Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Post-Saturday tiebreaker update

My last post was already obsolete by the time I posted, I'm afraid. At any rate, after CSU clocked Milwaukee at the Wolstein Center and Valpo pulled out a spine-tingler against YSU, there are 9 games left and the standings are as follows:
Team               W   L   Games left
Green Bay         12   2   @OU, @UDM
Cleveland State   10   4   YSU, @VU
Valparaiso         9   5   @WSU, CSU
Wright State       8   6   VU, @UIC
Milwaukee          6   8   UIC, @UDM
Oakland            6   8   GB, @YSU
Detroit            6   8   UWM, GB
Youngstown State   6   8   @CSU, OU
UIC                0  14   @UWM, WSU
The 2 seed is now down to CSU, Valpo and WSU. In fact the 3 seed is also down to those 3 teams because everyone else already has at least 8 losses and the current 3rd place team, Valpo, will finish no worse than 9-7.

Of the 512 scenarios remaining, CSU gets the 2 seed in 62.5 % (320) of them by finishing 12-4 since no one else can OR by finishing 11-5 by either beating Valpo or beating YSU and Valpo losing to WSU. In the former case, they win the tiebreaker with Valpo if there's a tie at 11-5. In the latter case, Valpo finishes 10-6.

The 3 seed scenarios in this case split down the middle between WSU and Valpo. Valpo needs to finish at 10-6 and WSU needs to finish 9-7 or 8-8 in order for Valpo to get the 3 seed. If WSU finishes 10-6, they win the head-to-head tiebreaker with Valpo because they will sweep the Crusaders. If WSU gets the 3 seed, Valpo gets the 4 seed because Valpo leads 5th place by 3 games with 2 left to play.

If Valpo gets the 3 seed, Milwaukee, Detroit, Wright State, or Youngstown State can achieve the 4 seed. Oakland's problem is that they are the only one of the remaining 5 who has been swept by WSU who has to finish at least 8-8. Milwaukee, Detroit, YSU, and Oakland can finish no higher than 8-8, so Oakland loses out on the all the tiebreakers for 4 seed. They did sweep Detroit, who split with WSU, but they not only got swept by WSU but by Milwaukee as well. Even if Oakland somehow ends up tied only with WSU and Detroit, the best they can do is the 5 seed since WSU still wins the tiebreaker (3-1, 2-2, 1-3).

Obviously in this scenario (GB 1, CSU 2, Valpo 3), WSU has the inside track on the 4 seed. They have a 2 game lead, after all. 1 win in the last 2 games clinches it outright. The only ones they really don't want to get in a tie with are Milwaukee and -- if they pull out a win over Green Bay at Calihan Hall -- Detroit. These two teams split with WSU and, more importantly, they both will do something WSU can't do: beat Green Bay. Actually, there's one other team that can bump WSU out of the 4 seed, and that's YSU. If they finish in a 2-way tie with WSU, they get the 4 seed because the two teams split with each other, they both were swept by Green Bay, but if YSU finishes 8-8 they sweep CSU while WSU only split.

Of the 512 scenarios remaining, Valpo gets the 2 seed in 31.25 % (160) of them by beating both WSU and CSU (winning any tiebreaker with the latter because of their split with Green Bay) OR by beating CSU, losing to WSU, and WSU losing to UIC. If the 3 teams all finish 10-6, WSU would win the head-to-head-to-head tiebreaker 3-1 to 2-2 (CSU) to 1-3 (Valpo). So, if Valpo is going to get the 2 seed with a 10-6 record, WSU must finish 9-7 or 8-8 in addition to CSU finishing 10-6. With valpo getting the 2 seed, CSU gets the 3 seed since WSU falls short of 10-6, and WSU gets the 4 seed unless they finish 8-8 and either Detroit or Milwaukee also finishes 8-8. Oakland drops out of any tie because they were swept by WSU, and YSU drops out because they were swept by Valpo. Milwaukee has already beaten Green Bay, and Detroit will also do so if they finish 8-8, so whichever one finishes 8-8 (they play each other so they both can't) will bump WSU out of the 4 spot.

The remain 32 scenarios have WSU getting the 2 seed by winning a 3-way tie with Valpo and CSU (they sweep Valpo and split with CSU and Valpo splits with CSU). CSU gets the 3 seed and Valpo gets the 4 seed.

Tonight's games and their impact:

If CSU beats YSU, they eliminate WSU from the 2 seed as they increase their lead to 3 games, and they clinch the 2 seed with a Valpo loss tonight or by beating them on Saturday. If YSU wins, Valpo can grab the 2 seed by winning both games or by beating CSU and WSU losing to UIC.

If Valpo beats WSU, they clinch the 3 seed since WSU can finish no better than 9-7 and Valpo will be at 10-5. They then can grab the 2 seed simply by beating CSU on Saturday regardless of what happens at the Wolstein Center tonight. If WSU wins, as mentioned above, they must beat CSU and rely on UIC to beat WSU. If CSU beats YSU, Valpo would need UIC to beat WSU to even get the 3 seed with a win over CSU.

If UIC beats Milwaukee tonight, that will eliminate Milwaukee from the 4 seed because they would finish no better than 7-9 and 4th place has to be at least 8-8.

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