Hooo boy, what are we getting into with this much-awaited post?
The short of it is that the Pac-West is the conference to beat, winning 60% of their games against the CCAA and 64% of their games against the GNAC. The really short of it is that we only won a combined 28% against them.
The good is that WOU, SPU, and WWU did okay in non-conference.
The bad is, no one else did.
The ugly is that it’s simply a down year for basketball on the west coast. We could look at out of region non-conference, but it’s so minute in the full respect of things that there’s not really a point of doing that. Only one team out of 36 schools is going to play an out-of-region team again this year… who that’s going to be? No one knows.
In the charts below, the schools are listed by the standings at the end of non-conference play.
Click the image and it’ll blow up into actual readable size.
During non-conference, it seemed like CWU and SFU were doing okay… how they did against relevant competition says otherwise. Western Oregon is leading our conference and yet… they lack a signature division two win.
Western Oregon beat Dixie State & Monterey Bay.
Seattle Pacific beat Hawaii Pacific.
Western Washington beat San Bernardino State & Hawaii-Hilo.
Central Washington beat Academy of Art.
Simon Fraser beat Holy Names.
… Yikes. Yikes, yikes, yikes. Yes, 28% winning percentage is bad enough, but… that’s a 72% losing percentage. There’s nothing that you can really say to that.
In terms of the CCAA: we have a win against middle-of-the-pack Monterey Bay and bottom-of-the-pack San Bernardino.
The Pac-West? We played those teams until the salmon swam home and we have a winning record against only -two- of them, those being Hawaii-Hilo (10th) and Notre Dame de Namur (11th).
In terms of our teams likeliness of making the tournament, first and foremost: the auto bid will get it. Second of all, Alaska-Fairbanks is ineligible, so it’s one against eight for this year. Third of all, these are speculations if by some grace of Naismith we get an at large birth:
- Western Oregon: Non-conference resume passes the sniff test in terms of other GNAC teams and so they do hold that advantage, however without a high winning percentage (.775+) in conference, it seems unlikely.
- Seattle Pacific: Non-conference resume beats everybody but WOU and they have a convincing win against Dixie State to boot, but… they also would need a high winning percentage (.750 or so), luckily they have the experience to get that; question is, will they?
- Central Washington: It could happen, but seems unlikely; they’d need an .800 record in conference, easily. They’re inexperienced but there are so many dynamite guys. Their best bet is gonna be clicking at the right time and getting the autobid, which could definitely happen.
- Western Washington: Like SPU, they’ll be given the benefit of the doubt, so even a .700 winning percentage could do it, depending on how convincing those wins are. WWU theoretically has the talent and dedication, can they make it happen?
- Simon Fraser: Feel good story of the year says that their best bet is the autobid.
- Saint Martin’s: They’ll be shoved into the conference tournament by the grace of UAF’s academic woes, but the odds of them getting a bid are like the odds of
- Alaska-Anchorage: How the mighty have fallen. Not ruled out entirely, but extremely remote without the auto.
- NNU: No.
- MSUB: No.
Thereabouts is the look of the GNAC; we’ll go more in-depth with each team beginning tomorrow.
Up next is the Pac-West and CCAA in west region context.