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NCAA Round Up: Stuff your schedule with cupcakes.

I touched on this subject a bit last week on my blog but it does stimulate an interesting debate. I referenced an article by the Wisconsin Badgers hockey beat writer Andy Baggot; apparently in the future the Wisconsin Badgers are going to load up on unimpressive opponents in hopes of making the NCAA tourney. One might call these said team cupcakes.

Personally, I think the NCAA screwed up when they decreased the power rating equation from 50 percent to 21, now there will be no need for scheduling quality opponents and teams might just decide to load up on bottom feeders in the CCHA, AHA and ECAC to pad their stats and rack up wins and stats. The down side of that equation is that if your teams loses to these unimpressive cupcakes they will hurt your teams strength of schedule and the out of conference record.

Question: does a team compromise their principles or good name by racking up wins against poor competition? Or anything to make the NCAA tourney, you can’t win if your team is not in?

NCAA tourney formula drives changes

Eaves said recent adjustments in how strength of schedule factors into an NCAA tournament resume is driving the changes. In the past three years, the value of an opponent’s winning percentage has decreased significantly in the power rating equation (from 50 percent to 21) and a school with a record under .500 can no longer qualify for an at-large berth regardless of its schedule strength or where it stands in the Pairwise Rankings.
Alabama-Huntsville, projected to be an NCAA Division I independent in 2010-11, and Massachusetts, a consistent second-division club in Hockey East, will play series here next season.

Mike Cerniglia, the UW director of hockey operations, said another non-conference home series will likely be added for 2010-11 because the Icebreaker is exempt from the normal 34-game regular season and UW prefers to have 20 home dates per season.