"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Marquette's Non-Con Quadrants

Marquette's win over Baylor remains their best non-conference victory
 Photo by Jeff Hanisch | USA Today

Marquette is on a 5-game winning streak that has seen them climb into protected seed territory for the first time of the year. With non-conference play done, it seems like a good time to check in on where Marquette's non-conference foes currently reside. We're going to break them down by NET Quadrant, with some thoughts added of where those games might end up.

Quadrant 1: #4 Purdue (A), #22 Baylor (H), #49 Mississippi State (N)

The Purdue loss looks like a lock to remain in the top quadrant. Baylor remains a good win, though they briefly fell to Q2 (home cut-off is #30). Mississippi State is the biggest danger case. The Bulldogs are right on the cut line (neutral cut-off is #50) and they have lost four of five to fall out of our field. Four of their next five are against projected tourney teams, so if they're going to turn it back around, now would be a good time.

Quadrant 2: #60 Wisconsin (H)

The Badgers are the only home Q2 game, and while they are reasonably safe to stay there, that could turn into a bad loss if they continue to lose. Bucky has lost two straight and kenpom projects them as underdogs in five of their next six games. It might be hard to cheer for Bucky, but it would be nice for them to at least stick in Q2 territory (home cut-off is #75).

Quadrant 3: #147 Georgia Tech (N), #163 Notre Dame (A)

While these teams haven't performed like we might've hoped, both are solidly in Q3. Georgia Tech (neutral cut-off is #200) began the year around that range so it isn't that much of a surprise, but Notre Dame really disappointed. On paper, that was expected to be a Q1 game (away cut-off is #75) so this falling all the way to Q3 is disappointing. The Irish would have to get into the top-135 just to get back to Q2. These two teams played earlier this week, with Notre Dame securing a 1-point win in overtime.

Quadrant 4: #166 Radford (H), #182 NC Central (H), #288 Central Michigan (H), #291 Chicago State (H), #362 Long Island (H)

All five of these were projected Quadrant 4 games, so there's not much surprise here. However, there's a real chance to move up to Q3 (home cut-off is #160) for Radford and maybe even NC Central. The rest seem locked in, and as we expected, Long Island is proving to have one of the worst rosters in the country, checking in at #362/363 with an 0-14 D1 record and all but one of those losses by double digits.

As we mentioned earlier, Marquette is into the protected seed range. Let's look at our S-Curve and projected bracket:

Last Four Byes: Penn State, UCF, Clemson, Boise State
Last Four In: Pittsburgh, Nevada, Creighton, New Mexico
NIT 1-Seeds/First Four Out: Mississippi State, Memphis, Utah, Utah State
NIT 2-Seeds/Next Four Out: UNLV, Indiana, Virginia Tech, West Virginia
Multibid Leagues
Big 10: 10
ACC: 7
Big 12: 7
Big East: 5
SEC: 5
Mountain West: 4
Pac-12: 3
American: 2
WCC: 2

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