As March Madness quickly approaches, we’ll be taking a look at Iowa’s resume each week. We’ll explore their accomplishments to-date, but also look at how they’re projected to finish and what that might mean for their tournament seeding.
As always, if there are things you like or don’t, something you’d like to see added, etc. let us know in the comments.
The Iowa Hawkeyes ended the regular season with a whimper. They lost their final two, including a senior night blowout at home to Purdue, and three of their final four. A team that once was in position to share the Big Ten title is now the 5 seed in this week’s Big Ten Tournament.
That sets the Hawkeyes up for a more difficult path to a Big Ten Tournament title, but depending on the outcome of Wednesday’s matchup between Northwestern and Minnesota, May give Iowa a chance to add to their NCAA Tournament resume.
With just the conference tournament games to go, here’s your weekly breakdown of Iowa’s NCAA Tournament chances.
Current Record: 20-11, 11-9 - 5th in Big Ten
AP Rank: 25 (18 last week)
Coaches Rank: 25 (18)
KenPom: 23 (21)
Sagarin: 30 (19)
NET: 34 (29)
W - Ohio State (16, Q1)
L - @ Michigan State (7, Q1)
W - Penn State (26, Q1)
L - Purdue (33, Q2)
L - @ Illinois (39, Q1)
Quadrant One Record: 7-8
Wins: Maryland, Ohio State, Texas Tech (N), Michigan, Wisconsin, @Minnesota, @Syracuse
Losses: San Diego State (N), @Michigan State, @Maryland, @Michigan, Penn State (N), @Purdue, @Illinois, @Indiana
Quadrant Two Record: 6-1
Wins: Rutgers, Penn State, Illinois, Minnesota, Cincinnati (N), @Iowa State
Quadrant Three Record: 2-2
Wins: Oral Roberts, @Northwestern
Losses: DePaul, @Nebraska
Quadrant Four Record: 5-0
Wins: North Florida, Nebraska, Cal Poly, SIU Edwardsville, Kennessaw State
Thursday, March 12: Northwester (177, Q3) / Minnesota (45, Q1)
KenPom Projected Record: 20-11, 11-9
Projected Quad 1 Record: 7-8
Projected Quad 2 Record: 6-1
Projected Quad 3 Record: 2-2
Projected Quad 4 Record: 5-0
Projected Big Ten Finish: 5th (5th last week)
Consensus NCAA Tournament Seed Projection: 6 (5)
You can click the above links to see the sources for these projections.
Teams to Win: Iowa, Minnesota, Cincinnati, DePaul, Rutgers, Purdue
We’re coming down to the final days before Selection Sunday. With a number of conferences already in the midst of or having completed their conference tournaments, there are fewer and fewer teams to root for each day. There are still a few teams Iowa fans should be rooting for this week, however.
First and foremost, Iowa winning games is obviously the biggest driver of their potential seed. An early exit to either Minnesota or Northwestern would be a major problem for the Hawkeyes’ potential seeding.
Beyond Iowa, we’re down to desperation time in terms of finalizing the resume. Iowa has a couple of teams still in play who could just from one quadrant to another. That’s headlined by Cincinnati. The Bearcats are currently 51 in the NET rankings, putting them just one spot away from being a Q1 win for Iowa. They play on Friday against an opponent to be determined. A win would be really helpful for Iowa’s resume in terms of getting back to .500 in Q1 games.
The other non-Big Ten team with a chance to make an impact is our old friends at DePaul. It’s really unlikely, but if the Blue Demons can find a way to piece together a run, they have an outside shot to climb out of Q3. It would probably take three wins to get there, but that would be a major boost to the Hawkeyes.
And finally, in the Big Ten Tournament we have a few teams to follow. First, Iowa should be hoping to catch Minnesota in their first game on Thursday. The Golden Gophers are sitting just inside the top-50, meaning Iowa could get another crack at a Q1 win on a neutral site if they face Minnesota.
Then there’s Rutgers and Purdue, who are both within striking distance of Q1. Wins over Michigan and Ohio State respectively would likely get Iowa another Q1 win and erase a Q2 loss (moving Purdue to Q1 at home).
Teams to Lose: Ohio State, Michigan, Butler, Auburn, BYU, West Virginia, Virginia, St. Mary’s, St. Louis, Richmond
The Hawkeyes are projected as a 6 seed as of today. They’re joined on that line by West Virginia, Michigan and Penn State. On the 5 line, we see Ohio State, Butler, BYU and Auburn. So generically, Iowa fans want all those teams to lose.
There is a bit of nuance here, however. BYU, for example, already lost in the WCC Tournament to St. Mary’s. That will hurt them in the next round of brackets. Now, Iowa fans should be rooting for St. Mary’s to lose as that would take away a Q1 win from BYU given their current 30th rank in the NET. That would have the added benefit of propping up Rutgers and Purdue if they get a win, both teams Iowa is rooting for.
The other additions include St. Louis and Richmond. Those are both teams Auburn holds wins over. In addition to Auburn falling in the SEC Tournament, Iowa fans should be hoping for some losses out of SLU and Richmond in the Atlantic 10 Tournament to further diminish the Tigers’ resume.
And finally, Virginia is the top overall 7 seed per Bracket Matrix. They also sit on the 6 line in Joe Lunardi’s Bracketology. Let’s go ahead and root for an early exit from the ACC Tournament for the Cavaliers.