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MVCfans.com 2016 Missouri Valley Conference Awards and Honors

As another Missouri Valley Conference basketball season concludes, today we honor several individuals who had a significant impact on their teams and the conference.

Below are our selections for Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year, Freshman of the Year, Newcomer of the Year, and Defensive Player of the Year.

Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year:

Barry Hinson, Southern Illinois
It isn’t often that the coach from a 4th place team wins a league coach of the year award, but we made an exception this year.  In his fourth season at the helm in Carbondale, Hinson took a 12-21 team that was predicted to finish 9th in the Valley and led them to an upper half finish (22-9 overall) while reinvigorating a once proud program.  Hinson exceeded all expectations this season and for that reason we are happy to honor Coach Barry Hinson – our 2016 MVCfans.com Coach of the Year.

 

Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year:
Markis McDuffie, Wichita State

In an MVC season dominated by upperclassmen, there was a relative lack of  prominent freshman in 2015-16.  One standout, however, even in a reserve role, was Markis McDuffie of Wichita State.  Despite only averaging 7ppg and 3 rebounds per game, McDuffie played critical minutes as the Shockers battled injuries all season long.  He showed flashes of exceptional play that make him a contender for All-Valley honors in years to come.  Congratulations to Markis McDuffie – the MVCfans.com Freshman of the Year.

 

Missouri Valley Conference Newcomer of the Year:
Dequon Miller, Missouri State

Miller, a transfer from Motlow College in Tennessee,  started all 30 games and was the leading scorer for the Bears in 2015-16.  His year will be remembered by many for big shots made in the closing moments of games against Oklahoma State, UNI, and Loyola.  Miller earned five weekly Newcomer awards this season and for his outstanding play this year, we recognize him as our MVCfans.com Newcomer of the Year.

 

Missouri Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Year:
Ron Baker, Wichita State
The most difficult of the honors awarded, Ron Baker of Wichita State is our defensive player of the year.  A case could be made for both Evansville’s Egidijus Mockevicius and Wichita State’s Fred VanVleet, but after careful consideration we chose Baker for his consistency, effort, and willingness to guard opponents’ toughest scorers on the defensive end.  Congratulations to Ron Baker – MVCfans.com 2015-16 Defensive Player of the Year.

 

MVCfans.com 2016 Player of the Year and All-MVC teams

I am honored once again to recognize the finest players in the Valley with my All-MVC first and second teams, as well as those deserving of honorable mention.

Larry Bird Player of the Year

Fred VanVleet – Wichita State

For the second time in three years, Fred VanVleet is our choice for MVC player of the year.  The seasons (and careers) of the other four players recognized as first teamers are in many ways also deserving, but the impact of VanVleet on the Shockers and the conference is immeasurable.  VanVleet averaged 12.3 points per game and 5.8 assists per game, but it was his composure and leadership that made him a three time 1st Team All-MVC performer.  While it is difficult to separate the careers and legacies of VanVleet and his backcourt partner, Ron Baker, – they will likely be recognized as one of the great pairings in MVC history – it is VanVleet who we ultimately felt was most deserving of this recognition.

First Team All-MVC

Fred VanVleet - Wichita State

Ron Baker – Wichita State

DJ Balentine – Evansville

Egidijus Mockevicius – Evansville

Anthony Beane Jr – SIU

 

Chris’ notes: As we said before the season started it felt like the first four guys on the list were shoo-ins for All-MVC and we were only going to struggle with the final first team selection.  To no one’s surprise, that is exactly what happened.  Beane gets the nod from us as he led the Salukis to a top half finish while averaging 19.4ppg.

Second Team All-MVC

Wes Washpun, UNI

Devonte Brown, Indiana State

Brenton Scott, Indiana State

Dequon Miller, Missouri State

DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell, Illinois State

 

Chris’ notes: Washpun heads the 2nd team and I would listen to the argument that he should be on the first team.  Really difficult decision there.  Brown, Scott and DAP were definitely among the best 10 in my opinion and I went with Miller over several other deserving candidates for the final spot.

Honorable Mention All-MVC

Matt Bohannon, UNI

Jeremy Morgan, UNI

Paris Lee, Illinois State

Milton Doyle, Loyola

Chris Kendrix, Missouri State

Reed Timmer, Drake

MiKyle McIntosh, Illinois State

Montel James, Loyola

Evan Wessel, Wichita State

 

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MVCfans.com basketball discussion

Final 2016 Arch Madness seeding probabilities – February 25

What we know:

1) Wichita State will be the #1 seed at Arch Madness

2) Evansville will be the #2 seed with a win over UNI or an Illinois State loss to Wichita State.  Redbirds can finish no lower than the 3 seed.

3) UNI will be the #4 seed with a win.  If UNI loses at Evansville, SIU will be #4 seed with a win over Missouri State.  Salukis can finish no lower than the 5 seed.

4) Missouri State has the inside track to the #6 seed and would avoid Thursday night in STL with a win.  For Indiana State to get the #6 seed, the Sycamores need to beat Bradley at home and have MSU loses at SIU.  Loyola can actually sneak into the #6 seed with a win at Drake, but they would need both Missouri State and Indiana lose on Saturday.

5) No matter the outcomes on Saturday, Bradley will be the #9 seed and Drake will be the #10 seed.

 

 
Thanks again to Hacksaw for his continued support in making this site enjoyable and informative for Missouri Valley Conference fans.

You can discuss this and more on the MVCfans.com Message Board

Updated Arch Madness seeding probabilities – February 21

Thanks to Hacksaw for his continued support!

With 10 conference games remaining, there are 1,024 different outcomes for the remainder of the conference season. The below charts break down the possible finishes. The order used for the RPI tiebreaker is listed in the chart, however as some teams have RPI’s very near one another, it’s possible some movement could affect the probabilities.

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 10 conference games with weighted odds attached to them (using Sagarin’s Predictor). These odds are then used to calculate the below seeding probabilities.

You can discuss this and more on the MVCfans.com Message Board

Updated 2016 Arch Madness seeding probabilities

Note: Updated following the conclusion of last night’s MVC games.

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 RPI tiebreaker from The RPI Report as of February 18 is: WSU 50, UE 91, ISUr 107, UNI 115, SIU 128, ISUb 168, LUC 219, MSU 223, BU 296, DU 306.

 

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 20 conference games with weighted odds attached to them (using Sagarin’s Predictor). These odds are then used to calculate the below seeding probabilities.

You can discuss this and more on the MVCfans.com Message Board

2016 Arch Madness seeding probabilities – February 14

Back by popular demand – one of everyone’s 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 (ISUr 5, WSU 21, UNI 28, BU 66, ISUb 117, UE 250, DU 270, MSU 273, LUC 281, SIU 330).

 

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 20 conference games with weighted odds attached to them (using Sagarin’s Predictor). These odds are then used to calculate the below seeding probabilities.

 

You can discuss this and more on the MVCfans.com Message Board

2016 Arch Madness Seating Chart

 


 
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Listen: Inside the Valley Podcast – Feb 8

Derrick Docket, MVC Associate Commissioner for New Media & Technology, hosts another edition of Inside the Valley.

Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings – Updated Jan. 28

Knee jerk reaction to tonight’s classic battle between the Aces and Salukis:

MVC Power Rankings

1) Wichita State 9-0 – Shockers have a two game lead as they make they turn and it doesn’t look like anyone is going to catch them.
2) Evansville 7-2 – DJ Balentine hit the shot of the year in Valley play with his three pointer tonight to send the Aces into OT vs SIU. Huge game this weekend vs Wichita State.
3) SIU 7-2- Salukis are 18-4! Holy smokes. Yes, I get that the out of conference schedule was weak, but cmon, 18-4? Wow.
4) Indiana State 6-3 - Sycs have three league losses (one to each of the teams above) but hammered the Aces in Terre Haute, so don’t sleep on Greg Lansing’s squad.
5) Illinois State 6-3 -  See above: Redbirds losses are all to teams ranked above them here. Ceiling is high for this group if Muller can get everyone on board.
6) Missouri State 4-5- The fact that a team is 8-13 overall and projected to avoid Thursday night in STL says more about the bottom of the league than I can add.
7) UNI 3-6 – Panthers were ranked 2nd in our last MVC update and then the floor dropped out from underneath them. Instead of worrying about NCAA at large chances, UNI fans are relegated to trying to avoid the indignity of the play in round at Arch Madness.
8 ) Loyola 2-7 – Loyola owns a win at UNI, but they are slotted behind them here simply due to the fact that the Ramblers lost to Bradley.
9) Drake 0-9 – Drake looks lost, but I just didn’t have the guts to move Bradley out of last place.
10) Bradley 1-8 – Remember when the Braves opened the season with a win over Ball State? Seems like a lifetime ago.

 

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Missouri Valley Conference Power Rankings – Updated Dec. 30

For the first time in several years, the Valley doesn’t have an overwhelming favorite to win the league as conference season begins today. At different times over the past couple of weeks, I had the Aces, Shockers, and Panthers all atop these rankings only to have an untimely or surprising loss derail them one by one. I’ve yet to meet anyone confident enough to tell me with certainty where  the Valley is headed this year, but most seem to agree that circumstances could result in a one bid league. My gut tells me we have 2 teams dancing on Selection Sunday, but league officials might need a couple extra doses of Maalox for the heartburn as the calendar turns to March.

MVC Power Rankings

1) Wichita State 6-5 – The Shockers go back to the head of the class because a true inspection reveals that WSU has no “bad losses” as all five have been to potential NCAA teams including several played without Fred VanVleet. The Shockers convincing win over Utah (who subsequently won at Duke) is probably the truest indication that the Shockers deserve to be here.
2) Northern Iowa 8-5 – I suspect that the Panthers will be one of the more difficult teams for the Selection Committee to assess in March. Is there a school with a better pair of wins than UNC and Iowa State? Maybe not, but UNI’s five losses have all been to teams unlikely to make the NCAA tournament and that could be difficult to overcome without an outstanding record in league play.
3) Evansville 11-2- Aces would have been slotted atop this poll if they hadn’t laid an egg at Arkansas and had instead entered conference play with just one loss to Top 10 Providence. Instead, Evansville put themselves in a bad situation without a single non-conference win over a team likely to make the NCAA tournament (barring an automatic bid).
4) Southern Illinois 11-2 - After the top 3, things get awfully muddled. I acknowledge their schedule had plenty of 200+ RPI opponents, but SIU beat Kent State and Oakland which are better wins than either of the next two schools have that were considered for this spot. We’ll give Barry Hinson the benefit of the doubt and put the Salukis fourth… for now. Huge game vs Loyola tonight.
5) Loyola 7-5 -  Frankly, I expected more out of the Ramblers this year and it’s not a great sign when an upper half MVC team has an RPI of 217 entering league play. Loyola opens their MVC schedule with games against SIU, IndSt, IllSt, Missouri St, and Bradley. To retain this spot, Ramblers need to win at least 3 of those games.
6) Illinois State 6-7 – If Loyola has been disappointing, Illinois State’s performance thus far has been head scratching. Redbirds have zero quality wins – zero. Seriously, check for yourself (best win is either 67-66 over 5-5 Morehead St or 63-61 over 4-6 Murray State). Yikes. If we needed to sum up ISU in one word – underachieving.
7) Indiana State 6-6 – Sycamores take a three games winning streak into league play including a road win at SLU. I always felt Greg Lansing was a very good coach and he’ll need to do one of his best jobs to finish above .500 this year.
8 ) Drake 5-7 – I almost slotted the Bulldogs one spot higher because their recent losses to DePaul, Nevada and Iowa were all close and competitive. That’s how bad things have gotten at the bottom of the MVC.
9) Missouri State 4-8 – I’m not quite sure how you go into Stillwater and beat Oklahoma State, follow that up with a dominant win over Oral Roberts and then lose at home to previously winless SEMO.
10) Bradley 2-11 – If there was ever a season that the history books and media guides should omit from existence, the Braves’ season in 2015-16 would meet all the criteria. Somewhere, Kurt Kanaskie has his fingers crossed.

 

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