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Analysis: Indiana Hoosiers Basketball Vs. The Rest Of The Bubble

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Two days after its loss to Ohio State and one day before selection Sunday, Indiana is projected by only 23 of 111 bracket experts to earn at large bid. In other words, 20.7 percent still have the Hoosiers making the NCAA Tournament.

To give a better idea of how they fare against other bubble teams and whether it's still feasible for IU to get in, TheHoosier.com has a breakdown of other bubble teams' resumes and how IU stacks up.

For this piece, we will be using ESPN analyst John Gasaway's Bubble Watch as a point of reference. It will be narrowed further based on The Bracket Matrix's consensus Last Four In, or consensus 11 seeds, as well as its First Four Out.

Including IU, Gasaway has 19 teams competing for seven available spots: NC State, Clemson, TCU, Texas, St. John's, Ceighton, Georgetown, Xavier, Ohio State, Arizona State, Florida, Alabama, Temple, Memphis, Belmont, UNC Greensboro, Furman, and Lipscomb.

Of those teams, The Bracket Matrix has NC State, TCU, Arizona State, Ohio State, Temple and St. John's as contenders for the Last Four In, with Belmont, Clemson, Alabama and IU as its First Four Out. Those 10 listed will be broken down below.

How Each Quadrant Is Defined

Quadrant 1: Home games vs. NET teams ranked in the top 30; neutral games vs. 1-50; away games vs. 1-75.

Quadrant 2: Home vs. 31-75 teams; neutral vs. 51-100; away vs. 76-135.

Quadrant 3: Home vs. 76-160 teams; neutral vs. 101-200; away vs. 136-240.

Quadrant 4: Home vs. 161-plus teams; neutral vs. 201-plus; away vs. 241-plus.


Indiana's Resume

NET: 53

KenPom: 43

NET Strength of Schedule: 59

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 14

Quadrant 1 record: 6-9

Quadrant 2 record: 2-6

Quadrant 3 record: 3-0

Quadrant 4 record: 6-0

The word: Indiana swept Big Ten co-regular season champion Michigan State and also posted quality non-conference wins over Marquette and Louisville. While it doesn't have any bad losses, sitting only two games over .500 and having 15 total isn't going to do them any favors. Historically, the selection committee hasn't handed out an at-large bid to a program which fits that bill since Georgia (16-14) in 2001, according to Inside The Hall's Andy Bottoms. Combine that with a loss to Ohio State - another bubble team - in their Big Ten Tournament opener, and the Hoosiers currently have zero control over their fate and will need some help getting in.

NC State 

Overall record: 22-11

NET: 34

KenPom: 32

NET Strength of Schedule: 178

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 59

Quadrant 1 record: 3-9

Quadrant 2 record: 5-0

Quadrant 3 record: 4-2

Quadrant 4 record: 10-0

The word: The Wolfpack are obviously well over .500, but their schedule has been boosted in part by having a pretty weak schedule. Their non-conference slate was the least-strongest of all 353 teams, according to both the NCAA NET rankings and KenPom. However, one thing that helped NC State's case was defeating Clemson - NET ranking 35 - in its ACC Tournament opener. A 20-point loss to top-seeded Virginia in the quarterfinals Thursday did little to negatively affect it, either, since it's a Quadrant 1 loss. Although 64 percent of NC State's wins came against lower-tier teams, it doesn't have any bad losses or an early conference tournament exit.

TCU

Overall record: 20-13

NET: 51

KenPom: 48

NET Strength of Schedule: 39

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 35

Quadrant 1 record: 3-9

Quadrant 2 record: 6-4

Quadrant 3 record: 7-0

Quadrant 4 record: 4-0

The word: Besides boasting one of the strongest schedules of any bubble team, TCU also doesn't have many bad losses. In fact, 11 of their 13 were to opponents in the NET Top 50. Like the Hoosiers, two of Horned Frogs' Quadrant 1 wins came against the same team in Iowa State, which finished fifth in the Big 12 but will face third-seeded Kansas tonight in the conference tournament title game.

Arizona State

Overall record: 22-10

NET: 63

KenPom: 61

NET Strength of Schedule: 70

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 67

Quadrant 1 record: 3-3

Quadrant 2 record: 8-3

Quadrant 3 record: 5-2

Quadrant 4 record: 6-2

The word: ASU owns a trio of impressive Quadrant I victories in No. 20 Mississippi State and No. 30 Utah St. at neutral sites and a home-win over Big 12 third-place finisher Kansas, but its highest true road win out of six is against No. 87 Oregon State. However, five of the Sun Devils' 13 losses were to teams outside the NET top 100, including home losses at Stanford (107), Utah (104), and Vanderbilt (154) and home losses to No. 188 Princeton and No. 206 Washington State.

Ohio State

Overall record: 19-14

NET: 55

KenPom: 44

NET Strength of Schedule: 47

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 16

Quadrant 1 record: 4-10

Quadrant 2 record: 5-3

Quadrant 3 record: 5-1

Quadrant 4 record: 5-0

The word: Another team whose resume is boosted by having few bad losses, specifically No. 88 Northwestern and No. 100 Rutgers on the road and No. 109 Illinois at home. The Buckeyes' four quadrant one wins look strong in quality but not necessarily quantity, the highest being No. 25 Cincinnati, then No. 48 Nebraska, No. 52 Creighton and No. 53 IU. At the same time, that's more quality wins than Indiana had both in Quadrant 1 and overall, and Ohio State beat IU in Thursday's Big Ten Tournament opener for both schools, a matchup widely viewed as a play-in game for both.

Temple

Overall record: 23-9

NET: 54

KenPom: 76

NET Strength of Schedule: 75

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 73

Quadrant 1 record: 2-6

Quadrant 2 record: 6-2

Quadrant 3 record: 7-1

Quadrant 4 record: 8-0

The word: Familiar refrain here with few bad losses for the Owls, the worst being No. 108 Penn at home. Five quality true road wins and a neutral site win over No. 65 Davidson also strengthens their resume, though the highest-ranked road win was No. 77 Missouri. However, while they a good overall record, their case is weakened by a soft schedule and having just two Quadrant 1 wins.

St. John's

Overall record: 21-12

NET: 72

KenPom: 79

NET Strength of Schedule: 73

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 62

Quadrant 1 record: 5-7

Quadrant 2 record: 5-3

Quadrant 3 record: 3-2

Quadrant 4 record: 8-0

The word: A win over DePaul in its Big East Tournament opener did little to help St. John's chances as it only added a Quadrant 3 win. However, the Red Storm have the second most Quadrant I wins of any bubble team thanks to a regular season sweep of No. 28 Marquette, a home win over No. 26 Villanova, a road win at No. 52 Creighton and a neutral site win over VCU. St. John's also doesn't have many bad losses - all were inside the NET Top 100 with the exception of getting swept by No. 102 DePaul in the regular season.

Belmont

Overall record: 26-5

NET: 47

KenPom: 53

NET Strength of Schedule: 73

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 229

Quadrant 1 record: 2-6

Quadrant 2 record: 6-2

Quadrant 3 record: 7-1

Quadrant 4 record: 8-0

The word: The Bruins own the best overall record of any bubble contestant, but their two Quadrant 1 wins are tied with Temple for second-fewest among the 10 contenders. There's also a massive discrepancy between the NET and KenPom's assessments of their schedule strength. It also doesn't help Belmont's case that that 26 of 31, or 84 percent, of their opponents this season were ranked 120 or lower in KenPom.

Clemson

Overall record: 19-13

NET: 35

KenPom: 30

NET Strength of Schedule: 37

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 33

Quadrant 1 record: 1-10

Quadrant 2 record: 6-3

Quadrant 3 record: 6-0

Quadrant 4 record: 6-0

The word: The biggest knock against the Tigers is just one Quadrant 1 win, a home victory over No. 11 Virginia Tech. While they don't have any bad losses, their highest-quality road win is No. 81 South Carolina, followed by No. 112 Notre Dame. They also fell to fellow bubble contestant NC State in their ACC Tournament opener on Wednesday. Really, the only thing working in Clemson's favor is that the ACC was a deep league this year in terms of the number of highly-ranked teams they played.

Alabama

Overall record: 18-15

NET: 61

KenPom: 60

NET Strength of Schedule: 14

KenPom Strength of Schedule: 23

Quadrant 1 record: 3-10

Quadrant 2 record: 7-3

Quadrant 3 record: 5-2

Quadrant 4 record: 3-0

The word: The Crimson Tide are 0-7 on the road, and their highest true road win is No. 77 Missouri. Outside of home wins over No. 5 Kentucky and No. 22 Mississippi State and a neutral site win over No. 36 Mississippi, there's not much here to make a strong case for Alabama to be in the field of 68.

Summary

Indiana has the most Quadrant 1 wins of any team, and it will have to hope the committee will value those quality victories and the lack of bad losses, as well as take into account what it was capable of when healthy. However, it will also be tough to the committee closely scrutinizing going 1-12 during a rough stretch between January and February, along with the lack of quality road wins.

It's also fair to wonder whether the discrepancy between NET strength of schedule and KenPom strength of schedule will be weighed, and how 20 Big Ten games will factor into the thought process.

Two of the seven spots could be taken by Bowling Green and Oregon winning their respective conference tournaments with Buffalo and Washington already locks, further shrinking IU's chances.

It's going to be a close call, but history is against them when it comes to their NCAA Tournament chances.

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