Why does Billy Donovan hate the SEC?

Seriously, that’s all I can come up with after reading about his proposal to seed the SEC basketball tournament not by conference regular season play, but based on RPI.  That would reduce the results of the conference’s regular season to virtual irrelevancy.  At which point you have to ask, why even bother to have one?

Of course, this being college basketball, he’ll be taken seriously.

Gee, maybe they could have forced better schedules last season by not letting Auburn and LSU play conference games.

This is what people like me refer to when we rail on about devaluing the regular season.


Filed under SEC Football

24 responses to “Why does Billy Donovan hate the SEC?

  1. WarD Eagle

    “…not letting Auburn….play conference games.”

    Dang if the truth doesn’t just suck sometimes.


  2. Castleberry

    Woah! A basketball post. Are you going for 7 million today? I’ll be sure and take a screenshot if I hit it. What do I win?


  3. Brandon

    They should just dispense with the regular season in college basketball entirely. Hell, why stop with college basketball, all sports, just one big tournament for each sport, settle it on the field baaaaayyyybeeee!


  4. Normaltown Mike

    Would he have won back to back natties if SEC teams had better schedules?

    Oh wait.


    • Brandon

      In my day, “natties” referred to a watered down but economically sensible brand of libation


    • D.N. Nation

      Uh, Donovan only has to go back to this past season to see why this is a lousy idea. Tennessee loaded up on quality OOC teams, beat a couple of them, and had a good RPI throughout the year as a result.

      But they also finished .500 in conference (should’ve been 7-9; two bad calls in Athens stole them a win) and tanked down the stretch. Ended the year with a bajillion-point loss in the NCAA first round. They had a better RPI but were seeded behind Georgia (9-7), just as they should’ve been.


  5. Go Dawgs!

    I’m all for doing away with divisions in SEC basketball, but the RPI seeding idea is taking the idea of maximizing the conference’s opportunities in the NCAA Tournament a bit far. Sure, it would promote tougher scheduling. However, the selection committee’s emphasis on RPI as criteria for selection already promotes tougher scheduling. Besides, if you’re really a tournament team, you’re going to be able to win one or two in the SECT anyway. In a sport that puts a premium on “settling it on the court”, you might as well resign yourself to having to win a game or two along the way.


  6. X-Dawg

    Why not seed the SEC Basketball tournament based on team GPA? Or how about team average height? The options are limitless! See Billy, I can do it too!


  7. Mayor of Dawgtown

    A football playoff in D-IA would undoubtedly get suggestions like Donovan’s and X-Dawg’s (only they would be serious) to pick which teams would be in the playoff.


  8. Texas_Dawg

    My biggest problem with the idea is that RPI is extremely flawed as far as statistics go.

    Pythagorean expectation based ratings (e.g. Ken Pomeroy’s) are far better at measuring team performance (which can be proven by how much more closely they correlate with future results than the overly simplistic RPI).


  9. Mike

    I am not sure I agree with Billy’s proposal, but I don’t think I agree with the good Senator’s take either.

    Using RPI for conference seeding does NOT devalue the regular season. All it does is insure that a team with a tougher OOC schedule is rewarded. Lest we forget, RPI DOES take into account wins and losses, as well as SOS.


    • But it would no longer matter where a team finished in the conference standings. RPI would trump that.

      Seriously, if you do that, what do you need a conference regular season for anymore?


      • Mike

        Like I said, I do not agree with the proposal. And perhaps I pick too many nits, but the proposal does not devalue the *whole* regular season, although to your point, it does devalue the conference schedule to some extent. However, you make it sound like the conference schedule will have NO, (or at least minimal) impact on RPI.

        As an aside, I hope they do away with using divisions to seed the SEC-T. I am not against maintaining division schedule formats in some way, but using the division for the full tournament seeding is not very smart, especially in years where there are HUGE differences in the overall quality of each division.

        And finally, completely getting off topic, congratulations to the UGA baseball team for two things;

        1.) Beating the Mighty Gators in one game of the SEC Baseball Tournament, thus enabling the Georgia team to…
        2.) Receive an at-large bid to the NCAA regional baseball tournament

        Good luck


        • Mike, adopt Donovan’s proposal, and here’s what happens: a non-conference game against a quality opponent becomes more important for purposes of seeding in the SEC’s own tourney than playing a conference game against a team with a worse RPI number. That’s seriously bent.

          It doesn’t matter if a conference schedule has an impact on a team’s RPI. Hell, every game does. But for purposes of playing for an SEC title, playing Auburn should always matter more than playing Butler. Otherwise, there’s no reason to have a conference in the first place; just let teams play whatever regular season schedules they like and move directly on to the NCAA tournament.


  10. dudetheplayer

    What we should do is seed teams in the preseason based off a general consensus of experts, and then let me them play a huge, expanded tournament schedule until all we’re left with is the two best teams (by consensus) at the end of the year.

    … Right?