There's always debate about what team will be making it to the NCAA Tournament, unfortunately, we haven't had those conversations at Texas Tech all that often. We get to look forward to having conversations about who will be hired as the new head coach. That doesn't mean that we shouldn't at least look at the remaining Big 12 teams that I think will absolutely make the tournament (I'm not breaking any news here, almost every bracketologist is predicting the Big 12 will get five teams). Meanwhile, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Iowa St. are squarely out.
Strength of Schedule | #27 (105.8)
RPI | #1
KenPom | #2
Good Wins| Arizona, UCLA, USC, Michigan, Kansas St., Missouri
Bad Losses| None
Any doubt that Kansas gets a #1 seed. The only two losses are to Texas and @ Kansas St.
Strength of Schedule | #23 (106.1)
RPI | #14
KenPom | #5
Good Wins| Illinois, North Carolina, Kansas, Missouri
Bad Losses| Colorado, Nebraska
It's hard to consider losses to bubble teams like Colorado and Nebraska, but after struggling to finish strong, losing to Nebraska, Colorado and Kansas St. The Longhorns did have a nice win against Baylor, although Baylor is struggling too. Still, an excellent season for Texas and could use a strong finish in the conference tournament.
Strength of Schedule | #18 (106.8)
RPI | #16
KenPom | #26
Good Wins| Virginia Tech, Kansas, Texas
Bad Losses| Oklahoma St, Colorado (2)
The Oklahoma St. loss is really the worst blemish on an otherwise pretty good team. And K-State has had their fill of issues and problems with the team (a few suspensions through the year, but nothing serious). Otherwise, K-State has lost to some pretty good teams, including Duke, Florida, UNLV, Missouri, Kansas and TAMU. I think Wildcat fans would like to have some of those wins against a quality opponent, but it's not going to keep them out of the NCAA Tournament.
Strength of Schedule | #24 (106.1)
RPI | #34
KenPom | #25
Good Wins| Vanderbilt, Illinois
Bad Losses| Colorado, Oklahoma St., Nebraska
Much like K-State, Missouri hasn't lost to anyonen they shouldn't have lost to, other than losing the 3 games mentioned above, all on the road. And that's been the problem for the Tigers is that other than this weekend's loss to Kansas, all of their losses have happened on the road, which may mean that they're not quite ready for prime time. I think they're a shoe-in to get in the tournament, but they may not go far.
Strength of Schedule | #44 (105.0)
RPI | #31
KenPom | #47
Good Wins| Temple, Washington, Missouri, Kansas St.
Bad Losses| Baylor (2), Nebraksa
The losing to Baylor twice, especially after the way that Baylor has struggled late. I don't necessarily like that, but other than losing to Nebraska, the Aggies have only lost to Kansas, Texas (twice) and Boston College. I think the Aggies will struggle to score in the tournament, but I also think their defense will carry them. Just think the Aggies would be better if there was another scorer on the wing or at guard.
The teams on the fence . . . after the jump.
On The Fence
I'd like to preface all of these picks with the thought that if any of these teams make a deep run in the Big 12 Tournament, things could drastically change. With that being said, here's your teams on the fence.
Strength of Schedule | #34 (105.3)
RPI | #73
KenPom | #60
Good Wins| Missouri, Kansas St.(2), Nebraska, Texas
Bad Losses| Oklahoma, Iowa St.
This is my favorite bubble team, but I'm not sure why. I like Colorado's ability to score, they're a fun team to watch. They went through a rough stretch in the middle of January, losing to Nebraska, OU, Kansas and Baylor, but rebounded nicely. After a nice Big 12 Tournament run, I think they're in.
Strength of Schedule | #57 (104.4)
RPI | #80
KenPom | #67
Good Wins| Texas A&M (2), Nebraska
Bad Losses| Iowa St., Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Oklahoma St.
Other than the two wins against TAMU and the Nebraska win, there's just not much there to discuss here. A lot of people mention that Baylor is on the fence, and of course, I have them on the fence, but I just can't figure out what about Baylor's resume that makes you think they deserve to be in the tournament. Losing in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament, it doesn't look good for Baylor.
Strength of Schedule | #43 (105.0)
RPI | #63
KenPom | #84
Good Wins| Kansas St., Alabama, Missouri
Bad Losses| Alabama, Kansas St., Missouri
I thought that Oklahoma St. was going to be very good, very quickly under Travis Ford, but it hasn't happened this year. Watching OSU play, you tend to think that if the Cowboys had another scorer, they'd be much better.
Strength of Schedule | #53 (104.7)
RPI | #75
KenPom | #45
Good Wins| USC, Texas A&M, Texas, Missouri
Bad Losses| Davidson, Texas Tech, Iowa St.
Like all of these bubble teams, a good showing in the conference tournament could get them into the tournament. Nebraska plays tough defensive basketball and that could go a long way in the Big 12 tournament.