In NCAA, Might Makes Right, Which is Wrong



Bad enough that the six BCS conferences have a stranglehold on college football. They’ve also somehow seen to it that they dominate the NCAA basketball tournament.

I don’t know what the mission of the NCAA tournament selection committee may be, but the criteria obviously tips things in favor of the power conferences.

Look, if you live in the Midwest you cannot tell me the Big Ten deserves seven teams in the NCAAs. Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin are all in the tournament? Hooray for mediocrity!

Look, I don’t know if Arizona is better than St. Mary’s or Creighton. But I do know Arizona was 19-13, lost five of its last six games, had an RPI of 62, and was 9-9 in the Pac-10.

The Pac-10, which wasn’t even as good as the Big Ten, has six teams in the NCAAs.

Arizona, which is in its 25th-straight NCAA tourney, doesn’t belong in this one. It’s taking the spot of a mid-major, and it’s a joke.

“The picture is very clear that the opportunity to go through the door for us is not as big an opportunity as for the BCS programs,” Davidson coach Bob McKillop said. “The margin for error is ever so slight.”

The big boys say they play the killer nonconference schedules and the mid-majors don’t, but how is a San Diego State going to play a killer schedule unless it’s suicidal? BCS teams sure aren’t going to go to San Diego.

Northern Iowa got into the NCAAs solely because it won the Missouri Valley Conference tourney. A 20-win season and co-championship of the regular-season meant nothing. Creighton won 26 games and shared the Valley regular-season crown with UNI, and gets the NIT as its reward.

That’s garbage.

Maryland was 7-9 in the ACC, but gets into the NCAAs at 20-13 overall. Why? Because of its strength-of-schedule.

Well, that’s more garbage. I’ve said it forever, and I’ll say it again. You shouldn’t get an at-large berth in to the NCAAs if you lose more than you win in your conference.

You’re playing for a national title when you couldn’t eke out a .500 record in your own league? Forget that. Go to the NIT and try to improve for next season.

The tournament selection committee always is represented by schools and conference large and not as large, but the chairman always seems to be from a power league. This year it’s SEC Commissioner Mike Slive.

They’ve rigged college football to get all the money, and they put criteria in place to favor the big-conference schools when it comes to the NCAA basketball tourney. Only four of the 35 at-large berths went to non-BCS schools.

George Mason reached a Final Four a few years ago. It would serve the superpowers if a mid-major won the whole shooting match. Better yet, how about a Final Four of Gonzaga, Siena, Virginia Commonwealth, and, what the heck, Northern Iowa?

It would be the greatest thing in the history of college basketball, and better yet, it would take money out of the superpowers’ pockets. Then they would have to change the criteria again.

Which, if you’re 15-17 Iowa, wouldn’t be all bad.


4 responses to “In NCAA, Might Makes Right, Which is Wrong

  1. Im loving the site. Keep up the good work 🙂

  2. But I thought the NCAA men’s BB tournament was the model for how to crown a national champion? It’s blasphemy to say it’s flawed.

    OK. Now that I’ve taken my tongue out of my cheek…

    My BIL were discussing the selection yesterday. A key problem is the criteria for who gets in seems to change every year, based on who the committee is. One year it’s overall record. The next year it’s who’s playing well right now. This year it seems to be those non-conference wins in November were what pushed the “bubble” teams like Arizona, Michigan and Minnesota into the tournament.

  3. arizona is a head scratcher. mid-majors get killed because of schedule but would az., md. or any big 10/12 team play at creighton, wichita state, etc.?

  4. Huh? College basketball is filled with tournaments in November and December on neutral floors. Why can’t the mid-majors play them then? Siena went to the tourney in Orlando, played 3 big boys in 3 days.

    What about Gonzaga & Memphis? What’s wrong with proving yourself on the road first?

    Look at Arizona…they beat Kansas & Gonzaga. What mid-major did that?

    It’s not flawed…the mid-major teams that didn’t make the cut aren’t that good. Period.

    And most of the mid-majors that have made noise with upsets…won their conference tournaments.

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