2013 March Madness: Louisville Undeserving of Top Spot

By Taylor Sturm
Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

The Louisville Cardinals won a share of the Big East regular season title and the Big East tournament; however, the Cardinals don’t deserve the No. 1 overall seed that they received for the NCAA tournament.

How are the Gonzaga Bulldogs not the No. 1 overall seed? Louisville may have played a better schedule due to the Big East being tougher than the West Coast Conference, but the Cardinals still lost to Villanova — a team unranked all season that barely made the tournament. The Bulldogs won 31 games this season and the losses came against the No. 13-ranked Illinois Fighting Illini and the No. 13-ranked Butler Bulldogs. Gonzaga had no bad losses and was still moved behind the Cardinals by the selection committee.

If Duke hadn’t lost to Maryland in the ACC tournament, the Blue Devils would have finished with a better record than Louisville, but probably wouldn’t have been the No. 1 overall seed. For that matter, the Florida Gators deserved the No. 1 overall seed because their conference is tougher than the Big East (9 top 100 RPI teams are greater than 8 top 100 RPI teams). This is another case of the NCAA selection committee showing favoritism towards the Big 6 conferences and teams with prestigious pedigrees and past tournament performances.

It’s understandable that the Cardinals got a No. 1 seed; their performance against the top teams in the country solidified that. However, Gonzaga should have received the No. 1 overall seed based on the Bulldogs’ 31 – 2 record. It’s unfortunate that the selection committee overlooked the opportunity to make things equal in the NCAA instead of showing favoritism to the Big East.

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