Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Back Iron Bracketometry: Could Kentucky vs. Bucknell Happen?

In the second week of the expanded Back Iron Index, we see that the struggles of teams near the top of the human polls can certainly have some bearing on the computer ranks as well.

While we may not have much use for the SEC as a whole, only myopic jingos can deny that Florida has been playing some strong basketball. That solid ball has earned them five number-one rankings among the 10 BII metrics, good for the new No. 1 overall seed.

Don't expect Duke to go away quietly, though. The Blue Devils are still the only team ranked in the top five all the way across the BII board. Ryan Kelly is still conspicuous by his absence, but freshman Amile Jefferson is getting his legs under him in ACC play. Jefferson has potted averages of 10 points, seven rebounds and almost two blocks per game over his last four. Now, perhaps he can work on learning not to foul everyone he sees (15 fouls in those four games).

At the other end of the Bracketometry projections, Big Blue Nation now needs to go into a Big Red Panic. More explanation after the jump.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

NEW and IMPROVED Back Iron Bracketometry: January 22

Those of you who have read in the past about the Back Iron Index (both of you) have seen brackets pitting the real 68 best college basketball teams in the nation. But, it was an incomplete sample.

Where were all the teams that might be on the bubble? Was I missing someone? How many more teams would make up the NIT pool, and possibly rank ahead of the ones that I was already listing?

From here on, the arduous process of ranking the best teams in America will include nearly ALL of the teams in America. Every team in every conference with an NCAA automatic bid has been ranked in the 10 BII metrics (including our newcomer TeamRankings.com, which replaces the pointless Bilas Index).

This does leave out the two independents and the last handful of teams left in the Great West, who'll just about all join the WAC soon enough anyway. Still, anyone want to take odds that a selection committee member will throw NJIT out there for an at-large bid? ("Hey, they nearly beat Providence." "Shut up and go pay the pizza guy.")

Yeah, me neither.

Read on to see what other improvements have been made to the Index.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Back Iron Tournament: The REAL 68 Best Teams in America

It used to be called the Bilas Invitational, but the Back Iron Tournament (BIT for short) has evolved to a point where even Bilas's epic swag cannot contain it.

Suffice it to say that this is a tournament that will never happen, but certainly should. It lacks the democratic appeal of the everyone-has-a-vote NCAA tournament, preferring a more résumé-based approach.

The only way to get into the BIT is to earn it by being one of America's 68 best teams.

For those who are unfamiliar, check the explanation after the jump. For those who are familiar, the parameters have changed, so they need to check after the jump, too.