Sunday, February 28, 2016

Patriot League conference tournament preview

This is part 5 of a 32-part series that will take a look at every conference and conference tournament in the country.  We'll recap who's playing and what the stakes are for each team in the conference.

The final standings:
Bucknell 14-4 (17-12)
Lehigh 13-5 (15-14)
Boston 11-7 (18-13)
Army 9-9 (18-12)
Colgate 9-9 (13-16)
American 9-9 (11-18)
Navy 9-9 (18-13)
Loyola(MD) 8-10 (9-20)
Holy Cross 5-13 (10-19)
Lafayette 3-15 (6-23)

Tournament format:
These will be campus site games for the entire tournament.  Higher seed hosts.  Tuesday March 1, Thursday March 3, Sunday March 6, Wednesday March 9.

The matchups:
8/9) Loyola(MD)/Holy Cross at 1) Bucknell
5) Colgate at 4) Army
7/10) Navy/Lafayette at 2) Lehigh
6) American at 3) Boston

The stakes:
The conference RPI isn't actually too bad at 24th, but all the individual RPIs aren't in great shape.  Bucknell 168, Lehigh 165, Boston 185, etc etc.  This is 16 seed territory, usually.  If they get upsets elsewhere they can maybe get to the 15 line, but I wouldn't get my hopes up for any of them.  There's just nothing in any of these resumes.  Marginal W/L records, no quality wins, marginal at best schedules.

If anything, the top 3 seem to be safe bets for the CIT (or NIT autobid in Bucknell's case).  It might be more interesting what happens to the service academies, Army and Navy, who are above .500 on truly weak overall schedules.  They're hardly locks, and just based on merit, probably aren't postseason teams.

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