Final Bracketology

I’ve been doing a pre-NCAA selection version of Bracketlolgy for several years now. I have more uncertainty this season than any other about what the committee will do. A few years back, when USCHO created the Pairwise Rankings, they did an accurate job of predicting the NCAA field, because the committee basically did the same thing. But the term “look beyond the numbers” has come up the past few years, meaning that more and more subjectivity has entered into the equation. Instead of treating the criteria equally, some were given more weight then others. Also, small differences in some criteria between teams were not given as much consideration as larger ones in other criteria.

Then there’s the consideration of cost of flying teams, which has a big affect on first round pairings and at worst case may cause one team to be selected vs. another. In case you forgot, the primary criteria are:

  • Win Percentage
  • Quality of Wins
  • Head-to-Head Results
  • Record Against Common Opponents Within Region
  • Record Against Ranked Teams

For the past six seasons, the finals have been held in the East, and in each of those cases, only one team has been flown from the West. This has resulted in at most three Western teams getting into the tournament. This year, the finals are in the West, and the NCAA will be flying at least two Eastern teams there. They have to, because there are four leagues with Automatic Qualifiers (AQs) in the East plus Pool B, which will also be an Eastern team. There’s no way to play all of those teams down to one team. The question that will dominate the Bracketology is: Will they fly three teams West?

Let’s look at the numbers. The follwoing teams are in based on winning an AQ:

ECAC East – Babson

ECAC Northeast – Mass-Dartmouth

SUNYAC – Fredonia

NESCAC – Middlebury

MIAC – Bethel

NCHA – St. Norbert

Pool B, which goes to a team from a conference not eligible for an AQ will go to Manhattanville, no doubt about it. The real job of the committee will be to pick the three other at-large teams. Teams in the running are Oswego, Neumann, Norwich, UW-River Falls, UW-Stout, and UW-Superior.

Based on the NCAA regional polls done prior to this weekend, we had:

East:

1. Mass-Dartmouth (won this weekend)

2. Manhattanville (won this weekend)

3. Oswego (did not play)

4. Norwich (lost)

5. Neumann (lost)

West:

1. St. Norbert (won this weekend)

2. UWRF (did not play)

3. UW-Stout (did not play)

4. UW-Superior (did not play)

Let’s look at the individual comparisons of the various teams:

Neumann vs Oswego

WIN      0.7000  0           0.8200  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.8400  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP    11- 3- 3  1         10- 3- 2  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  0          4- 2- 2  1

============================================

PTS              2                   2



Neumann vs Wis.-River Falls

WIN      0.7000  0           0.7857  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.5000  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  0          6- 4- 0  0

============================================

PTS              1                   1



Neumann vs Wis.-Stout

WIN      0.7000  0           0.8148  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.6071  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  1          4- 4- 1  0

============================================

PTS              2                   1



Neumann vs Wis.-Superior

WIN      0.7000  0           0.7500  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.7778  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  1          7- 5- 0  0

============================================

PTS              2                   1

============================================



Neumann vs Norwich

WIN      0.7000  0           0.7600  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.4000  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     6- 1- 1  1          4- 2- 0  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  0          8- 2- 0  1

============================================

PTS              2                   2



Oswego vs Wis.-River Falls

WIN      0.8200  1           0.7857  0

QOW      9.8400  1           9.5000  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     4- 2- 2  1          6- 4- 0  0

============================================

PTS              3                   0



Oswego vs Wis.-Stout

WIN      0.8200  1           0.8148  0

QOW      9.8400  1           9.6071  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     4- 2- 2  1          4- 4- 1  0

============================================

PTS              3                   0



Oswego vs Wis.-Superior

WIN      0.8200  1           0.7500  0

QOW      9.8400  1           9.7778  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     4- 2- 2  1          7- 5- 0  0

============================================

PTS              3                   0



Norwich vs Oswego

WIN      0.7600  0           0.8200  1

QOW      9.4000  0           9.8400  1

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     4- 2- 0  0          5- 2- 1  1

RNK     8- 2- 0  1          4- 2- 2  0

============================================

PTS              1                   3



Norwich vs Wis.-River Falls

WIN      0.7600  0           0.7857  1

QOW      9.4000  0           9.5000  1

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     8- 2- 0  1          6- 4- 0  0

============================================

PTS              1                   2



Norwich vs Wis.-Stout

WIN      0.7600  0           0.8148  1

QOW      9.4000  0           9.6071  1

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     8- 2- 0  1          4- 4- 1  0

============================================

PTS              1                   2



Norwich vs Wis.-Superior

WIN      0.7600  1           0.7500  0

QOW      9.4000  0           9.7778  1

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     8- 2- 0  1          7- 5- 0  0

============================================

PTS              2                   1



Wis.-River Falls vs Wis.-Stout

WIN      0.7857  0           0.8148  1

QOW      9.5000  0           9.6071  1

H2H     2- 0- 0  1          0- 2- 0  0

COP    18- 5- 1  0         19- 2- 2  1

RNK     6- 4- 0  1          4- 4- 1  0

============================================

PTS              2                   3



Wis.-River Falls vs Wis.-Superior

WIN      0.7857  1           0.7500  0

QOW      9.5000  0           9.7778  1

H2H     1- 1- 0  0          1- 1- 0  0

COP    16- 4- 1  0         16- 4- 1  0

RNK     6- 4- 0  1          7- 5- 0  0

============================================

PTS              2                   1



Wis.-Stout vs Wis.-Superior

WIN      0.8148  1           0.7500  0

QOW      9.6071  0           9.7778  1

H2H     1- 1- 0  0          1- 1- 0  0

COP    16- 3- 2  1         15- 4- 1  0

RNK     4- 4- 1  0          7- 5- 0  1

============================================

PTS              2                   2

Whew! Based on all that, I think Oswego and UWRF are in. That leaves one team left…Stout, Norwich, Neumann, Superior. Norwich actually stands up pretty well against Neumann, but not so great against any of the others. Superior doesn’t fare as well, but has the whole consipracy theory angle, since they are the host school. I’m changed my mind on this one and can’t find a way for the committee to justify this, so UWS is out.

That leaves Neumann and UW-Stout.

Neumann vs Wis.-Stout

WIN      0.7000  0           0.8148  1

QOW     10.1852  1           9.6071  0

H2H     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

COP     0- 0- 0  0          0- 0- 0  0

RNK     7- 4- 4  1          4- 4- 1  0

============================================

PTS              2                   1

Stout has the better winning percentage but has played an easier schedule. The teams did in fact meet head-to-head this season (Neumann won 4-3 in the semifinals of the MSOE Thanksgiving Tournament) but the committee isn’t supposed to consider it, since it was an inter-region game.

Here’s where I think the travel may come in. Pick Neumann and you have to fly three teams. Pick Stout and you have to fly two teams. Plus, the NCAA has seemed to put more weight on winning percentage. For that reason, my prediction is UW-Stout.

So now we my predictions for seeds and pairings:

1E Manhattanville

2E Mass-Dartmouth

3E Oswego

4E Babson

5E Middlebury (close with Babson)

6E Fredonia

1W St. Norbert

2W UW-River Falls

3W UW-Stout

4W Bethel

Play-in Round:

Fredonia at Oswego

Middlebury at Babson

Quarterfinals:

Fredonia/Oswego at Manhattanville

Babson/Middlebury at Mass-Dartmouth (yes, I think the Corsairs can host in their rink)

Bethel at St. Norbert

Stout at River Falls

And on to Superior.

We’ll know in a few hours how wrong I am.

84 COMMENTS

  1. Le’ts see–BC, BU, BC…I guess it’s BU’s turn to crown yet ANOTHER Boston team as national champs. Maybe that’s why the Midwest and West play so many early games. That is unless any of the easy earlies are against real teams like the 2 above and, in any given year, Maine or NH. Long live the East.

  2. Le’ts see–BC, BU, BC…I guess it’s BU’s turn to crown yet ANOTHER Boston team as national champs. Maybe that’s why the Midwest and West play so many early games. That is unless any of the easy earlies are against real teams like the 2 above and, in any given year, Maine or NH. Long live the East.

  3. I guess its to much to ask for the Hockey East blog to be about Hockey East and not a Boston team. Two weeks in a row that we’ve heard nothing about the other teams in HE. I mean, not taking anything away from BU’s start but who did they beat over the weekend? “Their Back” might be a more appropriate title for an article about Maine’s sweep, , , yes, sweep, of #2 North Dakota. Not only did they sweep but they dominated. This writter seems to have a fascination with BC and BU. Its unfortunate because the national champion may very well come out of HE again this year and it might not be either of those teams. I guess the good news is that nobody will see them coming because nobody want’s to talk about them.

  4. I guess its to much to ask for the Hockey East blog to be about Hockey East and not a Boston team. Two weeks in a row that we’ve heard nothing about the other teams in HE. I mean, not taking anything away from BU’s start but who did they beat over the weekend? “Their Back” might be a more appropriate title for an article about Maine’s sweep, , , yes, sweep, of #2 North Dakota. Not only did they sweep but they dominated. This writter seems to have a fascination with BC and BU. Its unfortunate because the national champion may very well come out of HE again this year and it might not be either of those teams. I guess the good news is that nobody will see them coming because nobody want’s to talk about them.

  5. yeah I definitely agree with HE Fan, I think the Boston biased in Hockey East needs to ease just a bit. I would be willing to wager Maine takes it to both schools this year. afterall, they added some scoring punch to the already potent lineup and have shown more consistancy in net, compared to last year already. Did BU lose to Maine and Maine took BC into OT in HE finals last year??? Thats what I thought. Stop with the bias already!!

    • there doesn’t appear to be any rhyme or reason to these HE articles in regard to when they come out or what the subject will be. in years past, the HE blog would cover a few different areas and not just one team.

      as for whoever willing to bet that maine takes it to BC this year? maine has the potential to be a very good team, hopefully an NCAA team, and i also think they’re better than BU. but take it to BC? slow down.

      • In past years, USCHO had one Hockey East column a week, which would come out late Thursday night. The new schedule for the D-I conferences is: a Monday blog post recapping events from the weekend; a Tuesday blog post highlighting some topic from the conference; a weekly column which publishes on Thursday morning; and a Friday blog post with picks for the upcoming weekend. Those are the minimum — a conference columnist might add other posts more frequently. USCHO did this so that there would be fresh content from the writers throughout the week, rather than just on late Thursday night/Friday morning.

  6. yeah I definitely agree with HE Fan, I think the Boston biased in Hockey East needs to ease just a bit. I would be willing to wager Maine takes it to both schools this year. afterall, they added some scoring punch to the already potent lineup and have shown more consistancy in net, compared to last year already. Did BU lose to Maine and Maine took BC into OT in HE finals last year??? Thats what I thought. Stop with the bias already!!

    • there doesn’t appear to be any rhyme or reason to these HE articles in regard to when they come out or what the subject will be. in years past, the HE blog would cover a few different areas and not just one team.

      as for whoever willing to bet that maine takes it to BC this year? maine has the potential to be a very good team, hopefully an NCAA team, and i also think they’re better than BU. but take it to BC? slow down.

      • In past years, USCHO had one Hockey East column a week, which would come out late Thursday night. The new schedule for the D-I conferences is: a Monday blog post recapping events from the weekend; a Tuesday blog post highlighting some topic from the conference; a weekly column which publishes on Thursday morning; and a Friday blog post with picks for the upcoming weekend. Those are the minimum — a conference columnist might add other posts more frequently. USCHO did this so that there would be fresh content from the writers throughout the week, rather than just on late Thursday night/Friday morning.

  7. Wow…and I thought just UNH fans noticed that everything was all about the two Boston Teams. Good for Maine – nice sweep. Lets see how they fare when they take on HE teams other than Lowell. As for BU…back…by beating UMass? Wow, kind of a stretch isn’t it? And didn’t BC LOSE to a mediocre Notre Dame team? Seems that NESN and the “unbiased” HE writers on this site are on the same sheet of music…one that the other HE teams don’t know the tune to.

    • So at 4-1, you’re ready to declare Notre Dame mediocre? There’s a lot of talent on that roster and they have a very good coach. As for BC, they went 3-1 on a tough four game road trip…I don’t see a problem with that.

  8. Wow…and I thought just UNH fans noticed that everything was all about the two Boston Teams. Good for Maine – nice sweep. Lets see how they fare when they take on HE teams other than Lowell. As for BU…back…by beating UMass? Wow, kind of a stretch isn’t it? And didn’t BC LOSE to a mediocre Notre Dame team? Seems that NESN and the “unbiased” HE writers on this site are on the same sheet of music…one that the other HE teams don’t know the tune to.

    • So at 4-1, you’re ready to declare Notre Dame mediocre? There’s a lot of talent on that roster and they have a very good coach. As for BC, they went 3-1 on a tough four game road trip…I don’t see a problem with that.

  9. How is BU back by barely beating two teams they should beat? How bout Henderickson writes the Boston blog and they get someone else to write about HE? Until BU plays the likes of UNH, Maine and BC and win they are NOT Back!

  10. How is BU back by barely beating two teams they should beat? How bout Henderickson writes the Boston blog and they get someone else to write about HE? Until BU plays the likes of UNH, Maine and BC and win they are NOT Back!

  11. With the last three national championships, I think BC and BU has earned the press. Win something other than a regular season weekend series and maybe they will write about your team.

  12. With the last three national championships, I think BC and BU has earned the press. Win something other than a regular season weekend series and maybe they will write about your team.

  13. Well, as a Miami fan I am pumped that all these teams are being over-hyped because if and when we face them (this year), the fact that we destroy them will make the RedHawks look like gods. So there!!!

    ps: So Denver beating and tying Wisconsin got them to fall a spot. What the fudge???? Really???

  14. Well, as a Miami fan I am pumped that all these teams are being over-hyped because if and when we face them (this year), the fact that we destroy them will make the RedHawks look like gods. So there!!!

    ps: So Denver beating and tying Wisconsin got them to fall a spot. What the fudge???? Really???

  15. Please look at Ed Trefzger’s explanation. This blog post isn’t the weekly column of year’s past. It isn’t even this week’s column.

    We’re breaking things up more so an individual blog post may mention only one team. This one covered BU. The quick weekend recap made note of Maine’s sweep as well as BC’s loss, which was a no-brainer since the Eagles were number one in the country. Last week, Jim discussed Maine and Northeastern. This week, Vermont.

    You’re getting as much coverage as in past years, it just isn’t located all in one column.

  16. Please look at Ed Trefzger’s explanation. This blog post isn’t the weekly column of year’s past. It isn’t even this week’s column.

    We’re breaking things up more so an individual blog post may mention only one team. This one covered BU. The quick weekend recap made note of Maine’s sweep as well as BC’s loss, which was a no-brainer since the Eagles were number one in the country. Last week, Jim discussed Maine and Northeastern. This week, Vermont.

    You’re getting as much coverage as in past years, it just isn’t located all in one column.

  17. Enough of the ECAC getting multiple bids to the tourney. They haven’t been relavant for 20 years. Another putrid showing & Duluth will beat Yale–count on it. ECAC should get one bid only, like Atlantic Hockey. I don’t care how many wins they pile up in the regular season. They are beating sub-par teams in their own conference. Get teams in that deserve it and play in a legitimate conference, like BU & Maine.

    • The only reason the ECAC gets three bids is so that players in other conferences get a chance to meet some of the players that they will one day work for.

      • LOL…is this all you can say? Wait, if I rooted for the ECAC I think I would very quickly turn this into something other than hockey…lol…lol. Do you think Matt Frattin was trying to see if any of the RPI kids would talk to him today about future employment? LOL….you are too funny…..I actually feel sorry for you…you don’t have much to work with when it comes to defending your conference….lol…you poor lilttle boy….:)

        • Geez, you guys are difficult to argue against. One says the conference has etiquette, the other says Matt Frattin is in the conference.

          • Easy there 1520. With a score like that you’re not very smart and probably went to a safety school like Dartmouth. You’re going to end up pumping gas with some of the Sioux so you might as well be nicer to them.

  18. Enough of the ECAC getting multiple bids to the tourney. They haven’t been relavant for 20 years. Another putrid showing & Duluth will beat Yale–count on it. ECAC should get one bid only, like Atlantic Hockey. I don’t care how many wins they pile up in the regular season. They are beating sub-par teams in their own conference. Get teams in that deserve it and play in a legitimate conference, like BU & Maine.

    • The only reason the ECAC gets three bids is so that players in other conferences get a chance to meet some of the players that they will one day work for.

      • LOL…is this all you can say? Wait, if I rooted for the ECAC I think I would very quickly turn this into something other than hockey…lol…lol. Do you think Matt Frattin was trying to see if any of the RPI kids would talk to him today about future employment? LOL….you are too funny…..I actually feel sorry for you…you don’t have much to work with when it comes to defending your conference….lol…you poor lilttle boy….:)

        • Geez, you guys are difficult to argue against. One says the conference has etiquette, the other says Matt Frattin is in the conference.

          • Easy there 1520. With a score like that you’re not very smart and probably went to a safety school like Dartmouth. You’re going to end up pumping gas with some of the Sioux so you might as well be nicer to them.

  19. NMU scored FOUR times against Miami — three times with a two-man advantage Saturday night

    Paula how does that work out in a 5-1 game…

  20. must be feeling generous giving BG a win against the broncos lol, I think Western will really start to pick up the intensity in the next month all leading up to a huge series in Kzoo vs. Duluth

  21. Northern Mich gaining some mojo! They’ve had a tough schedule to date and now it gets really tough with plenty of road games leading out….I like the look of this team? Any thoughts?

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