What a huge slice of baloney. What a steaming hunk of junk. What a prodigious, stinkin’-assed pile of damned hooey.
It would be one thing if, over the years, the various NCAA tournament selection committees managed to define a specific set of criteria and steadfastly stick to one approach to building a tournament field, but instead those criteria always seem to be moving this way and that, depending on where the eyes of a dozen attention-deficit-addled adults land on a given day.
For this baseball committee this year, apparently non-conference strength of schedule took on added importance. Never mind that geography, climate, and practicality play larger factors in baseball scheduling than they do in other sports, of course.
And doesn’t it always feel like the people on these committees are building cases after reaching a certain conclusion, or deciding on one particular arbitrary cutoff, like, say “we aren’t going to put 10 teams from one league into the field.” Stuff like that.
So they end up having to make an argument on what feels like an eighth-tier tiebreaker to validate a decision. Y’know, hey, Ole Miss won two series against NCAA teams, and NC State only won one. All this time and energy gets spent into establishing quadrants for evaluation and suddenly we’re drilling way beyond simple win totals. It makes the entire process appear arbitrary.
If they want arbitrary, I can do arbitrary! NC State won six games against teams that are hosting (ECU x 2, Louisville, Virginia Tech, Miami, UNC). Ole Miss won four (Auburn x 2, A&M, USM). NC State played 40 quad 1+2 games to Ole Miss’ 36, and had the better record (22-18 vs. 18-18). NC State didn’t lose a league series to a school with a losing record. Ole Miss lost two such series.
Why couldn’t the ol’ selection committee dart board land on any of those criteria? Who knows. Maybe next time.