Happy Friday Nova Nation! If you read my stuff with any regularity, you know that I’m a bit of a stat head. In fact 60% of the time, I use statistics in my articles every time. Which is why Monday is such a big deal for me, and I’m here to tell you why it should be a big deal for Villanova Basketball too.
Next week, the NCAA will unveil the first iteration of the NET, and update it daily all the way through Selection Sunday. The NET (NCAA Evaluation Tool) is the most important ranking when it comes to determining seeding for the NCAA Tournament. It will also mark the return of our own series ‘Quad Goals’, where we break down Villanova’s Team Sheet and evaluate their standing for the tournament selection committee. In preparation, I figured we’d take a quick look at where Villanova stands today and what we should keep in mind when Nova’s ranking comes out on Monday.
Villanova could very well start outside the Top 25, and that’s ok
Don’t be surprised if Villanova is on the outside looking in when the NET comes out on Monday. Unlike the AP Poll or KenPom, the NET is solely based on what a team has accomplished to date. And honestly, Villanova’s resume hasn’t been all that impressive yet. Sure their schedule has been challenging, but they lost the challenging games and won everything against lesser opponents. Their best win so far is over Mississippi State on a neutral court, and that frankly just isn’t going to move the needle a whole lot.
The good news is that they still have plenty of opportunities to build their resume. Kansas is a week away, the Big East has some impressive teams that should be ranked when they play, and it never hurts to rack up neutral court wins in the Big East Tournament. And that leads me directly into my next point.
The NET ranking is pretty fluid
Unlike the AP Poll where voters are set in their ways and want to think they were right about teams, the NET is without bias. It’s purely a numbers game, which makes it easier for teams to move up if they win. For example, Villanova started December of last year ranked in the low 30’s. But by Selection Sunday, they were ranked #26 and could have been higher if not for a skid to end the regular season.
The point is even if Villanova starts out lower than anticipated in the NET, they have both the opportunity and ability to climb the ladder. Considering their still coming together as a team, and the possibility of more production from Bryan Antoine, it’s entirely possible that we see a big jump for the Wildcats between December and March. And even then, Villanova could end up being seeded higher than their ranked.
The NET isn’t the only seeding tool
While the NET is the primary source for seeding the NCAA Tournament, it’s by no means a set in stone ranking. Predictive numbers (like KenPom.com) are considered, extenuating circumstances like injury or future suspension can also come into play when we get to march. And heck, even once the true seeding is in place the teams can still be bumped up or down a line for things like geography or competitive advantage.
All of that is to say that while the NET ranking is very important, the NET ranking in December isn’t nearly as important for Villanova’s Tournament seeding. What it is important for is giving us an idea of where the Wildcats are starting off from, and how much ground they have to cover.
In other news, Jay Wright sits down with Saddiq Bey and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Ryan Arcidiacono and Josh Hart are named to NBC’s All-Legacy Team, and Joe Cremo is back in the G-League. Enjoy!
Villanova Men’s Basketball
Talking Villanova Basketball With Jay Wright: Saddiq Bey and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl | PodBean
Coach Wright is joined by sophomore forward Saddiq Bey and freshman forward Jeremiah Robinson-Earl as they discuss the season, their careers, and more.
College Basketball’s All-Decade Team | NBC Sports
These are the five best players in college basketball the last decade.
College Basketball All-Decade: The All-Legacy team | NBC Sports
These players left a legacy at the places they played
2020 NBA Mock Draft: Where do injuries put LaMelo Ball and RJ Hampton? | Rookie Wire
Anthony Edwards is No. 1 overall. But have injuries impacted draft stock for LaMelo Ball or RJ Hampton? Plus: a full first-round mock draft. Saddiq Bey comes in at #23.
Villanova vs Delaware
No. 20 Nova takes on Delaware | The Washington Post
No. 20 Villanova hosts Delaware in a non-conference matchup.
Delaware ready for test vs. No. 20 Villanova | Yahoo Sports
No. 20 Villanova will be looking for its fourth consecutive victory when it battles Delaware Saturday afternoon in the Never Forget Tribute Classic in Newark, N.J. Collin Gillespie added 20 points and freshman Justin Moore had 14 in the balanced effort. "I was proud of our guys," Villanova
Big East Basketball Power Rankings: Butler on top, Providence hits bottom | Busting Brackets
Big East basketball is fresh off a relatively strong week and there were some shifts in the power rankings as a result. Where does each team stand?
Long Island Nets bring back Ismael Sanogo and Joe Cremo, waive Jahmal McMurray and Angel Nunez | NetsDaily
The Long Island Nets re-acquired two players they waived a month ago, forward Ismael Sanogo and guard Joe Cremo Thursday, picking them up from the G League’s available player pool. With the...
Warriors being cautious with rookie Eric Paschall’s sore hip injury | Warriors Wire
Warriors rookie Eric Paschall didn't play in the fourth quarter or overtime Wednesday night against the New York Knicks due to a sore hip.
KC Chiefs Tanoh Kpassagnon ‘progressing very well’ in year 3 | BND
In his third season in the NFL, Kansas City Chiefs defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon has been coming into his own on defense and special teams, where he has blocked a kick in two straight weeks for KC.
College Basketball All-Decade Second Team | NBC Sports
These best players of the last ten years.
College Basketball All-Decade Third Team | NBC Sports
The best players of the last ten years.
College Basketball Power Rankings: Kansas and Duke make big moves behind No. 1 Ohio State | CBSSports.com
Two games this Saturday feature teams ranked here: Memphis vs. Tennessee and Gonzaga vs. Arizona