While Value Add projects three MU players will be more valuable than Todd Mayo next year, the game-by-game projections with and without him indicates if he leaves the program it could be a huge blow. The following are the Value Add projected scores for every MU game with and without Mayo, with notes after each section of the season. The first score is the projected score if Mayo is on the team and the % chance MU wins the game, followed by the same 3 numbers for if Mayo is NOT on the team. In a couple of cases the opponent might change based on if Mayo is playing - and in those cases the first team is the one MU would play if Mayo is playing:
|9-Nov||vs. Ohio St.||72||75||37%||71||76||27%|
|19-Nov||Maui-Miss St. / Illinois||77||64||93%||76||65||91%|
|21-Nov||Maui-Texas / USC||70||73||38%||70||64||77%|
|26-Nov||MD Baltimore County||86||63||99%||85||65||99%|
|TBD||at Wisconsin Green Bay||76||69||85%||75||70||75%|
|Total 10-3 Non-conference||9.94||9.76|
10-3 in non-conference, but Mayo could get UNC signature win
(Note: Edited to add Savannah State December 15 - see my comments on that excellent get of the 150th best team in the country here). Value Add projects a 2-1 record at Maui, but with a huge difference. With Mayo, the projection is for a huge signature win over UNC in the semifinal and then a loss to Texas. Without Mayo, Value Add projects a loss to UNC and then win in the 3rd place game vs. USC. The brackets aren’t actually set – these are assuming they bracket according to how good Value Add calculates each team is – but it is an example of how a guy like Mayo who can impact each game score by 3% can shift a huge 1-point win to a 1-point loss.
With or without Mayo, Value Add projects Marquette to go 9-3 in the non-conference games in November and December. There are basically 5 cupcakes. Value Add projects losses at Florida and vs. Ohio State and wins vs. Wisconsin and at Green Bay, but certainly in all four MU has a slightly better chance with Mayo then without.
|BE||at Seton Hall||74||69||75%||73||70||65%|
|BE||at South Florida||66||64||60%||65.1||65||55%|
|BE||at St. John's||74||72||60%||73||73.1||45%|
With Mayo 12-6, 5th place in Big East, without Mayo 10-8, 7th
Value Add projects a clear edge in all 9 home conference games with Mayo, while Notre Dame, Pitt and Providence look awfully tight without him. On the road, losing Mayo cost MU projected wins at Rutgers and St. John’s, as MU goes from slight favorites to slight underdogs in both games – just like the possible UNC game.
|Date||Projected Post Season Opp||MU||Opp||W%||MU||Opp||W%|
|13-Mar||BET Seton Hall / USF||76||67||88%||67||63||70%|
|14-Mar||BET Rutgers / Providence||74||69||75%||70||74||30%|
|15-Mar||BET semi - Notre Dame||66||67||45%|
|22-Mar||NCAA - La Salle / Tenn||77||72||74%||71.1||71||55%|
|24-Mar||NCAA - Duke / UCLA||72||74||43%||66||77||9%|
Tough to make BE title game; repeat Sweet 16 without Mayo
With Mayo, Marquette goes into Madison Square Garden as a 5-seed, drawing a relatively easy win over 12-seeded Seton Hall in the opener, and a pretty good shot at a win over Rutgers next. That puts MU in the semifinals where they would just be a 1-point underdog to Notre Dame, almost a 50-50 shot at going to the title game. Without Mayo, MU comes in as a 7-seed – still a slight favorite over USF in the opener but projected by Value Add to lose to one of the most improved teams in the conference – Providence – in their second game to fall short of the semifinals.
The difference not having Mayo could make in the NCAA is even more dramatic, as Value Add projects he is the difference between MU being a 5-seed and an 8-seed there. With Mayo, MU projects to draw a team like La Salle that they can handle. While Value Add projects a close 72-74 loss to Duke in the 2nd round, this year’s Duke squad is certainly one MU would have almost a 50-50 shot at beating, so a very real shot at a 3rd straight Sweet 16.
The road looks very scary without Mayo. A first round 8-9 match-up vs. Jerome Maymon and Tennessee is projected by Value Add to end in a 71-71 tie at the end of regulation. Even though Value Add projects MU as an overtime winner, it is basically a 50-50 shot at being eliminated by the Vols in the opening round. If MU does survive, Value Add projects a thrashing at the hands of UCLA, which if the Bruins are as loaded this year as they look, could actually be played in San Jose, California with UCLA as a basic host 1-seed.
Permanent or Temporary Suspension?
I certainly have no knowledge of why Todd’s suspension may or may not be permanent – nor do I want to convey that I am passing judgment on the final result.
I am in a minority that believes Davante Gardner will be MUs best player this year, and I believe losing Jamil Wilson or Vander Blue would be more devastating, and one could certainly even argue that Chris Otule’s defense presence and Junior Cadougan’s playmaking could be even more important to the team that Mayo’s huge upside. BUT, whether you believe Mayo is MUs best returning player, 7th best returning player, or where Value Add has him at 4th best, the bottom line is that it will take a committee of these seven players improving to all make up a part of what MU loses with Jae Crowder and DJO going to the NBA.
Trent Lockett could step right in and return to his Wesley Matthews-like freshman form, but the possibility of losing Mayo should not be taken lightly by any fan. It could be the difference between being ranked, in the Sweet 16, beating UNC and playing on national TV for the Big East title against Louisville. The level of competition is just that tight, and the margin of error that small.
MU could take a little step back in 2013 if Mayo does not return, before taking at least two steps forward in 2014. Value Add says MU is the 19th best team in the land with Mayo, but drops to an unranked 31st without him. The good news is that MU is so loaded in 2014 that even without Mayo they are easily a projected top 10 team.