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Iowa's Chance to Dance (VERY LONG)

  • I'm going to preface this by saying its fairly long, and 100% my opinion. I'm really solid in my thoughts that Iowa's magic number is 4 wins to get in. They must win their way in, everything else will take care of itself. I was bored earlier and decided to look forward and talk about Iowa's very slim chance at the NCAA tournament, as well as who to root for in the Big Ten. I'd also like to add that Iowa's tournament resume is on par with the rest of the bubble teams. I think the bubble is fairly weak this year.

    Iowa's predicted Big Ten finish: 7th place 9-9 conference record (20-11). I believe they will knock off Illinois at home this Tuesday and then get revenge on Nebraska March 9th to close out the regular season.

    This would have Minnesota in 6th alone with a 10-8 record as they should be able to get wins at Nebraska and at Purdue. Though Minnesota has struggled off and on on the road, when looking at their losses, they haven't been bad with the exception of Northwestern. I think winning these two games is a fair expectation even though both teams can be pesky. Locked into the tournament by beating Indiana earlier this week.

    Illinois likely loses at Ohio State (yes, I know they won big the first time, I don't see it happening again). This has them finishing the year with 2 losses, and taking 8th place in the Big Ten with a 8-10 record and 21-11 overall. I still see them as a lock to the tournament because of the number of good wins they have, plus a solid RPI.

    Predicted Big Ten Final Standings
    1) Indiana 26-5 (14-4)
    2) Michigan St 24-7 (13-5) note: tie break over Wisc & Mich
    3) Wisconsin 22-9 (13-5) note: tie break over Mich
    4) Michigan 26-5 (13-5)
    5) Ohio State 22-8 (12-6)
    6) Minnesota 22-9 (10-8)
    7) Iowa 20-11 (9-9)
    8) Illinois 21-11 (8-10)
    9) Purdue 13-18 (6-12)
    10) Northwestern 14-17 (5-13) note: I think the game vs PSU is a toss-up now, I'll give NW the edge.
    11) Nebraska 13-18 (4-14) note: if PSU beats NW, Nebraska moves up to 10th (head to head tie break)
    12) Penn State 9-21 (1-15) note: they have last locked up already

    Now let's pretend all this has happened, which is very likely. I have Michigan winning against MSU and IU at home plus at Purdue. Michigan St finishing with wins over Wisconsin and NW at home. Wisconsin finishing with wins vs Purdue and at PSU. I'm not going out on any outrageous limbs here, these are pretty safe bets. Iowa will have 2 out of the magic 4 wins needed to make the tournament. Good thing there are two games left for the Hawks to play in the Big Ten Tournament. The schedule for the tournament, I also added my predicted finish for teams, looks like this (linked for viewing pleasure):

    Game 1: Illinois (8) vs. Purdue (9), 11 a.m., BTN
    Game 2: Ohio State (5) vs. Penn State (12), 1:30 p.m.*, BTN
    Game 3: Iowa. (7) vs. Northwestern (10), 5:30 p.m., ESPN2
    Game 4: Minnesota (6) vs. Nebraska (11), 8 p.m.*, ESPN2
    -I think all the low seeds hold on. If Nebraska ends up as the 10 seed, Iowa will still have a great chance to advance.

    Friday, March 15, 2013
    Game 5: Indiana (1) vs. Illinois (8), 11 a.m., ESPN
    Game 6: Michigan (4) vs. Ohio State (5), 1:30 p.m.*, ESPN
    Game 7: Mich State (2) vs. Iowa (7), 5:30 p.m., BTN
    Game 8: Wisconsin (3) vs. Minnesota (6), 8 p.m.*, BTN
    -Iowa has two very winnable games in the BTT. The Penn State upset of Michigan was a blessing to Iowa fans, and I just now noticed that. It will allow Iowa to avoid playing either IU or Michigan in the BTT (hopefully). Iowa's most favorable matchups are MSU and Wisconsin in this round. If Iowa gets the upset here against MSU (or possibly Wisc) they should be in the tournament.

    Saturday, March 16, 2013
    Game 9: Game 5 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner, 12:40 p.m., CBS Sports
    Game 10: Game 7 Winner vs. Game 8 Winner, 3 p.m.*, CBS Sports

    Sunday, March 17, 2013
    Championship Game, 2:30 p.m., CBS Sports

    Given everything I have laid out here, Iowa's RPI will likely be upper 70s (78ish) by the time the BTT starts. Illinois is 32 and Nebraska is 103. I could see a 13 point jump out of these two wins, though I'm not an RPI genus so this is a rough estimate. The win against Northwestern won't do much as they are 140th. A match-up with MSU while tough, is what Iowa wants. They should have won the only meeting this year and I doubt the Hawks forget how they let that game get away from them (same can be said for the blunder at Wisconsin). Michigan State has an RPI of 7, Wisconsin's is 24. A win over 7 would give Iowa a nice bump of probably 12-15 spots or so. That leaves Iowa in the mid to low 60s in RPI. They'd have 3 top 25 wins, 4 good wins, and only 2 bad losses. ESPN's last 4 in are Temple, Villanova, Ole Miss, and Boise State. Iowa would have a better resume than Temple, BSU, and Ole MIss. There is no way they would be left out IF this happens. Every game is a must win right now. Any loss before the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament is an automatic NIT bid.

    TL;DR - just win, baby!

    Edit: Ole Miss lost tonight to Miss St, likely ending their chances.

    This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by UI2015 16 months ago

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    "I was brought in here to change the culture. I'm going to coach with passion" - Fran McCaffery.

  • Great post here, and thanks for the breakdown.

    Personally, I think Iowa would have a pretty good shot of getting in by finishing 9-9 and then making the finals of the B1G tourney. But IMO, it'd still be iffy if Iowa loses in the semifinals. There are bound to be multiple regular season conference champs in mid-major conferences that lose in the conference tourney, but still have a good enough resume to make it in as an at-large. Every time that happens, assuming they lose to a team that wouldn't have made it in as an at-large, that takes away a spot for a bubble team. It'd definitely be possible for Iowa to make it in under this scenario, but I still think it's less than 50% due to the soft nonconference schedule.

  • I think Illinois gets in over Iowa even if Iowa finishes ahead of them.

  • If they needed one more game, it'd likely be against Wisconsin or Minnesota, and that's still not a bad match up for Iowa. They can control their destiny this year, it's just a matter of if they actually will or not.

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    "I was brought in here to change the culture. I'm going to coach with passion" - Fran McCaffery.

  • Yeah, Illinois is definitely in right now.

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    "I was brought in here to change the culture. I'm going to coach with passion" - Fran McCaffery.

  • Nice breakdown, I don't really know what it will take for them to get in. When a team is at a point like the Hawkeyes and they want to control their own destiny, best bet is to just win the B1G Tournament...easier said than done.

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  • UI, looks like we agreed, but I gave it the short short version, lol.

  • Yeah, I was unable to sleep well last night because of the adderall I took in the morning, so I needed to kill some time, and it seemed like breaking all of that down would be interesting.

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    "I was brought in here to change the culture. I'm going to coach with passion" - Fran McCaffery.

  • Absolutely. No question.

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  • Very true. I think this team has proven it can beat just about anyone on any given day, especially on a neutral court.

  • sinking But I'm still hoping.

  • 2015-

    You are a student there, yes? If so, you must be either a communications major looking at sports reporting or an accounting major with a big interest in sports. (I totally dismiss and reject the medication hypothesis for your VOTH essay.)

    Excellent post! Ruffle up the feathers in the Hawks Nest next game, would you please?

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    GO HAWKS!!!

  • Yeah, I'm on track to graduate in 2015. I'm actually currently undecided with an interest in Pharmacy, so I'm taking the classes to get into Pharmacy school. I'm likely switching majors relatively soon but I'd like to keep it in science so I'm not behind my graduation pace. Though, majoring in sports writing has always been something I wanted to do.

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    "I was brought in here to change the culture. I'm going to coach with passion" - Fran McCaffery.

  • Once you get your College of Pharmacy degree, it will be tough to go back for a major in sports writing. Not sure of the requirements for a VOTH Honorary Doctorate Degree, but I am guessing perhaps 10,000 posts for a Masters, and 20-25,000 posts for the Doctorate. Perhaps Dean Todd Wormer could give you some academic counseling that may help.

    This post was edited by goldendog 16 months ago

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    GO HAWKS!!!

  • a nice and diligent original post. i agree with each of your picks from here on. i do add, though, that the chances of a string of likely events all turning out as predicted is not as likely as intuition suggests. the chances of a 70% freethrow shooter making even two in a row is only 49%. still, no matter the specifics. if the hawks win their next two and find thenselves in the b10 tnmnt semi's, they have a chance.

    now, i think they'll need to win the tnmnt to qualify, they might edge in with a second place finish. the selection committee, i think, tries to judge teams not conferences. they say this annually. usually when a conference gets 6, 7 selectees it is because the rpi rankings and records force that outcome, not because the committee predetermined that the b10 would get, say, 8 slots because of its strength. ui might be able to get its rpi high enuf by winning the semi-final game--but i kinda doubt it. not sure that second would do it.

    honestly, i do think that assuming a certain number of spots for the b10 is inconsistent with the process and might lead to a false prediction.

  • Agreed....and I, too, have been guilty of using math, history, and my version of logic to create an equation of how things could work out for my beloved Hawkeyes (mostly on the "old forum") is done for fun, usually ending up "for not"

    But I love the spirit of those who have the energy....

    To share my lack of appreciation for math, I offer the following "stolen" quip:

    Dear Algebra,

    Please stop asking us to find your x. She's gone. She's not coming back... and don't ask y.