Plain and simple: The Mountain West teams got screwed by the selection committee in where teams were placed and seeded. The two gigantic, glaring, huge or insert any other adjective to describe something big errors are New Mexico being placed as a No. 3 seed and Colorado State as a No. 8 seed.
New Mexico had the resume to be a darkhorse No. 1 seed, but most thought the Lobos would be a No. 2 seed either in the Los Angeles or Arlington, Texas region. A three seed and a two seed is not a big difference, but the perception of the league takes a hit with this seeding. The Mountain West was considered at times the best conference, and if not very close to being there. So, seeing their double-champion get hit with a three-seed is a slap in the face.
Then there is the Colorado St. Rams who earned an eight seed, lower than San Diego State, and are playing Missouri. The Rams had an RPI of 18, and went 11-7 against the top-100 of the RPI, so that makes complete sense to have them be placed BELOW San Diego State. The two teams split their regular season series, the Aztecs had three fewer wins, two more losses, 8-10 against the top-100 of the RPI and had an RPI of 32. The only area where San Diego State was better was that they were 5-8 against the top-50 while Colorado State was 3-7.
The committee then somehow gave us a rematch of No. 5 UNLV vs. No. 12 Cal, but they also gave a big advantage to Cal by having the game being played in San Jose. The two teams met on the campus of Cal back on Dec. 9, and UNLV won 76-75.
Having Boise State in the play-in game is maybe a bit of a light, but Broncos fans can not complain much since this is the first time that they have earned an at-large selection to the NCAA tournament.
As for San Diego State, they were probably over seeded by a line or two, so bully for them for getting a seven seed.
Overall, it looks like the selection committee did not respect the Mountain West which did end up claiming the top conference. The only way the Mountain West can prove the selection committee wrong is to win games in the tournament, and get multiple teams to the second weekend. New Mexico must move to the Sweet 16, and then there needs to be at least one other team to do so. In reality, if these Mountain West teams play up to their ability they all have a real chance to be a Sweet 16 team.
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