NCAA Selection Committee: Punishing the SEC for Being Too Strong?
The SEC was not flashy this year. There wasn’t an unstoppable Kentucky team like last year, there were upsets every few games, and there were only three teams to make the NCAA tournament. However, the SEC was one of the most talented conferences in the country. Is the NCAA Selection Committee showing bias in so many SEC teams’ exclusions from the big dance?
The SEC had nine teams with a top 100 RPI; that’s more top 100 RPI teams than both the Big East and the Big 10 who have eight and seven teams in the NCAA tournament. The only SEC teams that made it to the NCAA tournament are the Florida Gators, the Missouri Tigers, and the Ole Miss Rebels.
Look at the Rebels 12th seed. Ole Miss won the entire SEC tournament and had to beat Missouri and Florida back-to-back in two days to do so. Despite beating two extremely talented teams, they were still given an extremely high seed and probably would not have made the tournament without winning the SEC tournament. The Rebels are going to crush Wisconsin in the first round behind Marshall Henderson, Reginald Buckner, and Murphy Holloway.
The NCAA tournament should have also included Kentucky, the Tennessee Volunteers, and even the Alabama Crimson Tide. Instead, the NIT should have included Texas A&M, Arkansas, and LSU. There should be at least five SEC teams in the NCAA tournament and there should be at least four teams in the NIT tournament.
In other words, the Selection Committee needs to start taking into account the difficulty of the league. When the Elite Eight has two SEC teams in it and the NIT Final Four has three SEC teams in it, a lot of people are going to wonder why the most competitive conference in the country only had three teams in the NCAA tournament.