Everything that's worth knowing about Cornell-Maryland in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
From 10,000 Feet
Date and Time: Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 5:00 ET
Location: College Park, M.D.
Winner Advances To Play?: The winner of Bryant-Syracuse.
Television/Internet: ESPNU has the broadcast. Also available on WatchESPN.
Game "Fun Factor": 4.22 ("Good")
log5 Victory Probabilities:
|Maryland||Cornell||Maryland // 61.76%||Cornell // 38.24%|
Cornell-Maryland is a good example of when a team's gigantic possession margin value -- and the Terps are the nation's possession margin leader at almost a plus-eight margin per 60 minutes of play -- impacts victory probabilities. In a natural Pythagorean win expectation environment the Terrapins are in a toss-up game with the Red (in that environment, Maryland holds only a 50.90 chance of victory); in an adjusted environment that accounts for possession margin, the Terps are a not-insignificant favorite. Thus, the volition of Cornell-Maryland turns in important ways around how the possession war looks (and that war isn't limited to the faceoff battle between Raffa and Tesoriero).
What's Your Deal?
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 26 (Last: 2013)
NCAA Tournament Bid Type: At-Large (Ivy)
Record: 11-4 (5-1, Ivy)
Combustibles: Connor Buczek (M) (29G, 17A); Matt Donovan (A) (32G, 22A); Doug Tesoriero (FOGO) (53.0 SV%); Dan Litner (A) (46G, 5A)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 37 (Last: 2013)
NCAA Tournament Bid Type: At-Large (ACC)
Record: 11-3 (4-1, ACC)
Combustibles: Mike Chanenchuk (M) (28G, 16A); Niko Amato (G) (57.7 SV%); Charlie Raffa (FOGO) (67.8 SV%); Michael Ehrhardt (LSM) (51GB, 27CT)
Truncated Tempo-Free Profiles
|Adjusted Offensive Efficiency||37.52 (9)||35.52 (15)|
|Adjusted Defensive Efficiency||28.38 (18)||26.56 (9)|
|Possession Margin per 60 Minutes of Play||+0.80 (29)||+7.93 (1)|
|Adjusted Pythagorean Win Expectation||71.39% (10)||80.12% (5)|
|Downloadable Tempo-Free Profile (.pdf)||Cornell||Maryland|
It's strength against strength, relative weakness against relative weakness. These are two high-level teams that are among the nation's best, teams that make their money in different ways. There are differences that build into the above-table detailing probabilities, but in a completely neutral environment the game becomes a beautiful push in unit-versus-unit action.
- Cornell has played elite competition this season, but hasn't necessary faced its elite competition in the same way that it will face Maryland. The Red's four dates this season against teams expected to win at least 70 percent of their games -- home to Virginia, away to Pennsylvania, home to Syracuse, and in Boston against Pennsylvania -- were all games against opponents where, in a log5 environment, Cornell was in a toss-up situation (the Big Red are 2-2 against these opponents, losing its last two):
CORNELL AGAINST ITS BEST OPPONENTS (AS OF MAY 8, 2014) OPPONENT ADJ. PYTH. WIN EXP. LOG5 SCORE Virginia 72.07% 49.15% (Toss-Up) 12-9 (W) Pennsylvania 71.12% 50.33% (Toss-Up) 17-9 (W) Syracuse 71.11% 50.34% (Toss-Up) 9-14 (L) Pennsylvania 71.12% 50.33% (Toss-Up) 10-11 (L)
- Maryland's opportunities/tempo profile is a stylistic nightmare that helps shape how the Terps assert their strengths over opponents:
MARYLAND'S MIND-NUMBING POSSESSIONS PROFILE (AS OF MAY 8, 2014) METRIC VALUE RANK NT'L AVG. Possessions per 60 Minutes 57.50 62 64.34 Offensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 32.50 31 32.11 Defensive Opportunities per 60 Minutes 24.57 1 32.22 Opportunities per 60 Minutes Margin +7.93 1 -0.11