NCAA Lacrosse Tournmanet Bracket Projection Aggregation

Winslow Townson

Where do people have your favorite or least favorite team relative the NCAA Tournament field?

Bracket projections are all over the place, you guys. With only two weeks of play left before the NCAA Tournament starts, this is becoming all too real. The bubble this season, not unlike prior years, is kind of a mess with somewhere around a dozen teams jockeying for only eight spots. That's exciting in a very everything-is-on-fire kind of way, and it's emboldened by the fact that nothing is set in stone at this point in the year as all kinds of important games will be played over the next 12 days that will, hopefully, focus the picture.

Brave souls have undertaken the task of trying to guess what the NCAA Tournament field looks like at the moment. I've aggregated their projections in the table below (if you click on their names it'll take you to their specific pieces). There is a general consensus on a bunch of teams, but there are some blips that are kind of interesting.

BRACKET PROJECTION AGGREGATION: APRIL 23, 2013
FOY STEVENS COUGHLIN "burnspbesq"
CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS
America East Albany Albany Albany Albany
Big East Notre Dame Notre Dame Notre Dame Notre Dame
THUNDERDOME! Penn State Penn State Penn State Penn State
ECAC Denver Denver Loyola Denver
Ivy Cornell Cornell Cornell Cornell
MAAC Marist Marist Marist Marist
NEC Bryant Bryant Bryant Bryant
Patriot Lehigh Lehigh Lehigh Lehigh
AT-LARGE SELECTIONS
Bucknell In In In In
Denver AQ AQ In AQ
Drexel In Out Out Out
Duke In In In In
Loyola Out In AQ In
Maryland In In In In
North Carolina In In In In
Ohio State Out Out Out In
Pennsylvania In In In Out
Princeton Out Out Out In
Syracuse In In In In
Yale In In In Out

It's pretty clear that, at the moment, Albany, Notre Dame, Penn State, Denver, Loyola, Cornell, Marist, Bryant, Lehigh, Bucknell, Duke, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Syracuse, and Yale are in the driver's seat -- or are expected to be in the driver's seat -- for a trip to May. That doesn't mean that these teams are locks; rather, it's just that fancy bracket people (on an aggregated basis) have these 16 teams as the likely constituents of May's bracket. That's kind of a high degree of bracket constitution identicalness, which is a little odd given the chatter about the difficulty of determining the bubble this year.

So that's where bracket projectors are shaking out. What about the guy -- me -- that doesn't particularly like the primary selection criteria that the NCAA mandates the Selection Committee utilize? This is how things shake out when you look at resumes based on efficiency values.

CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS

IMAGINARY CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS
LEAGUE TEAM ADJ. EFF. MARGIN RANK. PYTH. WIN EXP. RANK SIG. WINS SIG. LOSSES OPP. EFF. MARGIN RANK OPP. PYTH. WIN EXP. RANK
Ivy Cornell 15.29 (1) 82.60% (1) Yale (17); Pennsylvania (10) N/A 0.00 (34) 53.05% (28)
ECAC Denver 12.62 (3) 74.27% (6) Duke (11); Lehigh (7); Pennsylvania (10); Ohio State (20); Loyola (5) N/A 2.80 (8) 59.10% (7)
Big East Notre Dame 10.28 (6) 76.54% (4) Duke (11); Penn State (16); North Carolina (2); Denver (3); Ohio State (20) N/A 2.35 (11) 56.68% (11)
Patriot Lehigh 9.43 (7) 72.87% (8) Penn State (16); Army (15); Bucknell (12) N/A 0.28 (32) 50.89% (32)
America East Albany 7.26 (13) 65.76% (18) Syracuse (9); Johns Hopkins (14) N/A -1.11 (44) 49.72% (34)
THUNDERDOME! Penn State 6.83 (16) 69.03% (11) Denver (3); Bucknell (12) N/A 1.24 (24) 54.28% (20)
NEC Robert Morris 4.05 (23) 59.89% (24) N/A Dartmouth (40); Bryant (41); Sacred Heart (52) -3.15 (56) 41.82% (55)
MAAC Marist 1.72 (29) 54.50% (29) N/A Delaware (42) -4.77 (60) 38.89% (59)

These are ordered based on where the "conference champion" currently sits in the adjusted efficiency margin rankings (e.g., Cornell is currently ranked higher than Denver, so the Ivy League comes before the ECAC). (Please note: Robert Morris is weird. It's really hard to explain, but here's the short of the long: Bryant is probably the best team in the NEC. Let's leave it at that and move on.)

AT-LARGE POOL

To keep this relatively manageable, I'm including all teams ranked in the top 20 in adjusted efficiency margin that aren't indicated above as an imaginary conference champion. The at-large pool probably isn't this deep, but the depth of the table does provide a little context to the overall picture and illustrates what teams could be in the at-large conversation after the regular season and various conference tournaments are completed.

TRUNCATED AT-LARGE POOL
LEAGUE TEAM ADJ. EFF. MARGIN RANK. PYTH. WIN EXP. RANK SIG. WINS SIG. LOSSES OPP. EFF. MARGIN RANK OPP. PYTH. WIN EXP. RANK
ACC North Carolina 12.99 (2) 78.32% (2) Princeton (8); Maryland (4); Johns Hopkins (14); Hofstra (19) N/A 2.87 (7) 59.30% (6)
ACC Maryland 11.80 (4) 77.80% (3) Loyola (5); Duke (11); Yale (17) N/A 2.62 (9) 58.23% (8)
ECAC Loyola 11.54 (5) 76.51% (5) Ohio State (20) N/A 1.08 (25) 54.45% (18)
Ivy Princeton 8.96 (8) 69.68% (10) Hofstra (19); Johns Hopkins (14); Yale (17) Dartmouth (40) 1.83 (15) 57.71% (10)
Big East Syracuse 8.38 (9) 69.89% (9) Army (15); St. John's (18); Johns Hopkins (14); Princeton (8); Cornell (1) N/A 1.44 (22) 54.77% (15)
Ivy Pennsylvania 8.29 (10) 73.11% (7) Duke (11); Lehigh (7); Princeton (8) N/A 4.35 (1) 60.62% (2)
ACC Duke 8.05 (11) 67.19% (15) Loyola (5); North Carolina (2) N/A 2.12 (12) 55.62% (13)
Patriot Bucknell 7.34 (12) 68.83% (12) Cornell (1); Albany (13); Army (18) Mount St. Mary's (49) 1.92 (14) 54.52% (17)
Independent Johns Hopkins 7.06 (14) 68.51% (14) Maryland (4) N/A 1.56 (19) 54.14% (22)
Patriot Army 6.89 (15) 68.56% (13) N/A N/A -2.70 (54) 43.04% (54)
Ivy Yale 6.34 (17) 67.08% (16) Albany (13); Pennsylvania (10) N/A 3.95 (4) 59.66% (4)
Big East St. John's 5.63 (18) 61.63% (20) Yale (17); Hofstra (19); Notre Dame (6) Georgetown (45) 0.70 (26) 53.98% (23)
THUNDERDOME! Hofstra 5.56 (19) 65.96% (17) Notre Dame (6) N/A 1.32 (23) 54.41% (19)
ECAC Ohio State 4.38 (20) 61.56% (21) Penn State (16) N/A 1.55 (20) 53.71% (26)

Based on this information, I'd probably take these three schools -- in no particular order -- as at-large invitees without blinking an eye: North Carolina, Maryland, and Syracuse. The other five that I'd take as at-large selections would probably be: Loyola, Pennsylvania, Bucknell, Yale, and Duke. It ends up being the same pool of candidates that the bracket projection folks came up with, but for different reasons. Life is weird.

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