and... i like them? I think I like them.
2012-13 basketball schedule
In the wake of today's 2013-2014 B1G Men's Basketball schedule release and the dislike that came with it, I thought of a new way to formulate a conference schedule. I tried to keep it balanced where the high-level teams play more high-level teams and the low-level teams play more low-level teams so there's no repeat of Wisconsin's/Ohio State's favorable one-offs.
I introduce to you tier scheduling. Taking the final standings of last year, I broke up teams into four three-team tiers, Tiers 1, 2, 3, and 4 obviously.
Now, once these teams are in tiers, it's time to set up which tiers will play the other tiers how many times. It is cumbersome to explain it in words so I will just show what I have in my spreadsheet
There might be a better way to balance this out, but I feel this does a decent job making sure good teams play more good teams with the occasional bad team and vice versa.
So what would this mean for Michigan this year? Here's a hypothetical schedule based on their tier 2 standing
When it came to the one-offs I picked teams with less of a recent history with Michigan so that's why they play Indiana once out of tier 1 but OSU and MSU twice, then Minnesota and Purdue once out of tier 3 but Illinois twice, etc.
I did this somewhat hastily so if there's any apparent flaws please point them out but I think I have everything squared away.
Obviously this kind of scheduling is too late because 1. 2013-2014 schedule is already done and 2. this is the final year of having 12 teams. But this was a fun "What If?" scenario I wanted to share.
A fifth and final look at the remaining schedules:
Take a look at joeyb's write-up in the board section about rooting interests- he does a good job at describing potential outcomes. Seeding will likely be a hot mess...
Who has the hardest schedule?:
|GAME 17||GAME 18|
|INDIANA||Tue- OSU||Sun- @ MICH|
|MICHIGAN||Wed- @ PURD||Sun- INDIANA|
|MICHIGAN ST||Th- WISC||Sun- NW|
|OHIO ST||Tue- @ INDIANA||Sun- ILLINOIS|
|WISCONSIN||Th- @ MSU||Sun- @ PSU|
In the past I have made scoring systems to rank upcoming schedule etc.- think with two games left that is not necessary. OSU has the toughest in my mind because @Indiana. Indiana has a tough schedule as well- but has co-champ locked down. Wisconsin has two road games, but @MSU and @PSU is easier that Indiana at home and @Purdue in my mind- but I think they will likely lose @MSU. MSU has the easiest schedule left in my mind- two home games and NW- but they are on a skid...
Thoughts on remaining teams:
Indiana: Already guaranteed at least a split. They do have two tough games- home against Ohio State and away in Crisler. Everyone else is rooting for them to lose both- because if not- we have an undisputed champ. OSU will be a tough game, but I don’t think it is probable Indiana loses its last home game. I think it is still 50-50 against us. I think they are the better team- but we are very solid at home- and played them well in Indiana. They have will be playing to wrap up a 1 seed regardless of Big Ten Tournament as well.
Michigan: Well last week was weird… PSU loss really sucks no way around it. Have to respect PSU playing hard all year- and glad that didn’t go undefeated- but really not glad what it means for a title chance and that the win was against us. 50-50 against Indiana, and at Purdue is looking quite winnable- but with our road struggles it gives me pause.
Michigan State: Let’s see if MSU’s slide continues. Northwestern has fallen apart- and at home that should be an easy W. I personally hope they beat Wisconsin because I don’t want Wisconsin having a shot a shared title- although I think Indiana has that taken care of (let’s hope I’m wrong).
Ohio State: Last week they looked very out of it- only to have Michigan blow a gimme, MSU go on a big slide, and Indiana give them some semblance of hope. At Indiana is huge for everybody- and rooting for OSU will be cringe worthy- but my god that would be huge. If we beat Purdue and OSU pulls the upset Sunday could be one hell of a night.
Wisconsin: At MSU is a tough one and I covered that above. Let’s hope PSU can get win number 2 (or 3?) as well. Wish we had Wisconsin at home- don’t think they would keep us too close at home. If we play them in Big Ten Tournament I would not be too worried… but seriously f*** Wisconsin.
|15-3||14-4||13-5||12-6 or Worse|
Indiana has wrapped up a split- and is clearly in great shape for it to be a solo champion. I say only 10% chance they lose to OSU and us with having so much to play for, being so consistent, and having a home game. And for non-Indiana teams 2 losses is all anyone cares about for the boys from Bloomington.
I say MSU has the best odd at staying with 5-losses. Wisconsin at home will be tough, but NW should not be.
We have the next best bet because I think we will take care of business at Purdue- but that could be too optomistic given our road struggles of late.
Wisconsin has at PSU, so if they can beat MSU in EL they have a decent shot at stay with 5 L's.
OSU plays at Indiana and will paly Illinois at home- with Illinois wanting to be at 500 and make the tournament- so they have the longest odds.
Let's hope OSU wins (I know... gross) so Sunday will be interesting! And let's hope we take care of business on the road at Purdue!
Sometimes it seems like the Big Ten is just so crazy analyzing it is pointless- and I hope this is also one of those times- because that would mean the year ended in crazy fashion- and that is needed for a split-championship!
I know I just wrote a diary yesterday.... I hope this one is appreciated!
Below is the remaining schedules for the top-6 BigTen teams:
|INDIANA||MICHIGAN||MICH ST||OHIO ST||WISCONSIN||MINNESOTA|
|Game 10||AT ILL 2-7||OSU 7-2||MINN 5-4||AT UM 7-2||IOWA 3-6||AT MSU 7-2|
|Game 11||AT OSU 7-2||AT WISC 6-3||AT PURD 4-5||IND 8-1||UM 7-2||ILL 2-7|
|Game 12||NEB 2-8||AT MSU 7-2||UM 7-2||NW 4-6||AT MINN 5-4||WISC 6-3|
|Game 13||PUR 4-5||PSU 0-9||AT NEB 2-8||AT WISC 6-3||OSU 7-2||AT IOWA 3-6|
|Game 14||AT MSU 7-2||ILL 2-7||IND 8-1||MINN 5-4||AT NW 4-6||AT OSU 7-2|
|Game 15||AT MINN 4-5||AT PSU 0-9||AT OSU 7-2||MSU 7-2||NEB 2-8||IND 8-1|
|Game 16||IOWA 3-6||MSU 7-2||AT UM 7-2||AT NW 4-6||PUR 4-5||PSU 0-9|
|Game 17||OSU 7-2||AT PUR 4-5||WISC 6-3||AT IND 8-1||AT MSU 7-2||AT NEB 2-8|
|Game 18||AT UM 7-2||IND 8-1||NW 4-6||ILL 2-7||AT PSU 0-9||AT PURD 4-5|
|v. 8-1 IND||N/A||HOME||HOME||ROAD + HOME||N/A||HOME|
|v. 7-2 UM||ROAD||N/A||ROAD + HOME||ROAD||HOME||N/A|
|v. 7-2 MSU||ROAD||ROAD + HOME||N/A||HOME||ROAD||ROAD|
|v. 7-2 OSU||ROAD + HOME||HOME||ROAD||N/A||HOME||ROAD|
|v. 6-3 WISC||N/A||ROAD||HOME||ROAD||N/A||HOME|
|v. 5-4 MINN||ROAD||N/A||HOME||HOME||ROAD||N/A|
|v. 4-5 PUR, 4-6 NW, 3-6 IOWA, 2-7 ILL||HOME- PUR DNP NW HOME IOWA ROAD ILL||AT PURD DNP NW DNP IOWA HOME ILL||AT PURD HOME NW DNP IOWA DNP ILL||DNP PURD ROAD + HOME NW DNP IOWA HOME ILL||HOME PURD AT NW HOME IOWA DNP ILL||AT PURD DNP NW AT IOWA HOME ILL|
|v. 2-8 NEB, 0-9 PSU||HOME NEB||DNP NEB ROAD + HOME PSU||AT NEB DNP PSU||DNP NEB DNP PSU||HOME NEB ROAD PSU||AT NEB HOME PSU|
The top six teams all have 9 games left in conference- I showed all of those games. Then I separated the BigTen into the top 6, the sub-500 teams who can surprise teams, and Nebraska and Penn State who should not surprise anyone no matter where the game is being played. Now I will analyze the home-away breakdown for each sub-group of teams before analyzing each team separately.
One game advantage will be critical since they have the hardest schedule left in my opinion. While MSU and OSU both play one more game against a top-6 team, Indiana plays 4 on the road, including closing out against Michigan. They do have 3 home games against the bottom half, but the game at Illinois could be a trap after a tough fought Michigan game. If they win the conference they will have really earned it, since almost half the remaining games are playing on the road at OSU, MSU, MINN, and UM.
Average schedule amongst the top six. Easier than Ohio State’s or Michigan State’s and Indiana’s most likely- which is very good for our chances of winning the conference. Only Minnesota and Wisconsin play less amongst the top-six, but they are two games and one game behind us respectively. Fortunately we have one more home game against the top-six than roadgames- a nice combo with also having less games against top teams. Plus we play PSU twice and Illinois at home. At Purdue is our sleeper game in my opinion.
At least 4 of the 6 games against the top-six are at home, other than that there is little to be too pleased about for the Spartans. Minnesota, Michigan, Indiana, and Wisconsin at home are all tough and Ohio State and Michigan on the road will be tough to get. Plus they play Purdue on the road also. They do not play Penn State in the last 9 games, and even the “easy game” of Nebraska is away… poor Sparty. A game behind Indiana and tied with Michigan and Ohio State it will be very hard for them to win the regular season conference crown.
Like Michigan State they have more than half their games (six) against the top-six teams. They play the top two teams (Michigan and Indiana) on the road as well as Wisconsin. Their home top-six are another against Indiana, and then Minnesota and Michigan State. They do not play either Nebraska or Penn State either for easy wins. As is the case with Michigan State there is a lot working against Ohio State. That could all change however if they beat Michigan next game. If they lose to Michigan they will be two back of Indiana (assuming Indiana wins at Illinois) and one game behind us and Michigan State (if they beat Minnesota at home). If they get the upset they can claw their way to a regular season championship, if not the odds get pretty long.
2 back of Indiana they have little hopes to start with. Jumping 4 teams will be a monumental task. Their style of play creates matchup issues but they lack the elite level of play of the teams above them in my opinion. In their favor are only 4 games against the top-six. Home against Michigan and Ohio State and away against Michigan State and Minnesota. No more against Indiana, home against two 7-2 teams, and road against a 7-2 and 5-4 team. They have the easiest schedule of the top-six teams- but not easy enough to be a serious threat to win the regular season in all likelihood.
Should they even be in the top group? Are they going to start off great every year and collapse in conference? They have a lot of work to do if they want to win- and as was the case with Wisconsin they have an easier schedule remaining than the top-four teams. At Michigan State and Ohio State and home against Wisconsin and Indiana. If they don’t win all four their hopes fade away… but at least they exist… for now.
Minnesota is too far gone to be a serious threat. Wisconsin, despite an easier path, needs to much to fall in place in order to win it. Michigan has an easier path than Michigan State or Ohio State, our fellow 7-2 conference mates, and Indiana plays 4 top teams on the road. Too be honest all four have pretty similar odds looking at the schedule- so it will come down to who wins the bigger games- particularly on the road. If Michigan takes care of business against Ohio State our chances rise. If Michigan State loses to Minnesota at home as well after the next conference game it may be Michigan and Indiana fighting for the title with MSU and OSU dropping to long shots. It also seems like there is a very good chance of a split again this year.
My current odds:
I think there is a 1/3 chance there is an outright champ and a 2/3 chance its split. It could be split with two, three, or four teams, so my odds for a split are funky- and maybe mathematically impossible but they are rough estimates anyway.
Michigan and Indiana are so close- the fact Indiana closes at Michigan (that will be such a classic game if things shape up as they seem to be) and that they play more road games against top opponents leaves me thinking Michigan has a slightly better chance of a title in any capacity- and equally as likely to win outright. MSU and OSU are half as likely given tougher schedules than Michigan and a game behind Indiana. They are also less likely to get a split in my opinion, but both have good odds. Wisconsin has almost no chance to win outright, only an easy schedule in comparison keeps some hope alive. They seem possibly in the hunt for a split title- kind of like ours last year with everything needing to fall in place. Minnesota is too far back now and can only hope the top teams beat up on each other enough so everyone gets dinged and they take care of a schedule that’s easier than the top 4 teams.
Via U-M Media Relations:
Michigan to Host N.C. State for 2012 Big Ten/ACC Challenge
May 14, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- In conjunction with the Big Ten, the ACC and ESPN, the University of Michigan men's basketball team announced Monday (May 14) that it will host N.C. State for its 2012 Big Ten/ACC Challenge match-up on Tuesday, Nov. 27, at Crisler Center.
All Challenge games will be televised on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU, with platforms and times being announced at a later date. After expanding to a 12-team event last year, following the addition of Nebraska to the Big Ten, the 2012 Challenge will be played over a two-day period, Tuesday and Wednesday, Nov. 27-28.
Each day of the Challenge will be split evenly with three home and three road contests for each conference. The first day of play will feature U-M's home contest against N.C. State, Minnesota hosting Florida State, and Indiana facing North Carolina. Big Ten road games will be Northwestern traveling to Maryland, Iowa heading to Virginia Tech, and Nebraska going to Wake Forest.
The second day will feature Illinois hosting Georgia Tech, Penn State playing Boston College, and Wisconsin taking on Virginia in Big Ten home games. The three remaining games will be Ohio State traveling to Duke, Purdue at Clemson, and Michigan State heading south to face Miami (Fla.).
The Big Ten has claimed the last three Commissioner's Cups after an 8-4 series win in 2011. Overall, the ACC has won 10 of the 13 Challenges.
2012 ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Tuesday, November 27th
Minnesota at Florida State
North Carolina at Indiana
N.C. State at Michigan
Maryland at Northwestern
Iowa at Virginia Tech
Nebraska at Wake Forest
Wednesday, November 28th
Purdue at Clemson
Ohio State at Duke
Georgia Tech at Illinois
Michigan State at Miami (Fla.)
Boston College at Penn State
Virginia at Wisconsin
Michigan in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge
1999 -- vs. Georgia Tech (W, 80-77)
2000 -- Wake Forest (L, 71-60)
2001 -- no participation
2002 -- no participation
2003 -- N.C. State (W, 68-61)
2004 -- at Georgia Tech (L, 99-68)
2005 -- Miami (Fla.) (W, 74-53)
2006 -- at N.C. State (L, 74-67)
2007 -- Boston College (L, 64-77)
2008 -- at Maryland (L, 70-75)
2009 -- Boston College (L, 58-62)
2010 -- at Clemson (W, 69-61)
2011 -- at Virginia (L, 70-58)
Big Ten/ACC Challenge Results
1999 -- ACC (5-4)
2000 -- ACC (5-4)
2001 -- ACC (5-3)
2002 -- ACC (5-4)
2003 -- ACC (7-2)
2004 -- ACC (7-2)
2005 -- ACC (6-5)
2006 -- ACC (8-3)
2007 -- ACC (8-3)
2008 -- ACC (6-5)
2009 -- Big Ten (6-5)
2010 -- Big Ten (6-5)
2011 -- Big Ten (8-4)