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Current RPI: 191 (-2 from last game’s RPI of 189)

Changes: The Niners defeated the Youngstown St. Penguins of the Horizon League by 20 in dominating fashion. Clearly a different 49ers team than the group that lost at the buzzer to teams equally futile to Y’town. Lutz is minimizing substitutions now as he appears to have a feel for how each player fits into the lineup. The Penguins were a very inferior opponent and never really threatened to take control of the game.

My Thoughts: Lamont Mack returned to lackluster play after breaking it open vs. Miss St. in the previous week. However, Dijuan Harris had a career game, finally pulling up to take the shot instead of passing as he went perfect from the floor scoring 20. Those twenty points were the difference in the game. The Niners hit 100 pts. in a regular season game for the first time since they lost in 3OT vs. #22 Alabama my freshman year… four years ago. I would continue to be optimistic about the improvement of the team if An’Juan Wilderness, the 3rd leading scorer wasn’t out for the next two weeks with a stress fracture.

Ugh. Right when we were making progress after losing 2 of our top three guards at the start of the season, we lose another top guy. I’ve now got to re-adjust my outlook on the season. I think we’ll take down Long Island to go 5-6 but at Maryland on the 3rd is now the definition point of the season. Can we beat an NCAA caliber team? Without our top defensive presence? I’m not very confident.

I’m down in Lousiana where everyone is getting hyped up about UL-Lafayette’s Ragin’ Cajuns taking on #18 Tennesee so I won’t be in Halton for the Long Island game. Hopefully I can catch it on internet radio or Uttervision via NNN.net shoutbox.

Data based on Sagarin Ratings via RPIForecast.com,

Probability of NCAA Tourney at-large bid (40 or lower RPI) = .03%<

Most probable end of season record = 14-16

I’ll be posting an RPI update for the Charlotte 49ers after every game (once data is available). You can subscribe to these updates without reading menial stories from my life by subscribing to this RSS feed. I will be launching a 49ers sports only blog in the next few months to cover this kind of information so you won’t have to read all this other stuff for too long.

Dec 28th RPI

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From Andy Katz’s blog,

Charlotte is back from the dead. The 49ers opened 1-6 but have won the past two — on the road, at difficult places to play. Charlotte won at Southern Illinois and took out Mississippi State in Starkville on Wednesday. Lamont Mack was the team’s go-to guy and scored 19 points and grabbed eight boards. The 49ers were able to beat SIU with Mack going 1-for-9 for only two points.

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Current RPI: 189 (+39 from last game’s RPI of 228)

Changes: The Niners defeated the Miss St. Bulldogs of the SEC by 6 after blowing a 20+ point lead in Starkville, MS to improve to 3-6 on the season. The 49ers started a 2 game win streak (Southern Ill., Miss St.) after tying the program’s worst ever losing streak by dropping 6 straight (Old Dominion, App St., Clemson, Arizona St., Providence, Cal State Fullerton)

My Thoughts: Lamont Mack finally woke up and played his first strong game of the season dropping 19 and hitting 8-15 from 2pt. range. This road win builds momentum for two relatively easy home games before heading up to Maryland. After dropping many close games (2 by 1 pt, and 2 in OT) it was great to finally win one definitively (up by 16 at the half). I can definitely see Lutz turning this team around by giving them a more structured offense and Mack getting out of his slump has helped significantly.  This team definitely goes 5-6 over the next two games and I don’t think we lose again until we play at Temple on January 24th giving us a record of 11-7 before hitting the meat of the A10 season vs. Xavier.

I think Lutz has turned this season around over the last two games and we go 20-10. We’ll finish 3rd in the A10 with a 12-4 A10 record behind Xavier and Temple. Our four conference losses will come to Xavier, Temple, Fordham and Richmond.

Disclaimer: Optimism noted above can disappear quickly by losing to Long Island or Youngstown St. in our next two games

Data based on Sagarin Ratings via RPIForecast.com,

Probability of NCAA Tourney at-large bid (40 or lower RPI) = .03%

Most probable end of season record = 14-16

I’ll be posting an RPI update for the Charlotte 49ers after every game (once data is available). You can subscribe to these updates without reading menial stories from my life by subscribing to this RSS feed. I will be launching a 49ers sports only blog in the next few months to cover this kind of information so you won’t have to read all this other stuff for too long.

Up and away!

Up and away!

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After starting the season with one of the longest losing streaks in program history, the Charlotte 49ers men’s bball program beat SIU in Carbondale, Illinois… and then this happened.

RPI BOOST OF THE WEEK:  Charlotte; RPI No. 228 (Up 96 spots from 324 last week):  The Niners finally snapped their losing streak and, along with boosting team morale, the win over Southern Illinois in Carbondale boosted their RPI… in grand fashion.

Ouch, I know its early in the season but we had an RPI of 324? That means only like 10 teams in the nation had RPIs worse than ours… absolutely ouch.

 

Here is our RPI plotted over time. It peaked after we beat UNCG and... well... you can follow the rest

Here is our RPI plotted over time. It peaked after we beat UNCG and... well... you can follow the rest

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This Thursday marks the first and only public exhibition for the Charlotte 49er Men’s Bball team vs. Phfiffphefr (or something spelled like that).

I’m excited for many reasons about this upcoming season but I’ll explain those later and just let this video explain,

(note: the last dunk in the video was chosen by ESPN as “Dunk of the Year”)

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Even though Chaney has now retired from Temple and Calipari has moved on to lose a national championship in OT, it never hurts to remember the glory days of the Atlantic 10 basketball conference.

From the March to Madness Top 10 Embarrassing Moments in College Basketball,

The scene – In 1994 UMass beat Temple 56-55 and UMass coach John
Calipari was in the middle of his after game press conference. Temple
coach John Chaney breaks into the conference and proceeds to tell
Calipari to shut up, that the next time he sees him he will
kick his ass, that he will tell his kid to knock his fucking kid in the mouth, and finally that he will kill him. At one point the players had to hold back the coaches (now that’s a switch). I guess restraint took a holiday that day.

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Zero Degrees!!!

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There are so many things wrong with this years NCAA tourney bracket. The selection committee has increasingly become hypocritical in their method for determining at-large bids to favor bids for power-conference teams.

They say: “Hey smaller leagues, play a better non-conference schedule and we’ll consider you next year.”

So the smaller leagues do… and then quality teams like Illinois St., UMass and Dayton don’t get in.

They say: “Hey smaller leagues, do better as a conference in RPI and we’ll consider you next year.”

So the smaller leagues do… and then RPI isn’t a factor because Kansas St. gets in because Beasley needs to play OJ Mayo for ratings while Arizona State and Virginia Tech were considered bubble teams.

But the biggest problem with this years NCAA tourney is the fact that many of the quality teams from non-BCS conferences were matched up against each other in the FIRST ROUND!

South Alabama vs Butler, Davidson vs Gonzaga, Drake vs Western Kentucky, UNLV vs Kent State. 4 BCS-threatening mid-majors gone after the first round.  The seeding doesn’t even have to be changed to fix this in three of the cases. Just send the lower seeded team to a different region to face a BCS team. Then you get,

South Alabama vs WVU and Arizona vs Butler

WKU vs Clemson and Villanova vs Drake

Oregon vs UNLV and Kent St. vs Miss St.

Davidson is a little harder to swap because they should be higher than a 10 seed.

On another note, Kentucky’s Athletic Director should get investment of the year award for only spending $50k to cancel their game vs. UMass earlier this season. The Musketeers would have beaten them and likely stole their NCAA bid.

So even though Oregon, Arizona, Villanova and Kentucky got NCAA bids over deserving teams from non-BCS conferences, what is even more shocking is that the Big East is even respected as a conference by the selection committee when they use their own criteria.

I found this post on a message board from an angry Datyon fan who makes a very solid point and I simply had to re-post it here:

Originally Posted by Flyer’95 View Post
Villanova’s inclusion just sends me over the edge. I understand that dayton didn’t finish strong. I understand that. But the Big East plays the game like nobody else. Do you know how many top 50 non-con wins the entire big east conference has?Five.Read that again. As a conference, the 14 teams in the Big East beat a collective total of 5 top 50 teams in the non-conference. Total. All together. They won five.

Dayton and Xavier alone beat that many top 50 non-con teams.

The big east only beat 19 top 100 teams total in the non-conference. Yes, that’s a total. For the whole conference. Fourteen big east teams beat a grand total of 19 top 100 teams in the non conference.

We beat six top 100 teams by ourselves in the non-conference portion of the schedule.

As an entire league, they beat TWO top 25 non conference teams. That’s fourteen teams playing about 13 games each. About 182 games total. And they only won 2 non-con games against the top 25 as a conference.

Dayton beat as many non-con top 25 teams as the entire Big East.

This whole process just ****ing disgusts me. The big east continues to dodge any real challenge in the non con. They refuse to travel. They enter the conference with inflated records, and then they are rewarded for it down the stretch for beating so many ‘good’ teams. I mean, it’s a joke.

Here are all the top 100 non-con wins for the BIG EAST:

Syracuse:
Beat: #41 SJU, #64 Cornell

St. John’s
Beat: no one

Cincinnati:
Beat: #70 miami Oh

Pitt:
beat: # 75 oklahoma state, #7 Duke

South Florida
Beat: #57 Florida State, #55 UAB

Rutgers
Beat: no one

West Virginia:
beat: #88 UMBC

Marquette
Beat: #72 IUPUI, #75 ok. state, #12 Wisconsin

Notre Dame
Beat: #53 kansas state

Georgetown:
Beat: #97 american

DePaul:
Beat: no one

Providence:
Beat: #50 Temple, #35 Arkansas, #57 Florida State

Louisville:
Beat #23 UNLV, #70 Miami OH, #59 Kentucky

Seton Hall:
Beat: no one

Does anybody ever bring this up in the media? Nope. And i’m not even saying we ‘deserved’ to be in. But nova certainly did not.

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