Big East Basketball: Five-Year Ranking

    
October 21st, 2008

 

BIG EAST FIVE-YEAR STANDINGS

 

This ranking tries to answer a simple question: Who has been the best team in the Big East over the last five years?

 

A heavy emphasis is put on league play & NCAA Tournament success. NIT wins are meaningless here, as are non-conference wins.. if you feel your team is slighted by this, feel free to make your own ranking. No doubt other factors could be taken into account such as the RPI, or one could have favored postseason success more heavily. But I feel satisfied this simple system does a good job of ranking the teams recent performance.

 

100 total points is set up to be the equivalent of batting .300 in baseball.. anything above and beyond is all-world stuff. 50 points is mediocre and you only start to get bad below 40 points. South Florida, for example, at 16 points is shockingly horrendous. Unlike the previous rankings done for the ACC or Big 12, note that no team here breaks the 100 point mark. A sign perhaps of the league's parity.

 

The postseason scoring system is listed below, along with some related notes & thoughts. Check back next for the Big Ten ranking..

 

 

                     
                     
Pos. Team 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 Wins Gms. Points  
                     
1 UCONN 12 13 14 6 13 58 82 71 Win %
    Champs 2nd Round Elite 8 X 1st Round     26 Post Pts.
                  97  
                     
2 Louisville 9 14 6 12 14 55 82 67 Win %
    1st Round Final Four NIT 2nd Round Elite 8     25 Post Pts.
    *CUSA *CUSA           92  
                     
3 Pittsburgh 13 10 10 12 10 55 82 67 Win %
    Sweet 16 1st Round 2nd Round Sweet 16 2nd Round     22 Post Pts.
                  89  
                     
4 Villanova 6 11 14 9 9 49 82 60 Win %
    NIT Sweet 16 Elite 8 1st Round Sweet 16     23 Post Pts.
                  83  
                     
5 G'Town 4 8 10 13 15 50 82 61 Win %
    X NIT Sweet 16 Final Four 2nd Round     21 Post Pts.
                  82  
                     
6 WVU 7 8 11 9 11 46 82 56 Win %
    NIT Elite 8 Sweet 16 NIT Sweet 16     22 Post Pts.
                  78  
                     
7 Syracuse 11 11 7 10 9 48 82 59 Win %
    Sweet 16 1st Round 1st Round NIT NIT     12 Post Pts.
                  71  
                     
8 Notre Dame 9 9 6 11 14 49 82 60 Win %
    NIT NIT NIT 1st Round 2nd Round     9 Post Pts.
                  69  
                     
9 Marquette 8 7 10 10 11 46 82 56 Win %
    NIT NIT 1st Round 1st Round 2nd Round     10 Post Pts.
    *CUSA
*CUSA
          66  
                     
10 Cincinnati 12 12 8 2 8 42 82 51 Win %
    2nd Round 2nd Round NIT X X     9 Post Pts.
    *CUSA *CUSA           60  
                     
11 DePaul 12 10 5 9 6 42 82 51 Win %
    2nd Round NIT X NIT X     6 Post Pts.
    *CUSA *CUSA           57  
                     
12 Seton Hall 10 4 9 4 7 34 82 41 Win %
    2nd Round X 1st Round X X     5 Post Pts.
                  46  
                     
13 Providence 11 4 5 8 6 34 82 41 Win %
    1st Round X X NIT X     3 Post Pts.
                  44  
                     
14 Rutgers 7 2 7 3 3 22 82 27 Win %
    NIT X NIT X X     2 Post Pts.
                  29  
                     
15 St. John's 1 3 5 7 5 21 82 26 Win %
    X X X X X     0 Post Pts.
                  26  
                     
16 South Fla. 1 5 1 3 3 13 82 16 Win %
    X X X X X     0 Post Pts.
    *CUSA *CUSA           16  
                     

 

-Ties are broken by favoring conference winning %

 

Thoughts

- As noted, four of the league members were formally in Conference USA. It works out that the CUSA also played a 16-game schedule, so the numbers fit. However, the argument can be made that a team like Cincinnati is overrated here because the 12 league wins they had in '04 & '05 would have been equivalent to only 9 or 10 in the Big East.

- As mentioned in the intro, not one Big East team breaks the 100 point mark. Kansas, Texas, UNC, and Duke all broke that mark in their respective leagues. Those teams all won 74% or better of their league games, while UCONN tops the Big East with a 71% mark.

- UCONN's 28 postseason points, the best in the Big East, and still solely due to the 04 mark, would only be equal to the 2nd place in the ACC (Duke) & Big 12 (Texas).

- The bottom of the Big East is much worse than the other leagues. Rutgers, St. John's, and South Florida are about as bad as it gets in BCS basketball, with just 2 NIT trips between them.

- Miami, the worst team in the ACC, has made the postseason 3 times in the last 5 years. Their postseason success (2 NITs & 1 2nd Round trip) is equal to the 6th worst Big East team.

- West Virginia, despite being tied for 8th in Big East winning %, is tied for 4th in postseason success. Syracuse and Notre Dame, who have fared better in league games, barely have half the postseason success.

- Notre Dame has been particularly bad in the postseason considering their Big East record. The only comparatively poor postseason BCS team so far is Oklahoma.

- Pittsburgh has easily been the Big East's most consistent team. The only one to win 10 or more games each season, and the only one to make all 5 NCAA Tournaments.

 

Postseason Points

NIT = 1

NCAA 1st Round = 2

NCAA 2nd Round = 4

Sweet = 6

Elite 8 = 8

Final Four = 10

Final = 11*

Champs = 12*

 

* I've stopped giving 2 points per win in the final games, to prevent one year wonder teams from getting too much of a boost (ie, Georgia Tech or Ohio State in the Big Ten). Also, CBI bids receive no credit.