Virginia (20-1) (8-1) NET 1 SoS 56
Vital signs: 9-1 R/N, non-con SoS 181, 5-1 vs. Quad 1, 6-0 vs. Quad 2, avg win 135
Signature wins: @Maryland, N-Wisky, Va Tech
Bad losses: none
A couple minor marks against them – they need better signature wins, just in case, and the non-con SoS is merely just ok. This is reflected in the average win, which is a bit too high for a prospective 1 seed.
Duke (19-2) (7-1) NET 3 SoS 5
Vital signs: 8-1 R/N, non-con SoS 7, 5-1 vs. Quad 1, 5-1 vs. Quad 2, avg win 106
Signature wins: UVa, N-Kentucky, N-TTU
Bad losses: home to Syracuse isn’t the greatest loss for a prospective 1 seed
They’ve pretty much got what they need – high quality neutral site wins, great average win, great SoS.
North Carolina (17-4) (7-1) NET 10 SoS 11
Vital signs: 8-3 R/N, non-con SoS 14, 5-4 vs. Quad 1, 5-0 vs. Quad 2, avg win 118
Signature wins: Gonzaga, @Louisville, VT
Bad losses: N-Texas is the only thing approaching it
What might keep them from the 1 line is the missed chances for more signature wins – lost at Michigan, N-Kentucky, Louisville…no fault in losing them though. Every faction of the resume is in good shape otherwise.
Virginia Tech (18-3) (7-2) NET 9 SoS 106
Vital signs: 7-3 R/N, non-con SoS 283, 3-2 vs. Quad 1, 4-1 vs. Quad 2, avg win 165
Signature wins: N-Purdue, @NCSU, N-Washington
Bad losses: @Penn St I suppose
There’s one very alarming number – non-con SoS approaching 300, which sinks their average win into the 160s. As you can see, their signature wins trail the rest of the top of the league, so this puts a cap on their ceiling. They get Duke and Virginia at home still, so their seed volatility is high. If they whiff on more quality win chances, they’ll slide.
Louisville (16-6) (7-2) NET 15 SoS 8
Vital signs: 4-4 R/N, non-con SoS 3, 3-5 vs. Quad 1, 4-1 vs. Quad 2, avg win 135
Signature wins: Michigan St, @UNC, @Seton Hall?
Bad losses: @Pitt probably…@Indiana might turn ugly yet
Sterling non-con SoS gives them plenty of wiggle room. Lost to Tennessee, Kentucky, Marquette…beat Michigan St. Split with UNC. Winning 2 of your 6 toughest games is acceptable, but does put a ceiling on your seed line at 3, maybe 2. Then again, they still have Virginia twice and Duke to go. They could end up being the SoS darlings of the seed line.
Syracuse (16-6) (7-2) NET 42 SoS 35
Vital signs: 5-3 R/N, non-con SoS 73, 2-2 vs. Quad 1, 4-2 vs. Quad 2, avg win 130
Signature wins: @Duke, @Ohio St…Clemson?
Bad losses: Ga Tech and ODU at home aren’t hot
Without @Duke, this is a resume in some trouble. With it, they’re safe for now. One thing about their road record, it’s 5-1. That will play in the NCAA tournament. Two neutral site losses to Oregon and UConn are a bit killer right now. As with most NCAA teams, they have a bunch of signature win chances; they can’t afford to get skunked in all the games, but winning a couple more Quad 1 games should be enough.
Florida St (16-5) (4-4) NET 31 SoS 44
Vital signs: 6-4 R/N, non-con SoS 82, 2-3 vs. Quad 1, 4-2 vs. Quad 2, avg win 141
Signature wins: Purdue, N-LSU, Florida?
Bad losses: @BC, @Pitt probably
This is your standard “safely in” resume. A couple quality wins, no real damaging losses yet. Only two true road wins (1 of them is awful Tulane), with 4 neutral site wins mixed in there. So that’s the possible red flag for them down the road. If you look at their schedule, they have a mix of very winnable road games (Wake, Clemson, GT) and quality teams at home (NCSU, VT, UL). This is the type of schedule where the committee will expect good results. Very easy to play your way out with this type of lineup.
North Carolina St (16-6) (4-5) NET 34 SoS 260
Vital signs: 4-3 R/N, non-con SoS 352, 1-5 vs. Quad 1, 4-0 vs. Quad 2, avg win 207
Signature wins: Auburn, Clemson, @Notre Dame? Yikes
Bad losses: @Wake Forest
There are 353 D-1 teams. Non-con SoS 352. This is usually an automatic disqualifier, but in this new world, I don’t know if that’s the case this year yet. They’ve whiffed on all their quality win chances other than Auburn, and now that win is diminishing in value. One more alarming fact: their final 5 games include Wake, Ga Tech, and BC twice. Their resume make-or-break games are coming sooner rather than later.
Clemson (13-8) (3-5) NET 53 SoS 24
Vital signs: 3-6 R/N, non-con SoS 93, 0-6 vs. Quad 1, 3-2 vs. Quad 2, avg win 166
Signature wins: Lipscomb, N-Georgia, @South Carolina? Lol
Bad losses: N-Creighton and Nebraska are the worst
This is a generous listing, almost didn’t do it. But since they have no bad losses, and signature win chances are everywhere in the ACC, we’ll list them. But they need to make hay very quickly.
Off the board:
Life in the ACC is such that signature win chances are everywhere, so every team is a few wins away from relevance. I can’t make the case for Ga Tech, BC, Notre Dame, or Pitt to be on the same level as Clemson, each has a fatal flaw (like non-con SoS). All these teams also have problems with their raw number of losses.