the final, Maryland is up to 62, but I doubt they would reach top 50 with just one more win. But outside the ACC, we are mostly pulling for teams on the 4-7 lines to lose. (I don't care about 8 and below - State isn't dropping below the 8/9 game, and no one else at 8 has as much opportunity to help themselves.)

Big 10 - would like Indiana to beat Wisconsin, although after the Badgers beat Michigan yesterday State may not be able to catch them anyway. State is not passing Michigan State or Ohio State in the bracket.

Big East - after the Georgetown win, Syracuse is probably locked into a top four seed, so it doesn't matter.

SEC - Depends on how you feel about UVa and Maryland. If you want more ACC teams in, pull for Florida over Vandy in the final, as Ole Miss and Bama losing today would help. Florida is the only team with any hope of a top 8 seed, and they are probably going to be ahead of State even if they lose today and the Pack wins out.

PAC-10 - Probably want UCLA to lose, as they are in the 6/7 range (not sure how yesterday's injury will affect things). Oregon around 8/9 but doesn't have anything like a Miami-type win opportunity.

Mountain West - Definitely want New Mexico (consensus 3-seed) to beat UNLV (5/6 range).

Atlantic 10 - UMass over VCU is a two-fer - a win by a previous Wolfpack opponent, and a loss by a team ranked slightly ahead of State. St. Louis is a consensus five, while Butler ranges from five to seven - I guess pull for St Louis, as Butler may be easier for State to pass. UMass winning the whole thing might be our best outcome (but definitely not Virginia's.)

Conference USA - Memphis is overwhelmingly the favorite, but only around a six on the seed, so a Southern MIss win could help State.

No other places that could affect the top half of the bracket. But A&T is playing for a bid (in a conference where Norfolk St and Central were a combined 31-1 in the regular season, and both lost in the first round.) And in the Big Sky, Montana and Weber State were a combined 37-3 in the regular season (I assume two of the losses were against each other) and are 50-11 overall. Only one will survive.

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