Since we are kicking off conference play on Thursday, I guess it is time to see how well we do at predicting our conference play. I will not even try to order all the teams at this point, but I wanted to get the board's feedback on what our conference record will be and how many games will it take to win the conference?
Last year, 5 loses won the conference, but I am not sure that is a safe bet again because of Indiana's schedule. I can't see them losing a conference game in Jan, Feb's hardest games are UM, @Illinois, @Ohio, @MSU and @Minn with their March being @UM. I think they can win out at home and I don't know that I see them losing more than 3 of the above 6 which puts a share of the B1G at a 15-3 conference record with a possibility for 14-4. A strong home court advantage at Assembly will work in their favor.
In order to do match that, we would need a strong run of winning the games we should and being road warriors to get out of Jan- @Ohio, @Minn, @Illinois and Feb- @Indiana, Ohio, @MSU and Mar- MSU, Indiana with a 5-3 record which I think is achievable, just seems pretty hard. This leaves no room for error, injuries or a stumble with a lower team.
If we beat Indiana the last game of the year, we will win the conference with 15-3, losing that game puts us second at 14-4. I don't know that I am enough of a believer in Tubby Smith to put Minny into the above conversation to think he can get to 15-3 with his schedule, maybe 14-4, but I think they are a likely 5 loss or worse team.
What are your thoughts on how this will shape up?