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Xavier on the S-curve

Some of our favorite constituents have been asking us how the A-10 tournament results could affect Xavier's seeding. To answer that question, we need to address a couple of other things. The first of those is where Xavier sits now. SBN updates their S-curve before each day's games, and they currently have Xavier sitting on the five line. ESPN's Joe Lundari posted his new S-curve today as well - albeit behind the pay wall - and also has X hanging around the five line. As nothing happens in a vacuum, Xavier's potential movement hinges on their results as well as those of the teams around them.

The second factor thing to address is who exactly is hanging around X. The experts online seem to be unanimous in their opinions about the teams directly in front of Xavier. First up is Arizona; they are still active in the Pac-10 tournament, facing off against USC and - if they win - the winner of Washington and Oregon. UConn and Louisville occupy the next two spots on the S-curve. Louisville has a game on the docket tonight against Notre Dame, while UConn faces Pitt. If both the teams win, they'll play each other. Both UConn's and Louisville's opponents are too strong for a loss to be too damaging to them at this point, but it's conceivable and X could sneak past Arizona if the Wildcats slip up against USC.

On the flip side, there's also always the chance that Xavier spits the bit in the A-10 tourney and achieves negative progress on the curve. St. John's and West Virginia are both looming behind Xavier, but both have already bowed out of the Big East tournament. Lacking the opportunity to further improve their resumes, these teams will only get past X if the Muskies bow out today against UD. Further down the charts, Temple is positioned with a chance to make a run through the A-10 and potentially face both Richmond and Xavier. Winning both of those games - coupled with the obvious Xavier loss - might not get Temple ahead of the X-men, but it would make the conversation more interesting.

One team with the potential to leap several spots in the curve is UNLV. The Runnin' Rebels have SDSU up next in the Mountain West, and a win there would give them the opportunity to play the winner of BYU v. New Mexico. If they knock off a couple of nationally ranked teams in the span of the weekend, UNLV could see themselves move up a couple of lines, potentially knocking Xavier back.

The grander point in all of this is that it is difficult for a weekend to have a dramatic affect on a resume that has taken a season to build. The goal at this point is to simply keep winning and let the chips fall where they may. The experts concur that X is currently firmly seated on the five line; as detailed above, opportunities for advancement seem to be slim. If Xavier loses early in the A-10 tourney, they could potentially fall to the six line, which is a dangerous place to be. As the committee's machinations proceed, it is possible from that position to end up bumped to a seven seed and have the prospect of a number two awaiting you in the second round. Barring anything dramatic though, expect to see Xavier with a five or a six seed come Selection Sunday.