Sunday, February 8, 2009

the basketblogpoll

Just like with football, there is now a Blogpoll for bastaball. In case you're wondering, no, I don't know why it's starting now and not earlier. That's a question for Powers That Be, and I only vote, I don't make the rules. In any case here's my ballot for this week. If you remember the football one, the rules are the same; if you're new to the game, it's played like so: I post my preliminary ballot on Sunday some time, and you the reader are encouraged to straighten me out.

2North Carolina
7Wake Forest
10Michigan St.
15Utah St.
20Louisiana St.
24Arizona St.

I offer along with this ballot an apology - it's in no way scientific or even particularly thorough in its thought process. It's written under the influence of a time crunch as well as extreme soreness and a pretty fair amount of fatigue - six hours ago, I was wrapping up my second straight seven-hour day on the ski slopes. Don't be jealous just 'cause I had an awesome weekend. It's at least a defendable ballot, though.

In the future, my rankings will very certainly be crunched by the numbers. How exactly, I don't know, but they'll involve the following:

- Some combination of the Pomeroy and RPI rankings. Pomeroy intends his rankings to be entirely predictive; RPI, like the Blogpoll rankings, is supposed to be based on resume.
- Some way of tabulating the value of the out-of-conference wins and losses on each team's schedule based on the above combination.
- Some involvement of strength of schedule.
- Some way of ranking the conferences. One major distinction I plan on making between the football and basketball rankings is this: I don't intend to take into account individual wins and losses within the conference. In football, the national championship demands perfection or near-perfection; in basketball, the quest for perfection is just a silly game the media plays. If Florida is going for the national football title, losing to a crappy team like Arkansas is a major crippling blow to their chances, and it's reflected in the rankings. If Florida's basketball team is a national title contender and loses to a crappy team like Arkansas, it hardly matters. Everyone has losses like that on their resume anyway. I'll take into account a team's record in conference play and which conference they play in, rather than who exactly they beat or lost to. So conference rankings matter - UNC's 7-2 is certainly more impressive than Miami (Ohio)'s 7-2. Out of conference, individual games - and their locations - do matter.

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