As long as the SEC keeps up their nonsense about how deep their football league is, I'm going to keep saying "MSU only lost 5 conference games because EVERYONE BE SO GUD YA'LL"
The B1G Debate
This will ultimately be decided in the tournament. I say it's the second strongest conference and I'll be shocked if the big ten doesn't have at least one team in the final four.
If you had to guess which conference the 2013-2014 national champion will come from, which conference would you guess?
I'd go with the ACC (mainly because of Duke, Syracuse, and Virginia), but the Big Ten is right up there for me. I just don't see a huge drop-off between the top-ranked teams and the place where a bunch of top Big Ten teams sit.
A Michigan, Wisconsin, or MSU could easily make a run this year, in my opinion, and Iowa or OSU are firmly in the "it's possible" camp.
I'd agree with this. My prediction would be for the ACC to win it all, but the Big-10 isn't far behind.
I just think the way Duke, UNC, and UVA are playing right now, and Syracuse is a very tough team to beat.
The Big-10 may have the same number of teams with a shot at the Chip, but I'd say their strength is stronger than ours. I'd take a trio of Duke, UVA, and Cuse over Michigan, Wisconsin, and ________ (up in the air between MSU and Iowa I guess...)
They got blown out by an average at best Tennessee team. I just think their is a lot of parody and not an elite team out there this year.
While I'd disagree that the ACC is a parody, I'll argue that there is plenty of parity in said conference. THERE you go.
They also blew out just about everyone in the ACC including Syracuse last night. That Tennessee game is no different than UM losing to to UNC charlotte earlier this year. one road loss loss doesn't define a team.
That was way back. They have a very solid coach, are very sound, and are playing great ball right now.
I fear the Big 10 will come off as weak in the upcoming tourney.
Michigan could certainly make a run, but we've seen what an effective big man can do.
Wisconsin may be the hottest team in the league but Bo Ryan could do them in against a fast paced/good shooting team.
OSU will crumble if forced to play offense.
MSU just might pack it in due to a terrible team attitude.
Minnesota is average.
Nebraska could lose in the first round.
I don't think the B1G will do well this March.
Kings of Parody
B1G is behind the ACC and probably on par with the B12 this season.
The B1G has a lot of depth top to bottom but that is overrated IMO. Nobody cares how good your 6-8th best teams are. In football or bball. Sure its great in BBall do to RPI, SOS, and all the metrics used for seeding. But at the end of the year when judging conferences nobody looks at your 6-8th best teams.
Its all about how good your top tier is and for that reason I give the nod to the ACC bc their top tier is better than the B1G this season. Last year with MSU, IU, OSU, and UM all legit final four contenders that was not the case.
This season only UM really has a chance for a final four run but we can also get bounced by a hot team in the sweet 16 due to our lack of interior O (we had McGary last tourney) nad ok D. I think last year we could whether a cold shooting night better bc Burke could just take over and McGary could bang down low. This year we don't have that.
So overall, I think a league is judged by its top tier, top 4 if you will. Hopefully the B1G can get 4 sweet 16 teams and have 1 make the final four (UM). Hard to be the best conference if you don't have a final four team. IMO, its much more likely for the B1G to miss out on the final four than the ACC.
You may be correct in that's how many view it, but is that the way it should be? No contend that the perception of the top tier depends on how good the middle tier is. If the middle tier is good, then the top tier is less likely to waltz through conference play week to week. While Cuse, Kansas, Zona may be elite teams, should UVA get credit for not only their weak schedule through the poor middle tier of the ACC? Conversely, Wisc beat the Sec champion (and 1 seed), the ACC champion, and another top-15ish type team in St. Louis. But they can't get trough the B1G without at least 5 losses. Yeah, teams change throughout the season, but that's gotta mean something for the conference as a whole.
You use Wisc to sort of debunk that but you must admit that is a very rare scenario where a team beats two conf champs out of conference then finds a way to lose 5 conference games itself....just a weird scenario.
I mean I don't care how you spin it IU, northwestern, and Minnesota are not very good teams and they all beat Wisc. You'd never say those three are on par with UVA or Florida would you? Even if Wisc beat UVA and Florida.
Plus I think the big issue is its very hard to compare "middle tier" teams which by definition are going to have a decent amount of losses. How do you compare 9-11 loss teams across conferences objectively? How good can you really be with that many losses. If we we are saying the B1G 9-12 loss teams (middle tier) are "good" then by definition we are now saying the Big Ten has 9-10 "good teams". I just don't by it that a conf can have that many "good teams" and still think it has any elite teams. Elite teams would not have lost that many times to allow a conf to have 10 "good" teams.
I think being good top to bottom is great for a conference and actually helps B1G teams in the tourney as they are more battle tested. I just think it doesn't mean much in terms of perception of the conference as a whole.
In football I feel the same way. The SEC #6-7 teams are almost always better than the B1G or any other conference but who cares if they win some bowl game before Jan 1st. I roll my eyes at SEC fans bragging about their 6th best team just like I do B1G fans talking about their 6th best bball team that will probably lose opening wknd of the tourney and be forgotten. Nobody cares.
In football, its all about new years day bowls and the BCS. Win those (esp BCS) and your conference perception goes through the roof. I feel like making elite 8 is like winning a BCS bowl (mainly due to the random nature of 1 and done NCAA tourney..ie matchups). Pretty much every program would consider an elite 8 trip or BCS win a great season. Outside of a couple heavily favored teams each season (Bama in football, loaded Kentucky or Duke team in Bball).
I think it's pretty clear that the supposed bottom 5 teams (Neb, PSU, NW, Ill, Pur) are AS A WHOLE, better than last year. I addition, the top 5 (OSU, MSU, M, Wisc, Iowa) are a bit worse (again, as a whole).
Now, are the bottom 4-5 teams having better records this year due to their own improvement or the downturn of the top teams? Probably both, and what that means is that the conf is probably a bit worse than last year and certainly perceived to be a lot worse.
Just look at who was drafted to the NBA from the top B1G teams last year (and who stayed ie G Harris, McGary, GRIII). Much more talent at the top at a player level for the B1G last year then this year. IU lost a ton, UM lost a lot, OSU lost its best stuff.
Thats why the bottom of the B1G looks better this year. The top is just weaker. Remember UM was never outside the top ten all season last year in the polls...
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|http://i.turner.ncaa.com/dr/ncaa/ncaa7/release//sites/default/files/imag...); background-position: 0px 0px; background-repeat: no-repeat no-repeat;">||13||3||.813||23||5||.821||Lost 1||8||6-3||6-2||7-0||0-0|
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The chart came out wierd but you can find the data at the NCAA web site.
Honestly, the conference is strong but teams like OSU and MSU just aren't that good right now, and while MSU kinda, sorta has the injury excuse, OSU always stunk but just played a horrible early schedule to get to 15-0. It's a well-coached conference lacking in star power, and so it feels like a step below last year. At least with SEC football, the teams at the top are great; UM and Wiscy are probably the best teams right now, and I don't think anyone would say they'd be surprised if neither made it past the Sweet 16.