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The Missouri Valley Conference is ...

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Bubbler, Dec 10, 2006.

  1. AnotherThingComing

    AnotherThingComing New Member

    It goes both ways. Most of the Valley coaches insist on home-and-homes or neutral-site games, or they won't play the majors. They won't even consider playing a 2-for-1. It seems they are letting their egos get in the way of what is best for the program.

    In fact, word is that these coaches are upset with Turgeon at Wichita State for agreeing to play LSU and Syracuse in a one-game contract at their place, because it makes the rest of them look bad. But playing these road games sure has worked out OK for the Shockers.
  2. wickedwritah

    wickedwritah Guest

    ATC, it does put the other MVC schools at a disadvantage when negotiating contracts because Witchita is doing that. This isn't football, where there's very few non-conference openings in the schedule. The other coaches probably feel that they've shown their stuff consistently over the past few years, so why do they need to always be the team on the road?
  3. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    Um, the Big 12 has teams in metropolises like Lubbock, Stillwater, Lawrence, Columbia, Ames, etc. Not germane to whether they're among the best on the court. This isn't parallel to the MCC when it got three teams in the NCAA tournament one year and quickly faded away. The MVC has been quality for decades. I would agree with Bubbler's assertion that it's a basketball major.
  4. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    News flash: big-time teams don't schedule home-and-homes with smaller-time teams unless there's a connection with one of the players (think Duke scheduling road games against schools in areas where his guys came from). That includes cuddly-wuddly mid-major-all-growed-up Gonzaga, whose road non-conference games are as follows: Washington State, Georgia, Duke (neutral site), Texas (neutral site) and Virginia. I doubt that if Wichita State becomes a consistent top 25 team that they'll be having 1-and-1s with Oral Roberts and UMKC.

    As for "quality for decades" -- maybe quality as in top of the mid-major pops, but let's give it another two or three seasons of sustained excellence before we declare it a major for sure.
  5. AnotherThingComing

    AnotherThingComing New Member

    I think you're right, Wicked, it's not fair for the Valley to always be the team on the road. But like MM said, Duke's not going to visit Carbondale in a 1-for-1, so you do what you have to do, whether it be neutral sites or 2-for-1s or whatever. The Valley teams need the big-time games more than the "major" conferences do, so I think they have to be more flexible on their demands when it comes to scheduling.

    You had a Valley team left out of the NCAAs with an RPI of 20-whatever last season, and Wichita State responded to that by toughening its nonconference schedule even more and going on the road to play them, while the rest of the league's coaches got pissed about that, ranted and raved about how nobody will play them, and went ahead and loaded up on cupcake nonconference schedules themselves (with some exceptions). When conference season rolls around, which team do you think will be better off?
  6. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    But they're among the top levels of interest in places like Denver, St. Louis, Kansas City, Dallas, and Houston, if you want to nitpick. The point is, the MVC is in towns where they're the the biggest show in town, when they're competing against very little else. The Big 12 is just that, big.

    Again, I reiterate the level of basketball is just as good as it is in a lot of major conferences. I'm not arguing that. But in the grand scheme of things the conference is still mid major. Will be for a few more years. Until they're averaging 4-5 teams in the tourney every year on a regular basis, until teams are perenial top 10 squads, and until they get the respect that lets other schools schedule home and homes with them, insteading of having to go into the Patriot League or Horizon League or whatever, they won't be. They're still the little league that could.
  7. D-3 Fan

    D-3 Fan Well-Known Member

    Drake doesn't have the title of smallest arena anymore. UNI just opened up their new basketball facility (McLeod Center) several weeks ago. The McLeod holds 6750. Their former home, the UNI-Dome, holds 16,324. The football team still plays at the Dome.

  8. Bob Cook

    Bob Cook Active Member

    We all forget that the MVC was major long before it was a mid-major. I believe Oklahoma State's (then A&M) two titles came as a MVC member.

    The MVC is likely to be strong for a while because its commissioner successfully browbeat its members into his Billy Beane-styling gaming of the RPI. Well, gaming is a bit crude, but he figured out how to make it move in the MVC's favor. The strategy -- part one, have as many teams as possible finish with winning records in nonconference play. Part two, make sure those teams beat the real scrubs on that schedule (RPI of 150 or less). Part three, have those teams schedule a few games against major-conference teams, or high mid-majors -- but those don't necessarily have to be at the gym of that conference's top school. In fact, it's preferable if it weren't. You want games you know have a chance to win. (Losing gets your nothing -- otherwise, the SWAC, which had the nation's toughest nonconference schedule last season, would have given a pass for finishing with the nation's worst nonconference record.) Part four, in the conference schedule, hope everything is even enough so the top five or six play each evenly. Last season, the MVC's top six's records against the others ranged from 6-4 to 4-6. Oh, and part five, those top five or six should beat up the bottom of the league consistently.

    Bingo, you have six teams with an NCAA-worthy RPI.

    This year, the MVC (and others, such as the Colonial, which not as intentionally followed a similar tack last season) is benefiting from mid-majors' overall great play against major conferences. Indiana State's defeat of Butler, thanks to who the Bulldogs have beaten, suddenly lifts everyone in the MVC. Missouri State over Wisconsin will loom large. For that matter, lousy Western Michigan's defeat of Virginia Tech gives the MAC a little more juice. The MVC didn't mean to schedule so many excellent teams (except Wichita State, whose deviation from the MVC formula is what drew some abuse from conference members), but it so happens it has played well against them.

    Of course, you're probably also seeing the advantage, in one night, a team with more experience can have over a team with more talent. Ohio State and its great freshmen could probably beat Wichita State nine out of 10 nights. But would a late tournament game, with pressure those freshmen haven't felt, be that one?

    Anyway, the argument that the MVC doesn't "deserve" as many seeds as it should get because it's not a "major" is patently absurd. Either your teams are good enough this year, or they aren't -- how your school and conference played the last 20 years shouldn't enter into it. It's the same bullshit argument that had people vote to put Florida in the BCS championship because Michigan "lost too late," or "didn't play a game late enough," or "shouldn't be in because it didn't win its own conference." Are you the second-best team or not? Isn't that all that matters?
  9. D-3 Fan

    D-3 Fan Well-Known Member

    Bob, also add that during their heyday, Oklahoma (A&M) State, Louisville, Cincinnati, Butler, Tulsa, Houston, Memphis, and New Mexico State were members in the league.
  10. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    And North Texas, until Hayden Fry took them independent to try to get them into the SWC. That didn't work too well.

    (By the way, AQB is slipping. I was expecting to see the Wichita State cheerleader.)
  11. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    Hayden Fox woulda gotten them there.
  12. D-3 Fan

    D-3 Fan Well-Known Member

    With Luther Van Dam as an assistant? I'll take Teddy Ruxpin.
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