February 26, 2009

Basketball Tournament Seeds To be Determined

Courtesy of the Peach Belt Conference

AUGUSTA, GA - With one game to go in the PBC regular season, its time to examine the myriad of tiebreaking possibilities that exist in both men’s and women’s basketball. The brackets for the PBC Tournament will be released on Saturday night following the final games, and every game has something riding on it.

The Peach Belt seeds teams using the following criteria:
1) Overall Conference Record
2) Head-to-head record
3) Record vs. #1 team. If still tied, record vs. #2 team and so on.
4) Coin toss. If two teams are tied, have split their head-to-head games and have the same result against every other team in the PBC, we go to the coin flip.

Women’s Basketball

Francis Marion locked up the #1 seed last Saturday and Clayton State is the #2 seed. Where things begin to get interesting is with Lander, Armstrong Atlantic State and USC Aiken. GCSU had a game nullified this year and, as a result, will have only 19 regular-season games and cannot be tied with anyone at season’s end.

Lander/Armstrong Atlantic State. These two teams play on Saturday in Savannah. If AASU wins, they will be tied at 12-8 and will have split their regular-season meetings. AASU wins the tiebreak thanks to their thrilling overtime win at FMU on Wednesday.

USCA/Armstrong Atlantic State. These two teams can only be tied by themselves if they both lose on Saturday. Should that happen, Lander would be at the #3 seed and AASU will have lost both of their games against the Bearcats.  USCA would get the #5 seed (GCSU would get #4 with a win over USCA and Lander win over AASU) due to splitting their regular-season games with LU and AASU would be #6.

If AASU beats Lander and USCA beats GCSU, we’ll have a three-way tie at 12-8 with AASU/Lander/USCA. To break this tie, the PBC will pit all three against one another head-to-head, in effect making a little mini-conference. So, against USCA and LU, AASU has (or will have if they beat Lander on Saturday) a 2-2 record against both combined. USCA would be 3-1 (swept Lander) while Lander is 1-3. Therefore, a three-way tie would put Aiken as the #3 seed, AASU #4 and Lander #5.

The only other possible tiebreak comes at the 7-8 spot between Columbus State and UNC Pembroke. The two teams face each other on Saturday and only a UNCP win will force a tie. If that should happen, UNCP will win the tiebreak because they will have, at that point, swept CSU in their two games.

North Georgia is the #9 seed and Augusta State is the #10 for the tournament.

Men’s Basketball

We start at the top where Augusta State and USC Aiken have been sprinting neck-and-neck towards the finish line for five straight games. Both teams are 16-3 and split their regular-season meetings.

Should both win on Saturday, they would share the PBC regular-season championship but Augusta State would be the #1 seed. Both teams would have the same records against AASU (2-0), GCSU (1-1) and FMU (2-0). But against North Georgia, USCA is 1-1 while ASU is 2-0, including a double-overtime win in Dahlonega.

Should both teams lose on Saturday, ASU would still get the #1 seed. A USCA loss to GCSU would mean USCA is 0-2 against the Bobcats while ASU is 1-1.

Armstrong Atlantic State/GCSU – If these two teams are tied, under any circumstances, AASU would get the tiebreak thanks to their season sweep of the Bobcats.

FMU/North Georgia – A Francis Marion loss to Clayton State on Saturday would put them into a tie with North Georgia, whose regular season ended on Wednesday. The two teams split their regular-season games, but North Georgia would get the tiebreak and the #5 seed thanks to their win over USCA on Feb. 7. FMU would be the #6 seed.

The 7-10 spots are all up for grabs with Lander, Clayton State, Columbus State and Georgia Southwestern tossed into the blender. None of the teams play each other, so there are many, many scenarios that could play out, too many to detail here. But we will take a look at the existing three-way tie between Clayton, Columbus and Southwestern.

Looking at the head-to-head mini-conference, Clayton State is 0-4 against both GSW and CSU and would therefore fall to the #10 seed. Once a team is separated in the three-way tie, the two remaining teams go back to step 1. GSW and CSU split their regular-season games and going down the PBC standings it will all depend on who is higher: FMU or North Georgia. If FMU finishes ahead of North Georgia, then Georgia Southwestern would win a head-to-head tiebreak with Columbus State (FMU swept CSU, GSW split). If North Georgia finishes ahead of FMU, then Columbus State would be ahead (NGCSU swept GSW, CSU split).