Sunday, March 6, 2016

Big Sky conference tournament preview

This is part 18 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 standings:
Weber St 15-3 (23-8)
Montana 14-4 (19-10)
Idaho 12-6 (20-11)
Idaho St 11-7 (16-14)
North Dakota 10-8 (15-14)
Eastern Washington 10-8 (16-14)
Montana St 9-9 (14-16)
Portland St 8-10 (12-17)
Northern Colorado 7-11 (10-20)
Sacramento St 6-12 (13-16)
Northern Arizona 3-15 (5-24)
Southern Utah 3-15 (5-23)

Tournament format:
All 12 are headed to Reno.  Women and men playing together, so the schedule is a bit elongated.  Tuesday March 8 to Saturday March 12.

The matchups:
1) Weber St vs. 8/9) Portland St/Northern Colorado
4) Idaho St vs. 5/12) North Dakota/Southern Utah
2) Montana vs. 7/10) Montana St/Sacramento St
3) Idaho vs. 6/11) Eastern Washington/Northern Arizona

The stakes:
Big Sky is merely 27th in conference RPI.  Almost everything about every single team here screams the 16 line.  Weber and Montana can probably avoid Dayton; no one else can.  There's just nothing here.  I could list out mundane stats, but just trust me.  Now, if enough upsets happen, maybe they escape to the 15 line, but I'm not optimistic.

And even behind Weber St and Montana, no one else particularly deserves a postseason bid on merit.  Idaho's probably a bubble team who'll make it, and I suppose if those tournaments need a western team, they'll come calling.

Boy, this conference sucks writing about.  There's just a whole lotta nothing going on here.

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