Are the RPI Rankings An Accurate Measure of Basketball Team Strength?

Submitted by mGrowOld on February 19th, 2011 at 11:07 PM

Everybody knows that the sacred RPI rating plays a huge role in determining who is tournament selection worthy and who is not. As of now Michigan is ranked 61st in the most current RPI rankings.  The Belmont Bruins are ranked 53rd with their impressive 24-4 record built by playing THIS schedule:

 

M …
Date Opponent Opp. RPI Rk Results
  11-16   at  Tennessee  16-10 (6-5) 26  76-85  L
  11-17   vs  Arkansas St.  12-14 (8-5) 203  93-60  W
  11-22   vs  Marist  4-24 (3-13) 313  102-74  W
  11-23   vs  Winthrop  10-14 (8-8) 198  71-44  W
  11-29   at  Tennessee St.  9-15 (8-8) 222  87-72  W
  12-02     Mercer  12-15 (10-7) 246  89-67  W
  12-04   at  Vanderbilt  19-6 (7-4) 14  76-85  L
  12-07     Middle Tenn. St.  13-13 (9-5) 197  88-87  W
  12-16     Kennesaw St.  7-19 (6-11) 324  87-60  W
  12-18   at  Troy  7-17 (6-7) 249  98-63  W
  12-20   at  Alabama St.  7-16 (6-6) 320  66-53  W
  12-23   at  Tennessee  16-10 (6-5) 26  65-66  L
$  12-30     Miami (OH)  13-12 (9-3) 97  83-72  W
  01-03   at  Fla Gulf Coast  6-19 (3-12) 298  83-51  W
  01-05   at  Stetson  7-20 (5-12) 301  70-53  W
  01-08     North Florida  10-18 (7-10) 172  91-59  W
  01-10     Jacksonville  17-8 (12-5) 116  81-50  W
  01-13     Lipscomb  15-10 (11-6) 110  88-52  W
  01-15     Campbell  11-15 (6-11) 252  90-55  W
  01-21   at  South Carolina-Upstate  4-23 (3-14) Mm 317  67-62  W
$  01-23   at  E. Tennessee St.  18-10 (14-4) 100  72-62  W
?  01-25   at  Lipscomb  15-10 (11-6) 110  64-73  L
  01-28     Fla Gulf Coast  6-19 (3-12) 298  89-56  W
  01-30     Stetson  7-20 (5-12) 301  82-64  W
  02-03   at  Jacksonville  17-8 (12-5) 116  76-70  W
  02-05   at  North Florida  10-18 (7-10) 172  69-67  W
  02-12   at  Campbell  11-15 (6-11) 252  78-57  W
$  02-17     E. Tennessee St.  18-10 (14-4) 100  68-58  W

Look at the RPI rankings of their vanquished foes.  How is it possible that beating this collection of cupcakes garners a team an RPI ranking higher than ours?  What is wrong with this picture?????

And did they really play Tennessee twice?

Comments

bronxblue

February 20th, 2011 at 3:14 PM ^

I have much less an issue with a 24-4 team with some recent success in the tourney having a chance getting in over a mediocre Cincy or WVU team getting in because they play in the BE. RPI is imperfect, but I do think it gives a decent snapshot of how good teams are.
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