Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Show Must Go On

True story*: I talked to my uncle's best friend's cousin's neighbor's dog groomer's brother-in-law's uncle, Ozzy Osbourne about RPI's recent playoff loss to Colgate and the possibility that they would make the NCAA tournament anyway. He wrote this song about them.

* - Note: Not a true story.

My friends, the moment has arrived. We will be playing in the NCAA tournament. Hooah.

Here is the official WaP projection of the bracket, which will be announced tomorrow.

#1 seeds: Yale, North Dakota, Boston College, Miami
#2 seeds: Michigan, Merrimack, Denver, Union
#3 seeds: Minnesota-Duluth, Western Michigan, Notre Dame, Nebraska-Omaha
#4 seeds: New Hampshire, Colorado College, RPI, Air Force

East Regional (Bridgeport Arena at Harbor Yard, Bridgeport, CT)
E4. Air Force vs. E1. Yale
E3. Minnesota-Duluth vs. E2. Union

Midwest Regional (Resch Center, Green Bay, WI)
MW4. RPI vs. MW1 North Dakota
MW3. Western Michigan vs. MW2 Denver

West Regional (Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO)
W4. Colorado College vs. W1. Boston College
W3. Nebraska-Omaha vs. W2. Michigan

Northeast Regional (Verizon Wireless Center, Manchester, NH)
NE4. New Hampshire vs. NE1. Miami
NE3. Notre Dame vs. NE2. Merrimack

These are the teams in the field, there's no denying that. There are a few things the committee could do.

1) I've taken my base prediction (which is actually exactly the same as that of CHN) and swapped the Michigan/UNO matchup, which would take place in Manchester in a more perfectly integral bracket, and moved it to St. Louis in place of Merrimack/Notre Dame, thereby turning a situation with three teams playing outside of their regions to only one.

2) The committee could choose to send North Dakota to St. Louis, a logistically easier location, as a reward for finishing as the #2 overall seed. That would basically swap the entire St. Louis and Green Bay brackets.

Therefore, we project that the Engineers will play in Green Bay on Saturday against North Dakota. The only other possibility that exists besides Green Bay is St. Louis.

Yes, there is zero chance of RPI playing in the East. This is because of the host requirements in Manchester and Bridgeport. In Manchester, hosts UNH must be placed there, and since UNH and RPI are both #4 seeds, RPI cannot go there. In Bridgeport, hosts Yale must be placed there, and since Yale is a #1 seed and would play a #4 seed, RPI cannot go there because there cannot be intra-conference matchups in the first round.

Therefore, the only options are Green Bay and St. Louis. The Engineers would end up in St. Louis if the committee decides to place the Sioux in St. Louis instead of Green Bay. That's not outside the realm of possibility, so keep that in the back of your mind. But given all the information that we have received, we expect RPI to play UND in Green Bay.

The selection show is Sunday morning at 11:30 am. You had better be watching.

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