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NCAA Hockey Bracketology (2/27 edition)


Wolverine Spy
Well, with one weekend to go in the conference regular season (ECAC is actually done) the PairWise had a big shake-up.

We see a new team in the NCAA pairings this week, as someone else has been left out for now.

As usual, the teams with the highest conference winning percentage are given the auto bids for the sake of these pairings.

Automatic Bids:
Atlantic: Quinnipiac
CCHA: Michigan
CHA: Bemidji State
ECAC: Cornell *regular season champion*
Hockey East: New Hampshire
WCHA: Colorado College/Denver U

Only Cornell has their conference championship clinched at this point. All the other ones are up for grabs, the Quinnipiac, Michigan, and Bemidji State basically just need to win 1 more game. The Hockey East still has 3 teams with a shot, and the WCHA currently has co-leaders.

Should be a fun final regular season weekend across the country.

Anyways, back to the pairings.... We've ranked the teams 1-16, but indicated of any ties in the PairWise. The RPI is used as the tiebreaker.

PWR w/o any bonus points

1. Colorado College
2. Denver U
3. Boston College
4. Cornell (t-4th)
5. Minnesota (t-4th)
6. Michigan
7. Wisconsin
8. Harvard
9. New Hampshire (t-9th)
10. Dartmouth (t-9th)
11. Boston U (t-11th)
12. Ohio State (t-11th)
13. North Dakota (t-11th)
14. UMass-Lowell
15. Maine
16. Northern Michigan

PWR w/ 3-2-1 bonus

1. Colorado College (t-1st)
2. Denver U (t-1st)
3. Boston College (t-1st)
4. Minnesota
5. Cornell
6. Michigan
7. Wisconsin
8. Harvard
9. Boston U (t-9th)
10. New Hampshire (t-9th)
11. North Dakota (t-9th)
12. Dartmouth (t-9th)
13. UMass-Lowell
14. Maine
15. Bemidji State (PWR #30, auto bid)
16. Quinnipiac (PWR UNR, auto bid)

We do have 2 match-up issues as BC is currently paired with Maine and Cornell with Dartmouth. If we swap North Dakota with Dartmouth, we don't have any match-up issues and keep the pairings pretty much in tact.

We are limited in swapping Maine. We cannot switch them with UMass-Lowell, because we'd have the same issue, and we need to keep the #1 team matched up with the lowest ranked 4 seed out there. As a result, we need to move Maine & Bemidji State, so the pairings still remain fairly in tact.

The other swap we could have done was Michigan & Cornell. However, it doesn't really help us too much attendance wise to do so, and since the worst seeds are usually swapped first, we must stick with what we have done.

As a result, we get the following pairings (and what could be a very tough Midwest regional):

East Regional, Worcester, Mass. (Host: Boston U)
1. Colorado College (T-#1, 25-6-3) *auto*
2. Harvard (#8, 18-8-3)
3. Boston U (T-#9, 20-11-3)
4. Quinnipiac (UNR, 17-12-3) *auto*

West Regional, Minneapolis, Minn. (Host: Minnesota)
1. Minnesota (#4, 22-12-1)
2. Cornell (#5, 22-4-3) *auto*
3. North Dakota (T-#9, 17-13-3)
4. UMass-Lowell (T-#13, 19-9-4)

Northeast Regional, Amherst, Mass. (Host: UMass)
1. Boston College (T-#1, 20-6-6)
2. Michigan (#6, 24-7-3) *auto*
3. Dartmouth (T-#9, 17-10-2)
4. Bemidji State (#30, 19-12-1) *auto*

Midwest Regional, Grand Rapids, Mich. (Host: WMU)
1. Denver U (T-#1, 23-8-2)
2. Wisconsin (#7, 21-10-2)
3. New Hampshire (T-#9, 22-8-4) *auto*
4. Maine (#14, 18-10-6)

Last 2 In: UMass-Lowell, Maine
First 2 Out: Ohio State, Northern Michigan

In this situation, the winners of the East-West & NE-MW regionals will face each other in the Frozen Four.

Bids By Conference:

Hockey East: 5
CHA: 1
Atlantic: 1

It looks like you guys are tied with Maine in the Pairwise rankings right now but their SOS is listed at #9 while yours is #36 which is why they'd be in. You guys are really getting punished for being in one of the weaker CCHA clusters. I'd say you have to make the CCHA tournament finals or you'll probably get left out of the NCAA tournament which would be a shame. Hopefully your coach beefs up your non-conference schedule a bit more next season so this won't be an issue.
Still a lot of hockey left with all the conference tournaments. I would still bank on us getting in. We'll show well in the CCHA tourney. No reason we can't make the finals.

the OOC schedule could stand to be beefed up a bit. Colorado College and New Hampshire are solid opponents though. In a normal year in the CCHA our SOS would be pretty good, but the CCHA was down this year.
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It really does come down to a cominbation of things...

The strength of schedule factor really comes down to a lot of things. It's a combinaton that you were put into a weaker CCHA cluster this year, your non-conference schedule was some what average, and you didn't blow away the some what average part of the schedule. I'm not trying to be a typical Michigan fan saying we're better but I'll use our schedule to compare.

Non-Conference Schedule's
Ohio State
@ New Hampshire (1-5 L)
@ St. Cloud State (1-3 L)
Sacred Heart (5-1 W)
Sacred Heart (7-1 W)
@ Clarkson College (3-3 T)
@ Clarkson College (1-3 L)
Minnesota State (5-1 W)
Colorado College (2-2 T)

Northeastern (2-4 L)
Boston University (7-2 W)
New Hampshire (4-4 T)
St. Lawrence (4-1 W)
@ Minnesota (1-5 L)
@ Wisconsin (1-3 L)
Vs. Michigan Tech (4-2 W @ GLI)
Vs. Michigan State (1-2 L @ GLI)

So as you can see you actually had a better non-conference record than us but the fact that you only played two NCAA tournament teams is really hurting you right now. What you guys should do is go out and try and get involved in the college hockey showcase with us since MSU is on the decline in hockey and pick up Minnesota and Wisconsin. That's what holding you out of the tournament right now.

Combine that with the fact that your clustered CCHA teams that you play two extra times are Ferris State (2nd to last), Western Michigan (2nd to last), and Miami (6th), and you can see why your SOS is where it's at right now.
Upvote 0