WAB 3/7: Vanderbilt and the importance of SOS

Last night Michael DeCourcy and Seth Davis had a spirited discussion and Vanderbilt and the importance of a strong strength of schedule. Seth Davis offered this:

Mike took issue with Seth’s use of SOS as a key selling point:

Seth took Mike’s claim both literally and seriously:

Mike brought the focus back on treating SOS as a virtue in and of itself.

Seth disagreed.

Mike noted that SOS is independent of team quality. Seth raised the point that teams face wildly different schedules.

As far as I can tell that is where their discussion ended, so let me pick it up from there. Mike is absolutely right strength of schedule has no value in and of itself. Nebraska has faced a bear of a schedule, and it led to them only winning 40% of their games. If two teams had the same record, then SOS is the clear tiebreaker, but what about when they have different records?

New Mexico State went 25-5. There are only fifteen division one teams that have five or fewer losses. Not bad. However, to answer Seth’s question, no. New Mexico State does not merit an at-large selection to the Dance. How many wins should a bubble team have against their schedule? Let’s ask six different ratings systems:

KenPom: 26.43 wins

Sagarin: 26.45 wins

BPI: 26.99 wins

Massey: 26.19 wins

Matchup Zone: 26.51 wins

Dolphin: 26.51 wins

If you average those six together, you get 26.51 expected wins. Had New Mexico State gone 27-3, they’d be a bit ahead of the curve, but a loss in the WAC conference tournament would still be problematic. Effectively, they’d need to be 28-2 at this point to be a worthy at-large selection if they were to fail to run the table in Paradise, Nevada.

What about 20-11  Michigan? Here is what those six ratings systems set as par for the course:

KenPom: 19.03 wins

Sagarin: 18.54 wins

BPI: 18.92 wins

Massey: 18.74 wins

Matchup Zone: 18.82 wins

Dolphin: 18.46 wins

If you average those together you get 18.75 wins.At 20-11 Michigan is going to finish the season with a worthy resume regardless of what happens at the Verizon Center.

What about the team that started this discussion? 17-14 Vanderbilt has faced a brutal schedule. Here are the expected wins by ratings system:

KenPom: 18.04 wins

Sagarin: 17.92 wins

BPI: 18.33 wins

Massey: 17.66 wins

Matchup Zone: 18.13 wins

Dolphin: 17.86 wins

That averages out to 17.99 wins. I can understand why people look at that schedule and excuse the 14 losses, but the math says that’s one too many. Admittedly, picking up a few wins in Nashville would change these numbers dramatically.

While we are on the subject, a bubble team would expect to win 25.49 games against Illinois State’s schedule. At 27-6, their resume is far more impressive than the RPI-based team sheet will make it appear.

The full WAB’s are available here:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1hof8DT8OCt_9A-f93NnXnSfMdp97B1qvmQ8Hw_X3X8Y/edit#gid=0

WAB Rank School WAB Bubble Percentile Pythag
1 Kansas 11.18 100.00% 0.9519
2 Villanova 9.53 100.00% 0.965
3 Baylor 8.10 99.97% 0.9418
4 North Carolina 7.79 99.95% 0.9593
5 Kentucky 7.24 99.92% 0.9509
6 Louisville 7.02 99.85% 0.9538
7 Gonzaga 6.84 99.99% 0.9688
8 UCLA 6.35 99.91% 0.9359
9 Florida 6.28 99.54% 0.9554
10 Arizona 5.98 99.74% 0.9192
11 Oregon 5.76 99.58% 0.938
12 Butler 5.71 99.15% 0.914
13 Florida St. 5.66 99.35% 0.9278
14 West Virginia 5.63 99.39% 0.9588
15 Duke 5.60 99.36% 0.9397
16 Purdue 5.59 99.24% 0.9398
17 Virginia 4.83 97.97% 0.9565
18 Notre Dame 4.79 98.24% 0.9076
19 Cincinnati 4.79 98.92% 0.928
20 SMU 4.62 98.41% 0.937
21 Iowa St. 4.26 96.63% 0.9163
22 Wisconsin 4.17 96.15% 0.9175
23 Maryland 3.96 95.40% 0.8519
24 Saint Mary’s 3.91 98.07% 0.9355
25 Wichita St. 3.65 95.65% 0.9472
26 Oklahoma St. 3.52 93.33% 0.9168
27 Minnesota 3.34 92.15% 0.8678
28 Creighton 3.23 91.68% 0.8955
29 Virginia Tech 2.92 90.71% 0.832
30 Arkansas 2.80 89.31% 0.848
31 Miami FL 2.46 86.57% 0.8832
32 South Carolina 2.04 80.09% 0.873
33 Seton Hall 2.02 80.88% 0.8199
34 Dayton 1.89 80.06% 0.8591
35 Illinois St. 1.51 75.36% 0.8197
36 Northwestern 1.46 73.03% 0.8478
37 USC 1.43 74.28% 0.7958
38 Middle Tennessee 1.38 74.78% 0.8145
39 Wake Forest 1.35 71.76% 0.8733
40 VCU 1.29 70.71% 0.8336
41 Xavier 1.25 69.55% 0.8451
42 Michigan 1.25 69.76% 0.9062
43 UNC Wilmington 1.22 70.50% 0.7789
44 Kansas St. 1.08 67.98% 0.8616
45 Providence 0.92 65.10% 0.8219
46 Marquette 0.87 64.34% 0.8788
47 Vermont 0.47 58.47% 0.7918
48 Michigan St. 0.47 57.78% 0.8368
49 Nevada 0.41 56.15% 0.8045
50 Monmouth 0.24 53.31% 0.7172
51 Georgia -0.53 41.08% 0.8013
52 UT Arlington -0.62 36.71% 0.7506
53 Rhode Island -0.63 38.04% 0.8288
54 Houston -0.68 36.85% 0.8424
55 Texas Tech -0.70 37.68% 0.8543
56 Clemson -0.73 37.94% 0.853
57 TCU -0.77 36.74% 0.8349
58 Syracuse -0.78 36.69% 0.8463
59 Princeton -0.88 31.24% 0.7832
60 Belmont -0.99 28.03% 0.692
61 Vanderbilt -0.99 34.16% 0.8461
62 East Tennessee St. -1.05 29.84% 0.7549
63 California -1.20 28.91% 0.8123
64 Mississippi -1.24 29.47% 0.7415
65 Illinois -1.26 29.80% 0.7907
66 Indiana -1.32 28.10% 0.8469
67 Iowa -1.33 28.08% 0.785
68 Akron -1.44 21.96% 0.6581
69 New Mexico St. -1.53 18.29% 0.6564
70 Georgia Tech -1.57 24.51% 0.7197
71 Winthrop -1.60 16.85% 0.6258
72 Florida Gulf Coast -1.69 16.69% 0.6413
73 Utah -1.73 20.19% 0.8333
74 UCF -1.89 18.53% 0.7438
75 Auburn -1.96 20.36% 0.7282
76 Pittsburgh -2.07 19.06% 0.7597
77 Valparaiso -2.12 13.50% 0.6539
78 Tennessee -2.23 16.91% 0.7858
79 College of Charleston -2.35 13.66% 0.6759
80 Ohio St. -2.38 15.27% 0.786
81 Bucknell -2.56 9.19% 0.7073
82 BYU -2.63 10.64% 0.7507
83 Alabama -2.78 11.57% 0.7955
84 Texas A&M -2.83 10.16% 0.7954
85 UNC Greensboro -2.89 8.27% 0.5752
86 Boise St. -3.04 7.87% 0.6923
87 Colorado St. -3.28 6.38% 0.6781
88 Memphis -3.29 6.62% 0.6961
89 Cal St. Bakersfield -3.37 2.81% 0.6185
90 Richmond -3.44 6.50% 0.7008
91 UNC Asheville -3.54 3.10% 0.6338
92 Colorado -3.69 5.08% 0.7515
93 North Carolina St. -3.72 4.94% 0.6822
94 Oakland -3.74 2.59% 0.6235
95 Grand Canyon -3.77 1.76% 0.4881
96 Georgetown -3.92 4.98% 0.7872
97 Fresno St. -4.22 2.31% 0.6666
98 St. Bonaventure -4.23 2.39% 0.6982
99 Oklahoma -4.28 3.14% 0.7991
100 Louisiana Tech -4.28 1.10% 0.6923
101 Harvard -4.33 1.20% 0.6379
102 Stanford -4.36 2.56% 0.6686
103 Texas Southern -4.50 0.53% 0.413
104 San Francisco -4.60 1.25% 0.6372
105 George Washington -4.61 2.38% 0.6107
106 Yale -4.64 0.78% 0.542
107 Penn St. -4.81 2.38% 0.7281
108 George Mason -4.86 1.52% 0.6234
109 Nebraska -4.91 2.10% 0.667
110 Arkansas St. -5.01 0.90% 0.5751
111 Old Dominion -5.08 0.72% 0.5942
112 Northern Kentucky -5.09 0.56% 0.5236
113 Temple -5.14 0.96% 0.6499
114 Furman -5.19 0.71% 0.6275
115 New Mexico -5.31 0.90% 0.5947
116 Eastern Washington -5.36 0.26% 0.4568
117 Georgia St. -5.39 0.44% 0.588
118 North Carolina Central -5.46 0.05% 0.4387
119 Ohio -5.50 0.37% 0.6606
120 Mississippi St. -5.51 0.85% 0.6866
121 Davidson -5.52 0.72% 0.7142
122 St. John’s -5.53 0.92% 0.6933
123 Rice -5.57 0.23% 0.5381
124 South Dakota -5.72 0.32% 0.5325
125 Connecticut -5.81 0.51% 0.6948
126 Louisiana Lafayette -5.84 0.25% 0.5692
127 North Dakota -5.89 0.06% 0.4716
128 Chattanooga -5.92 0.23% 0.5695
129 Rutgers -5.96 0.43% 0.5881
130 Iona -5.97 0.33% 0.5955
131 North Dakota St. -6.03 0.19% 0.4928
132 Texas A&M Corpus Chris -6.11 0.02% 0.3786
133 Lehigh -6.12 0.17% 0.6023
134 Texas -6.22 0.43% 0.7553
135 San Diego St. -6.29 0.20% 0.7129
136 Ball St. -6.34 0.12% 0.5046
137 Arizona St. -6.37 0.27% 0.5749
138 La Salle -6.46 0.20% 0.5653
139 New Hampshire -6.51 0.05% 0.4682
140 Nebraska Omaha -6.51 0.14% 0.4941
141 Tulsa -6.52 0.19% 0.5501
142 Albany -6.54 0.05% 0.572
143 Towson -6.64 0.18% 0.6092
144 Tennessee Martin -6.89 0.04% 0.3901
145 Fort Wayne -6.89 0.03% 0.5626
146 New Orleans -6.93 0.01% 0.4161
147 Wyoming -6.98 0.09% 0.5539
148 UC Irvine -7.02 0.03% 0.5783
149 William & Mary -7.05 0.05% 0.5639
150 Washington St. -7.11 0.08% 0.4533
151 Wright St. -7.14 0.05% 0.502
152 Houston Baptist -7.20 0.01% 0.367
153 Santa Clara -7.21 0.04% 0.6095
154 Northern Iowa -7.26 0.07% 0.4796
155 Loyola Marymount -7.33 0.02% 0.4965
156 Georgia Southern -7.40 0.04% 0.5108
157 Tennessee St. -7.41 0.01% 0.4816
158 Loyola Chicago -7.60 0.03% 0.6653
159 Buffalo -7.63 0.02% 0.5921
160 Southern Illinois -7.63 0.03% 0.5188
161 UMBC -7.64 0.01% 0.4309
162 Saint Peter’s -7.68 0.02% 0.6177
163 Marshall -7.88 0.01% 0.489
164 Green Bay -7.91 0.01% 0.4606
165 Kent St. -7.94 0.02% 0.5252
166 Sam Houston St. -7.96 0.00% 0.3231
167 Elon -8.00 0.02% 0.5439
168 Texas St. -8.05 0.00% 0.4386
169 Lipscomb -8.16 0.00% 0.517
170 Mount St. Mary’s -8.19 0.00% 0.3713
171 Liberty -8.22 0.00% 0.3866
172 UC Davis -8.30 0.00% 0.3641
173 Penn -8.30 0.00% 0.5085
174 Weber St. -8.31 0.00% 0.4684
175 LSU -8.35 0.03% 0.5127
176 Gardner Webb -8.39 0.00% 0.4865
177 Jacksonville St. -8.43 0.01% 0.4994
178 Stony Brook -8.43 0.00% 0.3937
179 Western Michigan -8.47 0.01% 0.5235
180 Samford -8.63 0.00% 0.4971
181 San Jose St. -8.74 0.00% 0.4113
182 Missouri St. -8.77 0.01% 0.5819
183 Idaho -8.78 0.00% 0.3618
184 East Carolina -8.79 0.00% 0.4273
185 UAB -8.89 0.00% 0.4657
186 LIU Brooklyn -8.93 0.00% 0.2993
187 Troy -8.94 0.00% 0.5049
188 Stephen F. Austin -8.98 0.00% 0.3123
189 Boston University -9.12 0.00% 0.4313
190 UMKC -9.15 0.00% 0.3516
191 Toledo -9.16 0.00% 0.5738
192 Evansville -9.16 0.00% 0.5228
193 Northeastern -9.20 0.00% 0.4996
194 Alcorn St. -9.23 0.00% 0.2101
195 Utah St. -9.24 0.00% 0.5403
196 Fairfield -9.31 0.00% 0.3879
197 Canisius -9.43 0.00% 0.4569
198 Denver -9.46 0.00% 0.4409
199 Boston College -9.53 0.00% 0.5422
200 Eastern Michigan -9.61 0.00% 0.5552
201 Massachusetts -9.70 0.00% 0.5423
202 Coastal Carolina -9.95 0.00% 0.4104
203 Utah Valley -9.99 0.00% 0.4236
204 Charlotte -10.07 0.00% 0.3214
205 Wofford -10.12 0.00% 0.5411
206 Montana -10.12 0.00% 0.4535
207 South Dakota St. -10.16 0.00% 0.4844
208 Long Beach St. -10.18 0.00% 0.3497
209 San Diego -10.23 0.00% 0.2914
210 Siena -10.24 0.00% 0.5083
211 Mercer -10.27 0.00% 0.5446
212 Rider -10.27 0.00% 0.3877
213 Lamar -10.33 0.00% 0.3392
214 Cal St. Fullerton -10.39 0.00% 0.2729
215 Western Kentucky -10.40 0.00% 0.356
216 Norfolk St. -10.43 0.00% 0.19
217 Saint Joseph’s -10.46 0.00% 0.4969
218 Washington -10.52 0.00% 0.4994
219 DePaul -10.53 0.00% 0.4989
220 Morehead St. -10.53 0.00% 0.4206
221 USC Upstate -10.58 0.00% 0.3387
222 Central Michigan -10.77 0.00% 0.3668
223 Wagner -10.91 0.00% 0.3195
224 Loyola MD -10.94 0.00% 0.2914
225 Fordham -10.96 0.00% 0.4437
226 Hofstra -11.14 0.00% 0.4654
227 Holy Cross -11.18 0.00% 0.358
228 Hawaii -11.19 0.00% 0.3227
229 Columbia -11.19 0.00% 0.3518
230 St. Francis PA -11.21 0.00% 0.2957
231 Montana St. -11.27 0.00% 0.3413
232 Savannah St. -11.28 0.00% 0.1594
233 Little Rock -11.33 0.00% 0.3387
234 IUPUI -11.38 0.00% 0.4342
235 UTEP -11.42 0.00% 0.41
236 Southeastern Louisiana -11.42 0.00% 0.3262
237 Navy -11.44 0.00% 0.3944
238 Bradley -11.52 0.00% 0.385
239 High Point -11.53 0.00% 0.2712
240 Seattle -11.69 0.00% 0.2601
241 Eastern Illinois -11.71 0.00% 0.3569
242 Portland St. -11.76 0.00% 0.3324
243 Hampton -11.80 0.00% 0.1764
244 Radford -11.84 0.00% 0.2105
245 Brown -11.86 0.00% 0.2682
246 Jacksonville -11.87 0.00% 0.2656
247 Saint Louis -12.05 0.00% 0.2751
248 Northern Illinois -12.12 0.00% 0.4087
249 Indiana St. -12.15 0.00% 0.4438
250 South Alabama -12.20 0.00% 0.3356
251 Morgan St. -12.22 0.00% 0.1417
252 North Florida -12.27 0.00% 0.318
253 Nicholls St. -12.27 0.00% 0.1595
254 Murray St. -12.33 0.00% 0.4201
255 UNLV -12.40 0.00% 0.3089
256 Northwestern St. -12.42 0.00% 0.2059
257 South Carolina St. -12.49 0.00% 0.0991
258 Missouri -12.66 0.00% 0.5073
259 Grambling St. -12.78 0.00% 0.1191
260 Campbell -12.85 0.00% 0.2473
261 Pacific -12.87 0.00% 0.3535
262 Abilene Christian -12.91 0.00% 0.1851
263 Northern Colorado -12.92 0.00% 0.2421
264 Bowling Green -13.07 0.00% 0.3238
265 Kennesaw St. -13.15 0.00% 0.2974
266 Prairie View A&M -13.16 0.00% 0.1718
267 Southeast Missouri St. -13.21 0.00% 0.325
268 Sacramento St. -13.26 0.00% 0.2359
269 Portland -13.35 0.00% 0.2747
270 UTSA -13.41 0.00% 0.2711
271 Eastern Kentucky -13.43 0.00% 0.2647
272 Incarnate Word -13.46 0.00% 0.1814
273 Maryland Eastern Shore -13.51 0.00% 0.16
274 Cal St. Northridge -13.58 0.00% 0.2752
275 Robert Morris -13.60 0.00% 0.2638
276 Illinois Chicago -13.60 0.00% 0.3209
277 Southern -13.63 0.00% 0.1575
278 Jackson St. -13.65 0.00% 0.1416
279 Duquesne -13.78 0.00% 0.3837
280 Delaware -13.81 0.00% 0.2254
281 Austin Peay -13.87 0.00% 0.2339
282 Charleston Southern -13.88 0.00% 0.2021
283 Army -13.89 0.00% 0.3153
284 Florida Atlantic -14.03 0.00% 0.2637
285 Air Force -14.04 0.00% 0.3477
286 Pepperdine -14.13 0.00% 0.2189
287 Fairleigh Dickinson -14.22 0.00% 0.2773
288 Appalachian St. -14.23 0.00% 0.279
289 Cal Poly -14.57 0.00% 0.2035
290 South Florida -14.59 0.00% 0.2244
291 NJIT -14.66 0.00% 0.2445
292 Cornell -14.81 0.00% 0.2799
293 Tennessee Tech -14.87 0.00% 0.3046
294 The Citadel -14.91 0.00% 0.2157
295 Tulane -14.94 0.00% 0.342
296 Oral Roberts -14.99 0.00% 0.3359
297 Dartmouth -15.03 0.00% 0.2062
298 Bryant -15.03 0.00% 0.2514
299 Western Illinois -15.18 0.00% 0.2175
300 Sacred Heart -15.39 0.00% 0.2071
301 Binghamton -15.44 0.00% 0.1804
302 Youngstown St. -15.62 0.00% 0.243
303 Western Carolina -15.67 0.00% 0.1368
304 Quinnipiac -15.68 0.00% 0.2193
305 UMass Lowell -15.73 0.00% 0.2349
306 Miami OH -15.76 0.00% 0.254
307 Cleveland St. -15.77 0.00% 0.3039
308 Manhattan -15.88 0.00% 0.2381
309 UC Riverside -15.93 0.00% 0.1878
310 Southern Miss -15.98 0.00% 0.1522
311 Oregon St. -16.02 0.00% 0.28
312 Lafayette -16.27 0.00% 0.1369
313 UT Rio Grande Valley -16.37 0.00% 0.1822
314 Stetson -16.52 0.00% 0.1638
315 Colgate -16.56 0.00% 0.2722
316 Delaware St. -16.60 0.00% 0.1041
317 American -16.69 0.00% 0.1973
318 UC Santa Barbara -16.70 0.00% 0.138
319 James Madison -17.03 0.00% 0.3691
320 Central Arkansas -17.03 0.00% 0.1694
321 Drake -17.10 0.00% 0.2821
322 Milwaukee -17.11 0.00% 0.2892
323 Detroit -17.21 0.00% 0.2202
324 Drexel -17.39 0.00% 0.3103
325 Howard -17.39 0.00% 0.0941
326 McNeese St. -17.41 0.00% 0.1437
327 Louisiana Monroe -17.42 0.00% 0.2765
328 Mississippi Valley St. -17.56 0.00% 0.0757
329 VMI -17.59 0.00% 0.1439
330 North Texas -17.61 0.00% 0.1745
331 Niagara -18.04 0.00% 0.2807
332 Marist -18.10 0.00% 0.1891
333 Bethune Cookman -18.22 0.00% 0.0893
334 Hartford -18.36 0.00% 0.1157
335 Chicago St. -18.54 0.00% 0.0904
336 Alabama St. -18.59 0.00% 0.0791
337 Northern Arizona -18.59 0.00% 0.155
338 Maine -18.89 0.00% 0.1031
339 Coppin St. -19.05 0.00% 0.0675
340 FIU -19.13 0.00% 0.2645
341 SIU Edwardsville -19.30 0.00% 0.1655
342 Longwood -19.50 0.00% 0.0643
343 Florida A&M -19.52 0.00% 0.066
344 Idaho St. -19.56 0.00% 0.1286
345 Central Connecticut -19.80 0.00% 0.091
346 Presbyterian -20.65 0.00% 0.0417
347 Arkansas Pine Bluff -21.31 0.00% 0.0511
348 Southern Utah -22.38 0.00% 0.1222
349 St. Francis NY -22.78 0.00% 0.0632
350 Alabama A&M -24.10 0.00% 0.0337
351 North Carolina A&T -25.49 0.00% 0.0486
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: