The long and short of it is that the new NET rankings are out for the first time this season, and Xavier isn’t exactly at the top. The Musketeers certainly sit at 8-2 (1-2 in the Big East) and are coming off their first two losses of the season. Xavier is 54th in the KenPom, 45th in Bart Torvik, and a nine seed according to Bracket Matrix.
That is the mix of good and bad news surrounding Xavier prior to these rankings. The bad news from the NET is that Xavier is 46th. That puts them down around Purdue and Virginia, who are having equally uneven seasons, but far behind the Big East’s top team, Villanova, who comes in at fifth.
What this means for the NCAA tournament is still somewhat up in the air. In the last season in which there was a tournament teams ranked 47th, 56th, 63rd, and 73rd made it into the tournament. Seems good, right? NC State at 33rd and Clemson at 35th didn’t make it. The NET has allegedly been changed, but there was no tournament or bracket release last year to know exactly what would have happened with the new rankings.
Right now Xavier is without a Q1 win and sits at 2-1 in Q2. They have no bad losses to worry about, but no really high line wins either. There will be opportunities aplenty to grab those wins but, unusually for the Big East, there are some bad losses (Butler and DePaul) potentially still lurking. Xavier has work to do, the release of the NET just further demonstrates that.