I know the season hasn't technically even started yet, but - with the announcement of the KenPom preseason rankings - I can hear you all clamoring with the same question: "What if the season ended today?" It's a valid query. Everyone wants to know if his or her team's 0-0 record is worthy of consideration for an at-large entry to the tournament or if the auto bid is the only remaining road to potential glory (or first-round exit on national TV). Well, fret no more, friends. I've taken KenPom's numbers and run them through the bracketology machine (which is just a spreadsheet that I created a macro for). Here, in all its glory, is the first run of KenPom Bracketology for the 2016 season.
First the s-curve:
|4||Notre Dame||WICHITA ST.||CINCINNATI||Indiana|
|5||Michigan||Michigan St.||Iowa St.||Vanderbilt|
|10||SAN DIEGO ST.||Texas A&M||UCLA||Florida St.|
|11||North Carolina St.||Ohio St.||Oregon St.||Florida|
|12||STEPHEN F. AUSTIN||AKRON|
|13||UAB||PRINCETON||IONA||NORTH DAKOTA ST.|
|15||LOUISIANA LAFAYETTE||NORTH FLORIDA||LEHIGH||CHATTANOOGA|
|16||MOUNT ST. MARY'S||MONTANA||NEW MEXICO ST.||COASTAL CAROLINA|
|16||NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL||TEXAS SOUTHERN|
|First 4 out||LSU||Rhode Island||Northwestern||Georgia|
|Next 4 out||VCU||Marquette||USC||Clemson|
And the bracket itself:
-KenPom loves the ACC, giving them 10 bids. These things tend to smooth out over time; the Big 10 was getting ten bids when we started doing this last year and was down to a handful on Selection Sunday.
-The Big East has four teams in the top of the bracket, then a big gap to Marquette on the bubble. This kind of runs in line with most people's opinion on the league right now, but it would be nice to see a couple more teams step up as the season rolls.
-Of the 25 one-bid leagues, only the A10 places anyone on the bubble.
-NJIT really threw a wrench in things as an independent last year; now they're only 30 spots from grabbing that Atlantic Sun auto bid.
-Man am I ready for March. I love grabbing a couple pounds of hot wings and posting up in front of the TV for the first Thursday of the tournament. The season needs to start already.