I have had a history of bashing the committee for their selections or non-selections in the past. Whether it was the gross injustice of not taking Hofstra or Missouri State in 2006, or taking Arizona the past two years when the Wildcats had no business being in either one, or the exclusion of St Mary's, the NCAA often failed come Selection Sunday. And thus, why I call them the No Clue At All.
But this year, no complaints on teams omitted. They selected Utah State and UTEP, though they were both two of the last teams in the tournament. Utah State and UTEP were selected over the likes of Virginia Tech, Illinois and Mississippi State, among others. I detailed the bubble possibilities yesterday.
Of course you had those who were upset about being snubbed. Seth Greenberg was on ESPN and stated "There were a lot of teams with a similar profile." Really? Didn't know that other teams had a 339 non conference strength of schedule. And that was definitely the reason the Hokies were left out. Utah State at least had a huge non conference win over BYU, something Virginia Tech didn't have. I thought UTEP might have been left out, but the committee gave the Miners credit for the 17-1 conference record and making the conference finals.
I was of course surprised by Florida making the tournament. I certainly thought they were on the bubble and losing in the quarters to Mississippi State didn't help matters. But the win over Michigan State on a neutral site, seemed to matter more than the 1-8 vs. the RPI Top 25 or their 6-6 record over the last ten games. Illinois or Mississippi State were the teams snubbed out to due Florida's inclusion.
Now while the Committee did a great job with the overall selection of teams, they did a bad job with seeding. Temple deserved to be a three seed, not a five. Tennessee getting a sixth seed was also far too low. Cornell and Siena were also way too low as far as seeds, but Siena gets a good draw with Purdue. The Big Red almost beat Kansas and they were very good when I saw them win the Holiday Festival at MSG. Butler should have been a four seed but then they would have drawn Murray State, who will knock off that soft Vanderbilt team in the first round.
Seeds that were too high - Villanova did not deserve a two seed the way they finished the last month of the season. Vandy isn't worthy of a four seed and they will find out the hard way when they lost to Murray State. California has absolutely no business being an eight seed. But that's ok too when Louisville sends the Bears home in the first round.
On Tuesday, I will give you my picks for the tournament. I think there will be a fair share of upsets and I think some mid major teams are going to do well. Very well indeed.