Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

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BleedingBLue
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by BleedingBLue » Mon Nov 04, 2019 5:25 pm

Cataholic wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:56 pm
wapiti wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:37 pm
Cataholic wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:19 pm
Catprint wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:16 pm
Two fold problem:
1) Playing down happens out west due to the dearth of D1 teams. In the east, CAA has MEAC, NEC, Southern, Big South, Patriot and OVC conferences to choose from with little travel issues. Out west, we have Southland and MVFC (kinda). So teams like PSU and ISU can't afford to pay NEC and MEAC teams to come out west. They are forced to find DII schools to fill the schedule. Part of the reason Cal Poly and UND only play 11 games this year.

2) Playing up to FBS is mostly about the money. In a 12 game schedule, it is a wise decision to take the money because you still have 11 games to hit 7 D1 wins. The 12 game schedule does not change the 7 D1 win threshold so it is money in the bank. In a normal 11 game season, it comes down to scheduling. It is better for some teams to schedule an FBS team, lose and still make the 7 wins (like EWU does most years). What i don't understand is the teams that play two FBS teams. Really a tough scheduling issue.
Agreed. What I was trying to say is that the eastern teams have a scheduling advantage that the playoff committee should recognize. Portland State this year was basically done even before the season started: 2 FBS and 2 D2 games on the schedule. They would have had to go 7-1 the rest of the season to become playoff eligible. In the meantime, average CAA teams like Stony Brook has 2 NEAC games and 1 Patriot League game on the schedule (and all wins).

Good leadership in the Big Sky could form more “conference challenge” alignments that would offer more MVFC, Ohio Valley, Southland and Pioneer League matchups.

Is there a rumor that the WAC may restart football at the FCS level??? Dixie and NMSU as the first 2 members and then several Big Sky Teams may switch over, such as the 3 cali teams and NAU and maybe even SUU???

Having a 2nd FCS conference out West would help with scheduling and it should also have an auto bid to playoffs if 4 or 5 Big Sky teams switched.
Part of the rumor included a plan to eventually go FBS too.
There are some rumors floating around and the move makes sense on many levels. Lots of questions about who would join the conference. I am guessing it will consist of more D2 teams moving up to join the conference versus teams leaving the Big Sky. But then again, the Big Sky seems to have missed on various items and maybe teams see greener pastures by moving on. The WAC has a storied history and maybe just the name could create more marketing appeal for a team like Sac State. When #3 Weber played #6 Sacramento last week, they only managed to draw 11,000 people in a metro area of more than 2 million people.
As I understand it, the WAC would be interested in at least 1 other team in NM and 1 team in AZ moving up, and also taking Davis, Poly and SUU. That leaves a 10 team Big Sky which would be great, and a 7 team WAC. Grand Canyon has talked about adding football, and they have ridiculous amounts of funding so it's totally possible.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catsrgrood » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:09 pm

Kind of stating the obvious here, but I see this weekend as an absolute must win.
The odds are low that the Cats get in the playoffs at 7-5 anyway, but if one of those losses is to UNC, I think those odds are even more slim. That would be the worst loss of the season and relatively fresh on the minds of the committee come selection Sunday. Also puts a ton of pressure on the final two weeks with zero margin for error.

Go 3-0 the next 3 weeks and they’re flirting with a seed and likely get one.
Go 2-1 and they’re in, but playing first round.
Go 1-2 and it’s very much up in the air



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:24 am

Week 11 – Second Installment – Review of games on 9 November and Playoff Possibilities

Ok, as promised, I cut the fire hose in two – give us all a break. I am on a trip to Denver so I have extra time in the evening without the wife asking if I am coming to bed before midnight while finishing my second installment. First, we will look briefly at the UNC game and then look at the Big Sky games and how they affect playoff positioning. Then I will look at each of the possible multi-bid conferences and suggest what needs to happen this weekend to improve the Cats chances for a playoff spot or even a seed. Next week, I will track how the games went – For or Against the Cats.

Quick refresher on Cat’s playoff chances:
1) Auto bid – Almost no chance.
2) Playoff Seed – Win out and a sure thing. Win two out of three (first two), remotely possible.
3) Playoff first round game – Win 2 of 3 and we are in. Win only 1? 7-5 will be highly questionable and will depend on many teams and what they do in next three weeks – UND, UCD, SIU, YSU, UIW, SHSU – to name just a few of three letter teams that would affect the Cats chances. There are more permutations that get the Cats in at 7-5 than stars in the sky at this point. Just say possible but not probable. Lots of comments before this post about 7-5 options. One thing to consider is we will have lost our last two games and if you look at the last couple of years the committee gives strong consideration to trends. Last year Lamar with only 6 DI wins got in over a 4th place 7-4 MVFC team – Indiana State – because Lamar had a six game winning streak. So the argument “Power 3 conferences are so much better” doesn’t seem to have as much sway with the committee as we would like to believe.

Polls
Cats are 12th in Stats and 14th in coaches. The two Ivy League teams don't count so we are basically 10th and 12th. Kennesaw is over rated so 10/11th as far as playoffs. The Top 10 from the commitee came out on Wednesday and it followed 1-9 in the Stats poll and #10 was a three letter abbreviation for a state university .... UNH? Moved from 23rd to #10? And they play JMU this weekend and only play 11 games? And they lost to two underwhelming opponents at the start of the season? Come on! What kind of joke is this? Oh well, it means nothing....

Cats vs UNC

Not really much to say about this game. While UNC is 2-3 in conference play and Cats only 3-2; the reality is the Bears have only beat the two Idaho teams who are rushing to the bottom as fast as they can – competing with SUU and Cal Poly. And these wins are the Bears only two wins all year.

Of course, this is a must win and it really needs to be a substantial win to keep us high in the eyes of the committee. We can’t afford to drop in the rankings with the final two games coming up.

Offense

Tight ends catch a pass? Wheel house routes? By mid-3rd qtr. – 23 passes; 23 rushes? What team was I watching last week? We can assume this trend will continue. Have to avoid the predictability. UNC has the worst defense in the league (not withstanding their recent wins). If you look at only conference games, it is even worse. Their rushing defense is 12th out of 13th. While the Cats offense has still been suspect, it HAS to be strong enough to over power UNC. Else the next two weeks will be a lost cause in any shootout with UC Davis and UM.

Defense

Our defense continues to shine. In Big Sky only games, Cats are number 4 in rushing defense; number 3 in pass defense and number 1 in overall defense. This is clearly seen in the last couple of games. We need to shut down the UNC passing game and we will win the battle inside. Nothing all of you don’t know already. Hoping TA is healthy and the DB’s play well with Greg Filer out the rest of the year as a redshirt. Strength against strength in the passing game – well best UNC has.

BIG SKY PLAYOFF CHANCES
(Only playoff possible teams shown due to screen limitations while traveling)





As the chart shows, there are 7 teams in the Big Sky still with a remote chance of getting in (including UND). Eastern Washington seems like it might be on the cusp if they win out. This seems odd given their poor start. However, they would be 7-5, 6 D1 wins; 4 game win streak and last year’s runner up. As of this week, EWU has no votes in any poll so it will be a long shot. UC Davis has to win out and don’t see that happening. Certainly the MSU game will be big for UC Davis but they finish against Sac State so hard to see them winning all three. UND playing only 11 games so they have to win 2 of next 3 to qualify. Likely will qualify (see below) but they will be on the bubble and their chances will depend on a whole lot of other games going on their way.

I think Weber, Sac and the Griz are all going to make the playoffs barring some sort of complete unexpected meltdown. For example, if Sac loses to UC Davis, they are still going to be 8-4. The Griz could lose their last two games and they will be in at 8-4. None of these teams are going to lose their last three games. I think it is possible the Big Sky gets at least 4, maybe 5 teams including UND into the playoffs.

Big Sky Games
• Griz vs Idaho
o Griz should win easily. Even on the Road. Idaho has been up and down all year. Beat Eastern, lost to UNC. I don’t think they have the defense to stop the Griz nor the offensive fire power to keep up with them. With the win, Griz will be guaranteed a playoff spot regardless of last two weeks’ outcome.
 Desired Outcome: Griz Loss
 Likely Outcome: Griz Win

Sac vs NAU
o Will Thomson come back from injury? Big unknown. Unlike with Humphrey at the Griz, Sac takes big step down to their 2nd string QB. Nonetheless, I see Sac State generating enough offense to win. One caveat, if this turns out to be a shootout like last week’s NAU-EWU game and Thomson is out, it is possible NAU could pull it out at home. But NAU has almost no defense – giving up a conference worst 41 points a game. Sac state will still only have 6 DI one wins if they win this game. Could be interesting. If we are wishing, we would like to see Sac State lose since NAU is out of the race already and knocking back Sac State opens up better seeding options for the Cats. But while we are wishing, let’s ask for new Eastside bleachers for next year!
 Desired Outcome: NAU victory in high scoring affair
 Likely Outcome: Sac State

Weber vs UND
o This is probably the most consequential game. A UND upset of Weber at home would be bad for the conference and for the Cats. UND would climb up in the polls and almost certainly be an at-large team stealing a spot from the Big Sky or Missouri Valley. Plus, Weber’s resume would be damaged and the seeding process would be disrupted. UND is not out of the playoffs with a loss but they are on the edge of the bubble assuming they beat SUU and UNC at home. UND is not good on the road – don’t see them beating Weber.
 Desired Outcome: Weber big Victory
 Likely Outcome: Weber

UCD vs PSU
o This game could be interesting. Both teams look pedestrian this year. Davis been a huge disappointment for reasons no one seems to explain. They have not beat a Big Sky team with a winning record and must win out to even be considered as a bubble team. They have a tough road ahead with PSU, MSU and Sac on the schedule. Could PSU pull out the game? Might. Here is my psychology – while a PSU win would knock Davis out of the playoff bubble, I prefer Davis win because a loss will tick them off and push them to win the following week against MSU. A win might make them complacent and think they are back in the groove. Any substance to my psychology? Of course not but I think it, so it is.
 Desired Outcome: UC Davis win
 Likely Outcome: Toss up

EWU vs ISU
o Only reason to mention this game is Eastern’s slim chances of getting in on the bubble. ISU has been an enigma – beating UND 55-20 then losing to SUU 59-24. They have three losses in a row and are moving to the bottom of the standings. I would like them to beat EWU but hard to see ISU pulling this game out even though playing at home. I see Eastern keeping their slim playoff hopes alive (Very Slim.)
 Desired Outcome: ISU shows up.
 Likely Outcome: EWU runs away with the game.

So now we look at the other conferences. Remember, I am looking at what is best for the Cats with limited research. I know the CAA and Southland are jumbled and no one has any idea how it will shake out. But that is no reason not to speculate what might happen to help out the Cats.

CAA
• 7 team’s playoff eligible should drop to 5 after this weekend; at least based on having at least an 8-4 record to get in. Only one seeded team at this point (JMU). What I am doing to look at these games it to pick 3 teams I think have the best chance for a playoff spot and pick the games accordingly. What we want in the CAA is a continual self-immolation to knock down the teams with at 8 wins.

• JMU vs UNH – Must win for UNH. But JMU is the better team and they need to win out to keep the number two seed. I think the committee was sniffing glue to move UNH from #23 to the 10 spot in Wednesday’s playoff prediction. Their schedule is murderous with JMU, Albany and Maine. They might only 1 of the three. Plus, UNH only plays 11 games; No FBS game and played two weak teams and lost at the start of the season. Sagarin has UNH at 138, only the 18th best FCS team. Guess we will find out who knows more come Saturday
o Desired/Predicted Outcome: JMU

• Richmond at Villanova – Nova snaps out of their funk and show who they are. Richmond is over reaching. A loss knocks them out of the hunt
o Desired/Predicted Outcome – Nova

• Albany at Delaware – Another game with an over achiever (Albany) vs an under-achiever (Del). Delaware nearly knocks off Pitt and then proceeds to lose the next 3 out of 4. But the Great Danes run ends here or next Saturday. Don’t really know if Albany can stay in third place but best if they don’t. Delaware at home wins a squeaker.
o Desired Outcome – Delaware
o Predicted Outcome – Delaware

• Towson at Stony Brook – Not sure who I want here. Both are 5-4 and both in the race. I would say let’s go with Stony Brook since they are not ranked and they have the tougher last two games so better chance of losing
o Desired/Predicted Outcome – Stony Brook

• Elon vs Maine – Both out of contention with 5 losses. Can only play spoilers but not against each other.


MVFC
• 6 teams still in the hunt.
o 2 locks on seeds (NDSU and SDSU). However, lets point out SDSU has Ill. State; UNI and
o 2 Likely in – UNI and Ill State
o 2 on the bubble – SIU and Youngstown State.

• UNI vs Indiana State
o UNI is rolling. 3 wins in a row. Only one difficult game left against SDSU. Likely will be 8-4. We DON’T want UNI in the playoffs because they are really tough. But looks they will easily make it. They are a team that even at 7-5 could get in. Lots of sites have UNI with a seeded playoff position. Maybe they upset SDSU in two weeks but let’s not get ahead
 Desired Outcome: Indiana State
 Predicted Outcome: UNI

• Illinois State vs South Dakota State
o This could be a defining moment for Ill State. Lose this game and they are 6-4 with two consecutive losses and at least one difficult game on the slate. They could miss the playoffs with an end of season swoon.
 Desired/Predicted Outcome: SDSU wins big

• Southern Ill. Vs Missouri State
o SIU is a riser in the MVFC. Few predicted they would be in the hunt this late. They beat FBS Umass; beat OVC UT Martin and are 5-4. They are on the bubble. They will likely win the next two and lose to NDSU and be 7-5 with 7 D1 wins. Cats are served best by SIU AND YSU dropping out of the bubble so MVFC only gets 3 at-large bids. SIU stays in the hunt this week.
 Desired Outcome: MOST
 Predicted Outcome: SIU

• Youngstown vs South Dakota
o YSU came out of the gates strong winning 4 in a row. Since then they have lost 4 out of 5. However, they have and easy road to 7 wins all DI (although their first four wins against weaker competition in NEC, MEAC). They could be tripped by USD this week. Given YSU has to play Ill. State at the end of the season, they need this game. Would help us out by losing to USD, effectively knocking them out of the playoffs assuming they will lose at Ill. State in the last game of the year.
 Desired Outcome: USD
 Predicted Outcome: Toss up

OVC
• 6 teams still in the hunt. However, weak schedules mean likely only one at-large team will get in. Possible they get two. Not desirable for Big Sky. Still anyone’s bet who comes out on top. Cats want SEMO to be #1 in the league so our resume looks better to the committee. Possible as SEMO has easiest schedule of the top 3 teams.

• UT Martin vs Austin Peay
o Tied at the top of the OVC. Someone has to loss. I think it is a toss-up game – both have same conference and overall records. I think best if UT Martin wins. Because an Austin Peay/SEMO tie for the top gives the auto bid to Austin Peay due to win over SEMO.
 Desired /Predicted Outcome: UT Martin

• SEMO vs. Eastern Kentucky
o SEMO should be able to win this game. But Eastern Kentucky is 5-4 and has always been in the top half of the OVC. Cat fans should be cheering for SEMO the rest of the year. SEMO win knocks Eastern Kentucky out of the picture.
 Desired/Predicted Outcome: SEMO

• Jacksonville State vs. Tennessee Tech
o Perennial power JSU is suffering this year. After walloping Eastern Washington and North Alabama, JSU has been up and down. They have six wins already and could still get to 8 wins without a heavy lift. This puts three teams in the playoff mix at a minimum. Hard to say if OVC gets 3 in the playoffs but if they do, not great for a MFVC or Big Sky bubble team
 Desired Outcome: Tenn Tech
 Predicted Outcome: JSU

Southern

• 3 teams with 4 or less losses. Furman and Wofford have the inside track but they both have 3 losses. Poor SOS among other teams will likely result in one at-large team.
• Furman vs VMI – We would love to see VMI pull an upset but not likely
o Desired: VMI
o Predicted: Furman

• Wofford vs Mercer – Wofford only plays 11 games so they need two of the next three to even reach 7 games. Huge disadvantage to Wofford as they play Citadel and Furman. Mercer is not looking bad
o Desired: Mercer
o Predicted: Wofford

Southland

• 7 teams with 4 or fewer losses and two more with 5 losses. Other than Central Arkansas, no separation between the other 6 teams. Looks like they both are strong. Most brackets have both teams in. Nearly impossible to figure out. And the committee has some sort of soft spot for the Southland letting Lamar and UIW in the playoffs last year with only 6 DI wins passing over Indiana State, Monmouth, Montana, Ill. State and Eastern Kentucky. Made no sense. Here are Saturdays winners and losers – best guess
• Cent Ark vs SELA – A loss cripples SELA. CA wins
• Nicholls vs Houston Baptist – Nicholls rolls
• Sam Houston vs Abilene Christian – Best if AC pulls an upset as they have tough schedule. AC winner
• UIW vs SFA – Need SFA to win one for the Alamo but fat chance. UIW wins.

Here is my seeding projection – hmmm, why isn’t’ New Hampshire in there? I must have missed their SOS and Sagarin rankings. Somehow.



Assuming the Cats win, we will total up our “desired victories” victories by conference at the end of the weekend.



Catprint
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am

coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by CelticCat » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:09 am

Catprint wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am
coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.
I agree SEMO could get in over a 7-4 power conference team, but if the committee is choosing literally between MSU and SEMO, it would be hard to put SEMO ahead of us since we crushed them.


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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by coochorama42 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:29 am

@CelticCat Thank you. That was exactly my point!



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by iaafan » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:57 am

SEMO has really been building a good case and is good position to win out and possibly get the OVC auto bid. If Tenn-Martin beats Austin Peay tomorrow, SEMO controls it’s own destiny.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by coochorama42 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:15 am

@Catprint, great write-up (again!). I'm really very, very interested in that Austin Peay/UT Martin match-up. I see that as a very important game for the Cats playoff chances if we lose at Davis. In some ways, I'd rather Austin Peay be the conference champ because of the head-to-head matchup between SEMO and MSU, but I don't trust UT Martin to win out even if they win this game. If the OVC only gets their one automatic bid, it's much better for us. That being said, I'm starting to believe the SoCon is getting 2 (or 3) bids. I think that Citadel can make it interesting with an 8-4 record and a win at Georgia Tech. If Wofford beats Furman and loses to the Citadel, it might be trouble.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by CelticCat » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:30 am

@Catprint , hope you don't mind but I shared a direct link to your above post on the R&R Cat Cast Twitter (crediting you of course), I thought any Bobcat, Big Sky, of FCS fans following us might be interested! Great stuff.


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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Htowngriz » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:52 am

Catprint wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am
coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.
No way an 8-4 UM or MSU gets left out. They bring in way too much money.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Cledus » Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:20 pm

Htowngriz wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:52 am
Catprint wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am
coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.
No way an 8-4 UM or MSU gets left out. They bring in way too much money.
Welp, I decided to look up exactly how much the NCAA brings in. In 2017, the most recent year data was available, the NCAA reported revenue of $1.1 billion. If we're generous and say MSU and um each bring in $1 million, here's what a chart to scale would look like:
Image

I don't know how the NCAA would go on without us. All the suits in Indianapolis are gathered in front of their tv's not having shaved or showered for days on end praying for MSU and um to get in the tournament like a scene from a 70's disaster flick. :lol: :lol:



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Sat Nov 09, 2019 1:09 pm

CelticCat wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:09 am
Catprint wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am
coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.
I agree SEMO could get in over a 7-4 power conference team, but if the committee is choosing literally between MSU and SEMO, it would be hard to put SEMO ahead of us since we crushed them.
My bad. The hypothetical over the actual got me giving the wrong example
1) This year - If SEMO is 8-4 and NOT the OVC auto bid and MSU is 7-5, and the committee is down to the last one or two at-large spots, MSU most likley gets the bid based on SOS and head-to-head. I agree.
2) Overall, I was simply addressing past history and stating that an 8-4 OVC team is NOT automatically going to be passed up for a spot to 7-5 (7-4 FCS) MVFC or Big Sky team. I listened to a Podcast this week where the UM AD who is on the playoff committee talked about the process and it was clear there is lots of discretion and things like who is playing better at the end of the season; quality of opponents; type of wins; etc. all played into the decision process. It was not simply statistical.
3) My main point that two SOuthland teams with 6 D1 wins were selected over an MVFC with 7 wins and 6 D1 wins and a 5 game win streak. The UM AD said a DII win is NOT automatically thrown out but it is considered. PLus last year showed that the 7 D1 wins is not hard and fast. But i guess we all knew that.



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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Sat Nov 09, 2019 1:16 pm

Htowngriz wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:52 am
Catprint wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:34 am
coochorama42 wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 2:32 pm
but would an 8-2 FCS SEMO squad really make the playoffs ahead of a 7-4 MSU squad??
Last year the committee took an 8-2 FCS SEMO over a 7-4 MVFC team and who went on to win a first round game against a "Power 3 Conf opponent" in Stony Brook. I think it highly possible that OVC gets 2 at-large teams (with 9-3 or 8-3 FCS records) in the playoffs and that MIGHT preclude a 7-4 MSU or UM from getting in. It has happened before. Of course, the third OVC team could be knocking out a Southland at-large team as well. What is in MSU's favor is 3 out of our 4 losses would be against ranked opponents.
No way an 8-4 UM or MSU gets left out. They bring in way too much money.
To be clear, I have an 8-4 MSU or UM in the playoffs this year 100% guaranteed. It is only a 7-5 (7-4 FCS) MSU or UM team that is on the bubble. However, none of that has to do with money. The money part is only if they are SELECTED, then they almost always will get a first round game (if not seeded) due to the quality of their hosting bid.



Catprint
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:32 am

Week 12

Continuing my plan of a shorter post immediately and the predictor post later in the week.

Two weeks of outstanding defense. Two weeks of mix it up; unpredictable plays. Two games with the same results. Good job Cats. Let’s look at a few key elements of the game.

Defense
• First string defense gave up only 165 yards of offense through 3 quarters! Unheard of!
• No points given up until 7 minutes left in the game (and then mostly by 2nd string).
• Turnover streak kept alive.
• Gave up 44 yards rushing.

I believe the pass defense is much better than at the start of the year and better than I have given them credit for. In the last three games against passing offenses, the defense has shut down three throwing quarterbacks.

Offense
• 450 yards of rushing. 3rd most in school history
• 11 different rushers.
• 3 out 4 in fourth down conversions (only miss e with 2 minutes remaining.)
• Rovig 10 for 15 passing which is respectable given the run game.
• Over 560 yards of total offense.
• No 2nd half letdown.

This gives us the magic 7 wins but I don’t consider it very magical this year due to the 12 game schedule and the plethora of teams still in the hunt for 7 wins (see end of the post whether 7 is even the number). Still, 7-3 is good.

Well, one heck of a Big Sky slate last weekend! I was watching the Cats Basketball team play at the fieldhouse and checking my phone at every time out! I was conflicted who to cheer for. I decided I wanted Weber over UND because of the hope UND drops out of the bubble. But it looked like Weber would lose after a late interception. But then they pulled it out with a late field goal and some luck. The NAU-Sac State game was something else! Can’t believe what NAU had to do in order to lose that game after stopping Sac State on downs and leading 34-24 with 3 and half minutes left in the game and needing only ONE first down!
• Run three consecutive conservative run plays
• Get a personal foul penalty
• Punt the ball 36 yards
• Give up a 44-yard punt return
• Give up a touchdown in 2 passes
• Lose the onside kick (by having it kicked over the head of the hands team)
• Give up another touchdown in 5 plays
Guess that’s why they play 60 minutes. Can’t believe how lucky (is it really luck?) Sac State and Weber State were this weekend. I do think it is what makes Good Teams Great. They know how to win those close games.

Said I would look at how our “Desired Outcome” predictions came out last week. In the Sky, not much luck. Only 2 of the 5 went in a way I thought was best for Cats. I was hoping Sac State lost as the two consecutive losses would have pushed them behind UM and MSU in the polls and jeopardized a seed. I actually wanted Weber to win to keep a BSC team in the top 3 or 4 spot for a great seed. UC Davis beat PSU keeping their slim playoff hopes alive.

In the other conferences, we did slightly better with an 8 of the 17 games going in the direction that helps the Cats.

The Big Pluses for the Cats
• South Dakota beat Youngstown State knocking YSU out of the playoff bubble.
• SEMO came back and won against EKU. This keeps SEMO in the hunt for auto-bid.
• Central Arkansas lost badly and will drop below the Cats in the polls and drop out of the seeding conversation.

Big Negatives
• Illinois State beat South Dakota State messing up the seeding for everyone.
• UNI beat Indiana State raising their chances of locking up a seed.

Conference by conference overview.



CAA
• JMU vs UNH: What was the committee thinking? UNH is the 10th best team in the country? I didn’t think so and certainly don’t now. They were totally destroyed by JMU 54-16. You can’t be the 10th best team and lose by nearly 40 points. I am sorry. UNH has a tough schedule in their last two games (Albany and Maine) and could easily miss the playoffs entirely.
• Richmond at Villanova: Nova came back in the fourth quarter and has likely snuffed out Richmond’s playoff hopes (They still have to play JMU and are 5-5 now). In my mind, this reduces CAA to 4 bubble teams (Nova, UNH, Albany and Towson).
• Albany at Delaware – I thought Delaware would step up for this game. Not! So Albany is in second place with a real chance for a playoff spot. I think they have third best chance after JMU and Nova. Albany still has a tough schedule with UNH and Stony Brook.
• Towson at Stony Brook: Even though we wanted Stony Brook, Towson handled SB easily. Towson is clearly in the hunt for a second or third CAA at-large spot.
• Elon vs Maine: With a victory, Maine kept its technical playoff hopes alive but it would take a set of numerical miracles.
• Preliminary # of at-large spots: 2 or 3.

OVC – Not the best results this week. Decidedly mixed bag. Still four teams in OVC with 4 or fewer losses. However, the most they will get in the playoffs is three. We only want two in from the OVC.
• SEMO vs Eastern Kentucky: SEMO came back and took care of business. We want SEMO to get the auto bid in the OVC due to the Cats crushing of SEMO earlier in the year. They are still in the hunt but hurt by Austin Peay’s win.
• Austin Peay vs UT Martin: Didn’t go our way. UT Martin will be on life support due to weak schedule. They finish the season against Kentucky so only have one more FCS game they can win.
• Jacksonville State vs Tenn Tech: Big deal for Cats fans. Essentially eliminates JSU from the bubble due to SOS. Tenn. Tech is 6-4 and could be 8-4 but they have a DII win so only 7-4 FCS is best they can be and that is not going to get them in. No playoff prediction site even has Tenn. Tech on the bubble or on the edge. The OVC is just too weak.
• Preliminary # of at large: 1

MVFC – The Missouri Valley continues to be the bane of the Big Sky. Not much happened for good this weekend.
• UNI vs Indiana State: UNI keeps rolling. We can argue they don’t have any signature wins but their SOS is huge and UNI is long-term darling of the committee.
• Illinois State vs South Dakota State: No one saw this coming. Is SDSU in trouble with their starting QB injured? They still have to play UNI and South Dakota. Could they work themselves out of the playoffs? Doesn’t seem possible but losing a seed is entirely possible if SDSU loses to UNI.
• Southern Ill. Vs Missouri State: The Salukis kept in the hunt, much to our chagrin. They will be the 4th at-large bid from the MVFC. They still have to play NDSU so they will likely be 7-5. They will be on the bubble for sure.
• Youngstown vs South Dakota: This game went the Cats way with YSU effectively eliminated from the bubble – at least in my mind.
• Preliminary # of at large: 3 or 4

Southern
• VMI vs Furman: Furman crushed VMI and set up next week’s matchup. Furman already has 7 DI wins. But if they lose to Wofford their last game is an NAIA team so they would end up 7-2 FCS. I suppose this will get them in the playoffs since they played two FBS games and have their 7 wins.
• Mercer vs Wofford: Wofford won easily. Win next week and they get in. Lose and the Citadel game is a play-in for the bubble.
• Preliminary # of at-large: 1 or 2

Southland – The Southland continues to beat each other up. The best we can hope for is the trend to continue and keep Southland at one at-large bid. Still 5 teams in the hunt.
• Central Ark vs SELA: SELA won big and this drops UCA from any seeding discussion. I don’t think winning out changes that conversation. This is good for Big Sky and Cats because it makes it highly likely there will be 3 seeds available for the Big Sky.
• SFA vs Incarnate Word: SFA pulls the upset and knocks UIW from the playoff picture.
• Nicholls State vs Houston Baptist: No surprise here.
• Sam Houston vs Abilene Christian: Sam Houston keep their bubble hopes alive
• Preliminary # of at-large – 1 or 2

Big South – Didn’t talk about the Big South last week but need to have them in the conversation. It seems highly likely the Big South gets an at-large spot. Hard to imagine a 10-2 record will keep Kennesaw State out of the playoffs if Monmouth wins out.
• Preliminary # of at-large – 1

Total at-large spots all conferences but Big Sky: minimum: 9; maximum: 13.
This leaves 1 to 5 spots for the Big Sky (including UND). Most likely it will be 3 or 4 spots. We will examine the possibilities in installment two later this week.

In summary, all the top Big Sky teams won (Weber, Sac, UM, MSU, EWU, and UC Davis) so no change in the positioning for playoffs. Believe it or not, EWU and Davis both have a chance to get back into the bubble conversation with some options we will discuss next week.

But before I finish this post, I came across the NCAA FCS rules with regard to playoff selections after I listened to the UM AD in a podcast earlier this week. He is on the playoff committee and shared some insights about the process. Here are some portions of the FCS rules book as it applies to playoff selections.

1. The committee shall select the best teams available on a national at-large basis to complete the bracket. Per NCAA Bylaw 31, the basic criteria used in the selection of at-large participants are (1) won-lost record,
(2) strength of schedule, and (3) eligibility and availability of student-athletes for the NCAA championship;
2. There is no limit to the number of teams the committee may select from one conference
3. The won-lost record of a team will be scrutinized to determine a team’s strength of schedule; however, fewer than six Division I wins may place a team in jeopardy of not being selected;
4. The committee may give more consideration to those teams that have played all Division I opponents;
5. If a committee member’s institution is under consideration, that committee member will not be allowed in the room during discussions involving his/her team and may not vote for his/her team during the voting process. Similarly, a committee member from a conference office may not be present during discussions, nor vote for any team from his/her conference……


The NCAA Division I Football Championship Committee will use the NCAA Simple Rating System (NCAA SRS) as a tool for evaluating teams for selection into the 24-team championship.
The NCAA SRS is a ranking system used to gauge team quality. Within the NCAA SRS, the rating of a team will be calculated largely by two components: a strength-of-schedule measure (SOS) and a win-loss differential (WL)…….
An additional bonus/penalty of +/- 0.1 is added/deducted for games that FCS teams play against FBS/non-Division I opponents. For instance, a home FCS win against a Division II opponent counts only as +0.65 points (0.75 for a home win - 0.1 penalty for playing a Division II opponent)……..
Games against Division III or non-NCAA opponents are not factored into any team’s NCAA SRS rating.
The time of the season in which a game is played (early-season versus late-season games) is also not factored into a team’s NCAA SRS rating……..
The NCAA SRS will not “force select” any teams into the championship; rather, it is one of several resources that the Division I Football Championship Committee will have at its disposal when debating the merits of teams under consideration for championship selection.



MY BRIEF OBSERVATIONS
1) It is NOT 7 D1 wins to qualify but 6 D1 wins that is the threshold. Explains the number of 6 win teams that have gotten a spot over the last few years. Not sure why we all tout 7 D1 wins as the requirement.
2) DIII and NAIA games don’t count in any fashion in the rankings BUT DII games do count just less than D1 games.
3) The SRS rating system is only the initial guideline. The committee has “several” resources at its disposal. More about this later this week. Stay Tuned

Go Cats!



ilovethecats
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by ilovethecats » Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:38 am

Incredible stuff



bobcatfan123
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by bobcatfan123 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:55 am

Thank you for putting all that together Catprint. I know how busy life is and appreciate you taking the time to do that. In thinking about these next few weeks should we be rooting for UM to beat Weber. I know it's one week at a time and we have nothing to do with any sort of outcome. . . but can't help but speculate how everything will play out. It would be nice to beat UM when they are a #3 ranked team as opposed to #10 (or whatever ranking the loss would put them at). It is the time of year when your ranking actually does matter. If we beat a highly ranked griz team we can still get seed and a few home games.

Have mixed emotions as I have a really hard time rooting for the griz in any sort of situation. . . even if it could benefit the cats.



thefrank1
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by thefrank1 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:38 pm

Now that's playing to win and I like it!


While registering my vehicles the assessor stated "I have had both Cat and Griz students and alums work for me and the Griz end up working under the direction of the Cats."

Catprint
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by Catprint » Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:12 pm

bobcatfan123 wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:55 am
Thank you for putting all that together Catprint. I know how busy life is and appreciate you taking the time to do that. In thinking about these next few weeks should we be rooting for UM to beat Weber. I know it's one week at a time and we have nothing to do with any sort of outcome. . . but can't help but speculate how everything will play out. It would be nice to beat UM when they are a #3 ranked team as opposed to #10 (or whatever ranking the loss would put them at). It is the time of year when your ranking actually does matter. If we beat a highly ranked griz team we can still get seed and a few home games.

Have mixed emotions as I have a really hard time rooting for the griz in any sort of situation. . . even if it could benefit the cats.
There are definitely four sides to this coin! I will be looking at it in depth later in the week but here is short version

1) UM beats Weber; Cats beat UCD
a. This moves UM to #3 or #4. When we beat them, it would insure we get a seed. Griz could still get one.
b. However, it will drop the BSC from any team getting #2 seed so hurts the conference in getting to Frisco and it likely gives the Griz a seed regardless of Cat/Griz as I don’t think they will drop from #3 to #9 or further.

2) UM beats Weber; Cats lose to UCD
a. UM moves to #3/#4; Cats drop to 15 or even lower. Now we have to win to get in the playoffs.
b. Assuming a Bobcat win, Griz may still get a seed. But now no team gets a #2 or #3 seed.

3) UM loses to Weber; Cats wins at UCD.
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing UM will likely be for a seed – Only the winner gets the bye. Both teams get a playoff spot.

4) UM loses to Weber; Cats lose at UCD
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing for their playoff spot. Griz don't get a seed with Cat/Griz loss.

Unfortunately, the Griz play before the Bobcat games starts at 5:00 PM so their game is over before ours begin. If Weber and Sac had gone down last weekend (both eeked out last minute victories), I would definitely be cheering for the Griz as it allows a four-way tie for first. As it stands, I think we have to count on the Cats winning both games so cheering for the Griz against Weber gives us a much higher chance of getting a bye and a seed when we beat the Griz. I can cheer for the Griz when it helps the Cats – apparently some fans can’t and that makes no sense. Our dislike for the Griz has to end when their victory helps the Bobcats!



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catatac
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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by catatac » Mon Nov 11, 2019 10:07 am

Catprint wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:12 pm
bobcatfan123 wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:55 am
Thank you for putting all that together Catprint. I know how busy life is and appreciate you taking the time to do that. In thinking about these next few weeks should we be rooting for UM to beat Weber. I know it's one week at a time and we have nothing to do with any sort of outcome. . . but can't help but speculate how everything will play out. It would be nice to beat UM when they are a #3 ranked team as opposed to #10 (or whatever ranking the loss would put them at). It is the time of year when your ranking actually does matter. If we beat a highly ranked griz team we can still get seed and a few home games.

Have mixed emotions as I have a really hard time rooting for the griz in any sort of situation. . . even if it could benefit the cats.
There are definitely four sides to this coin! I will be looking at it in depth later in the week but here is short version

1) UM beats Weber; Cats beat UCD
a. This moves UM to #3 or #4. When we beat them, it would insure we get a seed. Griz could still get one.
b. However, it will drop the BSC from any team getting #2 seed so hurts the conference in getting to Frisco and it likely gives the Griz a seed regardless of Cat/Griz as I don’t think they will drop from #3 to #9 or further.

2) UM beats Weber; Cats lose to UCD
a. UM moves to #3/#4; Cats drop to 15 or even lower. Now we have to win to get in the playoffs.
b. Assuming a Bobcat win, Griz may still get a seed. But now no team gets a #2 or #3 seed.

3) UM loses to Weber; Cats wins at UCD.
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing UM will likely be for a seed – Only the winner gets the bye. Both teams get a playoff spot.

4) UM loses to Weber; Cats lose at UCD
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing for their playoff spot. Griz don't get a seed with Cat/Griz loss.

Unfortunately, the Griz play before the Bobcat games starts at 5:00 PM so their game is over before ours begin. If Weber and Sac had gone down last weekend (both eeked out last minute victories), I would definitely be cheering for the Griz as it allows a four-way tie for first. As it stands, I think we have to count on the Cats winning both games so cheering for the Griz against Weber gives us a much higher chance of getting a bye and a seed when we beat the Griz. I can cheer for the Griz when it helps the Cats – apparently some fans can’t and that makes no sense. Our dislike for the Griz has to end when their victory helps the Bobcats!
I thought we were pretty much a lock for a seed as long as we win the next two regardless of of the Weber\UM game? Maybe not.


Great time to be a BOBCAT!

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Re: Path to the Playoffs - 2019 Edition

Post by 91catAlum » Mon Nov 11, 2019 10:16 am

Catprint wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:12 pm
bobcatfan123 wrote:
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:55 am
Thank you for putting all that together Catprint. I know how busy life is and appreciate you taking the time to do that. In thinking about these next few weeks should we be rooting for UM to beat Weber. I know it's one week at a time and we have nothing to do with any sort of outcome. . . but can't help but speculate how everything will play out. It would be nice to beat UM when they are a #3 ranked team as opposed to #10 (or whatever ranking the loss would put them at). It is the time of year when your ranking actually does matter. If we beat a highly ranked griz team we can still get seed and a few home games.

Have mixed emotions as I have a really hard time rooting for the griz in any sort of situation. . . even if it could benefit the cats.
There are definitely four sides to this coin! I will be looking at it in depth later in the week but here is short version

1) UM beats Weber; Cats beat UCD
a. This moves UM to #3 or #4. When we beat them, it would insure we get a seed. Griz could still get one.
b. However, it will drop the BSC from any team getting #2 seed so hurts the conference in getting to Frisco and it likely gives the Griz a seed regardless of Cat/Griz as I don’t think they will drop from #3 to #9 or further.

2) UM beats Weber; Cats lose to UCD
a. UM moves to #3/#4; Cats drop to 15 or even lower. Now we have to win to get in the playoffs.
b. Assuming a Bobcat win, Griz may still get a seed. But now no team gets a #2 or #3 seed.

3) UM loses to Weber; Cats wins at UCD.
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing UM will likely be for a seed – Only the winner gets the bye. Both teams get a playoff spot.

4) UM loses to Weber; Cats lose at UCD
a. Weber is lock for #2/#3 seed. Good for big sky.
b. Cats playing for their playoff spot. Griz don't get a seed with Cat/Griz loss.

Unfortunately, the Griz play before the Bobcat games starts at 5:00 PM so their game is over before ours begin. If Weber and Sac had gone down last weekend (both eeked out last minute victories), I would definitely be cheering for the Griz as it allows a four-way tie for first. As it stands, I think we have to count on the Cats winning both games so cheering for the Griz against Weber gives us a much higher chance of getting a bye and a seed when we beat the Griz. I can cheer for the Griz when it helps the Cats – apparently some fans can’t and that makes no sense. Our dislike for the Griz has to end when their victory helps the Bobcats!
I don't understand the logic of how it helps the Cats if the griz win.

If the Cats win out, they will get a seed regardless of what happens in the Weber/um game.
But even if the Cats win out, we will not get a 2 or 3 seed with a 9-3 record. We'll be somewhere between 5-8 seed regardless of the griz Weber outcome.
And anybody that's in that 5-8 range will travel in the quarters, assuming the seeds hold at home.

So I don't think it really matters.


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