### 2015 Arch Madness seeding probabilities – updated February 19

Chris’ note: Thanks again to Hacksaw for keeping us all up to date on the 2015 Arch Madness seeding probabilities.

With 15 conference games remaining, there are 32,768 different outcomes for the remainder of the conference season. The below charts break down the possible finishes. The current order for the NC SOS tiebreaker from ESPN is: WSU 28, DU 40, ISUr 42, MSU 120, UNI 151, UE 196, LUC 240, ISUb 249, BU 254, SIU 348.

The above charts take into account each possible scenario as an equally-weighted possibility. For a more realistic projection of where teams may be seeded, below you will see the remaining 15 conference games with weighted odds attached to them (using Sagarin’s Predictor, pulled from rpiforecast.com). These odds are then used to calculate the below seeding probabilities.

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### 2015 Arch Madness seeding probabilities – February 16

It’s time again for one of my favorite features of The MVC Report – thanks to Hacksaw for his continued contribution.

With 20 conference games remaining, there are 1,048,576 different outcomes for the remainder of the conference season. The below charts break down the possible finishes. The top chart is the percentage of scenarios where each team finishes in each respective tournament seed, and the bottom chart is the actual count of those scenarios. These charts take into account the head-to-head tiebreaker (and mini round-robin for a 3+ way tie), if this does not break the tie, it goes to the out of conference strength of schedule tiebreaker. Currently that order is what I have from ESPN (WSU 27, DU 37, ISUr 42, MSU 114, UNI 150, UE 201, LUC 231, ISUb 250, BU 253, SIU 348).

The above charts take into account each possible scenario as a pure 50%/50% possibility. For a more realistic likelihood of where teams may be seeded, below you will see the remaining 20 conference games with weighted odds attached to them (from rpiforecast.com). These odds are then used to calculate the below seeding probabilities.

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### Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings – Updated February 11

With only five league games to play, the Missouri Valley Conference regular season title remains up for grabs.  Likewise, the other eight teams have the potential to significantly move up or down the MVC pecking order.  Starting this weekend, we will begin posting regular updates of Hacksaw’s seeding probabilities.

## MVC Power Rankings

1) Northern Iowa 23-2, 12-1 - Led by MVC Player of the Year front-runner Seth Tuttle, Panthers cruised past Wichita State in Cedar Falls.  It’s easy to imagine the season finale in Wichita on February 28 being for the MVC title.
2) Wichita State 22-3, 12-1 - Wichita State will likely have a chance to defend their Valley title at home on the final day of the season.  While it’s hard to bet against Gregg Marshall, the Shockers can’t look too far ahead as they have 3 road games before then.
3) Indiana State 12-13, 8-5 - A sub .500 team sitting in 3rd place in the Valley with only 5 games to play?  I’m as surprised as you are, but the Sycamores have earned this spot.  Save for a home game vs the Shockers, it’s possible the Sycs finish 4-1.
4) Illinois State 15-10, 7-6 - Redbirds are 0-5 versus the teams above and 7-1 versus the teams below-  including a 26 point win over Evansville. Fourth place seems exactly right for this squad.
5) Evansville 17-8, 7-6 -  Losing Egidjus Mockevicius to injury has hampered the Aces, but it’s hardly an excuse for the Aces’ average play. That said, UE has the star power to contend with the top teams when healthy and could be a surprise team in March.
6) Drake 8-17, 5-8  – I buried the Bulldogs earlier this season, so I need to give them credit for their recent success.  Bulldogs have won 4 of 5 and have been playing well during the second half of the season.
7) Loyola 15-10, 5-8 - Ramblers have a difficult stretch to end the season – 3 of their final 5 games on the road along with UNI at home.
8 ) Bradley 8-18, 3-10 - Bradley gets the surprise victory of the week with their upset victory at Evansville, but having lost 10 of 12 keeps them in strong contention for Thursday night at Arch Madness.
9) Southern Illinois 10-16, 3-10 - Although SIU lost both regular season matchups with Missouri State, the Salukis move up from last place based on their victory over Illinois State last week.
10) Missouri State 9-16, 3-10 - Bears have lost 10 out of 11 and haven’t played well in the absence of Marcus Marshall.

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### #18 UNI defeats #12 Wichita State; end Shockers 27 game MVC winning streak

In one of the biggest Missouri Valley Conference regular season games in years, #18 Northern Iowa routed #12 Wichita State 70-54 in Cedar Falls on Saturday. In the first Valley game between ranked opponents in 33 years, UNI snapped the Shockers’ 27 game regular season conference winning streak.

The Panthers used a 21-3 scoring run in the first half to take a 37-24 lead into the intermission. UNI was able to keep distance between themselves and WSU throughout the second half as Seth Tuttle elevated himself to the top of the MVC-POY ballot with a career-high 29 points. Wes Washpun scored 16 points off the bench for UNI.

The teams will meet again on February 28th in Wichita as the regular season finale for both teams.

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### Report: MVC and Mountain West agree to resume Conference Challenge

A report from Dave Reynolds of the Peoria-Journal Star confirms that the Missouri Valley Conference and the Mountain West Conference have agreed to resume the conference challenge after a three year absence.

..”the Missouri Valley Conference and the Mountain West Conference are set to renew their MVC-MWC Challenge series for men’s basketball beginning either next year or the 2016-17 season.

According to MVC commissioner Doug Elgin, the leagues have reached an agreement for a four-year series. An announcement is expected next month, he said, detailing the matchups and what season the games would start.”

During the first 4 years of the challenge from 2009-2012, the Mountain West defeated the Valley 23-13.

### Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings – Updated January 18

We are about 1/3 of the way through Valley conference play so let’s take a look where teams stand. Wichita State and UNI appear to be in great position for NCAA bids (and hopefully strong seeds) while Loyola and Evansville are possible NIT participants. Indiana State started 5-0 in league play after a dismal out of conference performance, but the Sycs lost yesterday to bottom dweller Drake, which spared me the dilemma of whether or not I should rank them in the Top 2 as some Twitter followers suggested.

## MVC Power Rankings

1) Wichita State 16-2, 6-0 – The Shockers regain the top position in these rankings after another impressive Valley start. I thought yesterday’s game in Evansville might be the game where the Shox slipped and their league winning streak ended, but Ron Baker made sure that didn’t happen as WSU rolled.
2) Northern Iowa 15-2, 4-1 – Panthers have won 4 straight after a close loss at Evansville, but they drop to #2 this update as a result. More importantly, UNI remains firmly in the Top 25 and is positioned for an NCAA at large bid.
3) Loyola 13-4, 3-2 - Ramblers get the nod here due to their head to head win at Evansville and the fact that their only two league losses were to WSU and UNI. Porter Moser is my pick for Valley Coach of the Year right now.
4) Evansville 13-5, 3-3 - The New Year’s Day win over UNI seems like ages ago and the Aces are just 2-3 since then with the only wins over Bradley and Missouri State. With two of the best players in the league, I think Aces can go on a run if the supporting pieces step up.
5) Indiana State 9-9, 5-1 -  Losing yesterday at Drake brought the Sycs back down to earth after an impressive 5-0 start in Valley play. While their record should put them higher in these rankings, they’ve yet to play WSU, UNI, or Loyola so losses could mount quickly if the Drake performance is repeated.
6) Illinois State 11-7, 3-3 – My gut says the Redbirds are firmly above the bottom four teams, but they’ve yet to win against an upper division Valley foe so I don’t think we can rule out Thursday night in STL just yet.
7) Missouri State 8-9, 2-3 – The loss of Marcus Marshall is significant for Paul Lusk, but it also might galvanize the remaining group. An expected loss at UNI this afternoon would drop the Bears to 2-4 with the Shockers on deck. However, three winnable games follow and that should tell us much more about MSU.
8 ) Drake 4-14, 1-5 – I haven’t given the Bulldogs much love this season (and for good reason), but it’s time they get their due after a surprising win over previously unbeaten Indiana State. They get promoted to 8 after the win which is better than anything the bottom two have achieved of late.
9) Bradley 6-13, 1-5 – Braves have lost 4 straight by double-digits, but a earlier win over SIU means they must be better than the Salukis, right? Looks like another long winter in Peoria for Braves fans.
10) Southern Illinois 7-11, 0-5 – Barry Hinson’s club is winless in MVC play and has lost 7 in a row overall heading into tonight’s game against Loyola. Anthony Beane is averaging 16.2ppg but isn’t hitting at a high percentage and the rest of the Salukis haven’t been better – 321st as a team in scoring and 347th in assists per game. Ouch.

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### News-Leader Report: Marcus Marshall will transfer from Missouri State

In a surprising and swift turn of events, Lyndal Scranton from the Springfield News-Leader reported today that the MVC’s second leading scorer, Marcus Marshall, would be transferring from Missouri State.

Coach Paul Lusk said that Marcus Marshall, suspended indefinitely before Wednesday’s game for “conduct detrimental to the team,” will not return to the Bears.

Lusk called it a mutual decision and that Marshall, during a meeting between the two Friday afternoon, asked for his release.

“We both mutually decided he wants to look for other opportunities,” Lusk said. “We’ll grant him his release at the end of the semester if he’s in good academic standing.”

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### North Dakota St rallies past Illinois St to earn 4th straight FCS national title

In a game befitting it’s “championship game” title, Missouri Valley Football Conference co-champions North Dakota State and Illinois State staged a classic football game on Saturday afternoon in Frisco, Texas. Searching for their first ever football national title, the Redbirds took a late 27-23 lead on QB Tre Robertson’s 58-yard TD run with 1:58 remaining. The defending champion Bison repsonded, however, and won the game 29-27 when NDSU QB Carson Wentz scored from five yards out with just 37 seconds left in the game.

The Bison finished their season 15-1, earning their 4th consecutive FCS national championship. The Redbirds finished their season 13-2.

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### Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings – Updated December 28

As the Missouri Valley Conference nears the conclusion of the non-conference portion of the college basketball season, we offer our mid-year report on the league as a whole.  Updated power rankings are posted below and mid-season honorees will be named later this week. There is some significant shakeup since our last update and this is the first without Wichita St atop the poll.

## MVC Power Rankings

1) Northern Iowa 10-1 – While it’s been good for the MVC to have a dominant team like Wichita State, it’s a better problem for them to have an equal.  UNI sits at #23 in the national polls with only a 2OT loss at VCU.  As WSU has struggled, we move the Panthers to top of the power rankings.. for now.
2) Wichita State 10-2 – The Shockers struggled mightily (but won) against Alabama and Hawaii, however, they couldn’t overcome GW on Christmas Day.  WSU has had offensive struggles and Coach Marshall will need the play of both Fred VanVleet and Ron Baker to improve to capture another MVC title.
3) Loyola 10-2 - Porter Moser’s club is the surprise of the Valley so far and we’ve given the Ramblers a battlefield promotion this week based on their 18 point victory over Texas Tech and solid win over Boise State.  It’s almost impossible to quantify what Milton Doyle’s unexpected return has done for Loyola.
4) Evansville 9-2 - The Aces have two losses this season (each by 2 points), but lack the signature wins of the teams ahead of them in these rankings.  A New Year’s Day MVC opener at home against Top 25 UNI should bring out a huge crowd and UE would send a resounding message to the rest of the league if they could pull off a victory.
5) Illinois State 7-4 -  ISU sits firmly in the middle of these rankings – Redbirds play well enough at times to beat the teams at the top of the MVC and poorly enough at times to lose to the bottom teams.
6) Missouri State 6-6 – Bears have scuffled in the early going and dropped three consecutive games prior to an important revenge victory over Oral Roberts on Monday.  Marcus Marshall has been tremendous averaging 22.0 ppg.

7-10) There is very little separating the bottom 4 teams so they are listed simply as Thursday night teams for this update:

Southern Illinois 7-6  A road loss to SEMO and home losses to New Orleans and Murray State aren’t all that bad considering the next three resumes.
Bradley 4-8 – Braves have lost 4 of 5 with only win over Eureka?
Indiana State 4-7 – Sycamores have lost 6 of 7 with only win over Truman State?
Drake 3-9 – Bulldogs own just three wins – over IUPUI, Jackson State, and Simpson College.

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### FCS National Championship will be an MVFC matchup – Illinois St vs North Dakota St

For the first time in FCS history, two teams from the same league will play one another in the title game. The FCS began conducting a tournament in 1978 (then called I-AA).

Illinois State (13-1) is making its first title game appearance. The Redbirds beat UNI, Eastern Washington and New Hampshire in the playoffs to get there.

North Dakota State (14-1) is making its fourth-straight title game trip. The Bison are the three-time defending national champions and beat South Dakota State, Coastal Carolina and Sam Houston State to reach Frisco this year.

The teams did not play each other this year and shared the MVFC title with identical 7-1 league records (both teams lost at UNI).

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