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The Big East owns a one seed; Xavier struggling to move up

Villanova is the cream of the crop, but the Big East has six teams in and one within striking distance.

Joel D

Welcome back, former A-10 fans. While I enjoyed Xavier's time in that league, you could rest assured that being under .500 in conference after 5 games was basically a death sentence for at-large hopes. No matter who the losses came to, no amount of wins over Fordham and Charlotte were going to rescue that resume. I only bring that up because Xavier currently sits at 2-3 in the Big East.

It's hard to get out of the mindset that every conference loss is a land mine to your tournament hopes, but - as we'll see below - the benefit of playing in a league loaded with talented, productive teams is that a loss every now and then or in all of your road games isn't going to send you spiraling towards the NIT.

Here's this week's s-curve...

The KenPom s-curve 1/15
1 VIRGINIA KENTUCKY GONZAGA VILLANOVA
2 Louisville North Carolina WISCONSIN UTAH
3 Arizona WEST VIRGINIA Duke Oklahoma
4 Iowa St. Notre Dame Kansas VCU
5 Ohio St. WICHITA ST. Michigan St. Baylor
6 Oklahoma St. Florida Northern Iowa Maryland
7 SMU Xavier St. John's Butler
8 SAN DIEGO ST. Texas Davidson Arkansas
9 Dayton Georgia Cincinnati Alabama
10 Iowa BYU South Carolina Seton Hall
11 Connecticut Stanford OLD DOMINION Georgetown
12 Minnesota Mississippi North Carolina St. Syracuse
12 GREEN BAY HARVARD
13 STEPHEN F. AUSTIN EASTERN KENTUCKY BUFFALO HOFSTRA
14 GEORGIA ST. NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL UC SANTA BARBARA IONA
15 COASTAL CAROLINA WOFFORD EASTERN WASHINGTON NEW MEXICO ST.
16 USC UPSTATE TEXAS SOUTHERN SOUTH DAKOTA ST. STONY BROOK
16 LAFAYETTE ST. FRANCIS NY
First 4 out Louisiana Tech Miami FL LSU Illinois
Next 4 out UCLA Providence Vanderbilt TCU

...and the bracket:

KenPom 1/15

The Big Ten and Big East each lost a team, with the ACC and SEC picking up an extra bid this week. Once again five leagues have six or more bids before a big drop off to everyone else. There are only five more multi-bid leagues, with the A10, AAC, and Pac-12 each grabbing three and the MVC and WCC being represented by a pair of team. Beneath them are 22 one-bid leagues.

Anyway, there is a lot of basketball left between now an Selection Sunday. Xavier has missed some opportunities, but the Muskies aren't in as bad a position as you might think just by watching them play on the road.