Is RPI a broken model?

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Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 10:45 am

So, here we are 2 games away from our first 20-win season in forever, and as we continue to play against teams that we should beat in the WCC we are doing well. Yet, though we win our RPI goes down. Prior to the recent win it was at #108. Meanwhile, San Diego State (whose only loss to a common opponent of ours was SMC...a 67-64 loss) is ranked 60 spots ahead of us at #48. I know I love our team, and I drink the spiked Kool Aid, but, come on?!!! They are a top 64 RPI team, and we aren't??

There are things about the RPI that just don't make much sense. Why is there so much emphasis on the record of the opponents of your opponents? That's about 6 degrees too far in my opinion. It might make more sense to somehow consider the the overall record or RPI of a conference so that the best conferences like the ACC and Big East get their dues, while the highest RPI mid-majors like the WCC also receive just a bit more respect IMO.

What do you think?

Here's a link to San Diego state:

http://realtimerpi.com/rpi_308_Men.html

So, basically, the RPI states that they lose to better teams than we do. Oh brother.
---------------------------------------------

I know our early season tourney next year with good teams like Butler there will help to take care of this a bit as long as we do pretty well... It's just tough feeling a bit disrespected this year at least as far as the RPI goes. I do admit we are getting nice media coverage all things considered...

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by mattywizz on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:08 pm

Well, they did beat Northern Colorado in Greeley. Unfortunately a common opponent that we lost to.

It looks like they played teams with higher RPIs than the Pilots played, which makes their RPI higher. Could you file that under a self fulfilling prophecy? Or maybe a circular argument?

I understand what you mean though. Maybe they need to do what the BCS does and combine 6 computer models. Because we all know the BCS always works so well.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:22 pm

I think th RPI is doing what it's supposed to do here. When we play the bottom of our conference (twice) we are playing teams around 200 RPI or lower. Your RPI doesn't go up when you play those teams even if you win.

LMU is nearly the worst team in D1 right now, and our RPI went DOWN with the win.

It's a fact of life. To get our RPI up, we needed to beat PSU, NAU, Cal and maybe the Zags.



And those wins on the road count as 1.6 wins, where a home win counts as .4 wins.
And the Eastern Washington loss counts as 1.6 losses to a not very good team.

Now we know what to shoot for.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by mattywizz on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:46 pm

I just looked around the RPI site a little more and came up with an answer to your question.

YES the RPI is a broken model.

reasoning, the Big 10 is ranked higher than the Big East

I'm sure that has something to do with the fact that there are 75 teams in the Big East, but seriously, can you make an argument that the Big 10 is better than the Big East?

Also, I really don't like strength of schedule. For every game you win, you actually hurt your strength of schedule. So should teams "throw" games so that their opponents get more wins?

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 1:13 pm

mattywizz wrote:

Also, I really don't like strength of schedule. For every game you win, you actually hurt your strength of schedule. So should teams "throw" games so that their opponents get more wins?

Not exactly. Your win against somebody is not computed in their element 2 of your RPI, (Record of opponents) nor is is their loss computed in your element 3 (record of opponents of opponents.

The win is only counted in the first element.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 1:42 pm

mattywizz wrote: Because we all know the BCS always works so well.

HAHA. Seriously. Yeah, I guess I should just thank God for the tourney and know that our time will eventually come.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 1:51 pm

Purplegeezer wrote:I think th RPI is doing what it's supposed to do here. When we play the bottom of our It's a fact of life. To get our RPI up, we needed to beat PSU, NAU, Cal and maybe the Zags.

I can understand that, and at the same time I think that there are many over-rated teams within the RPI right now. SMC without Mills, for example, is not the same team, and does not deserve to be 50-some places ahead of us. San Diego State does not deserve to be ahead of us because they've lost to better teams. Our quality win over UW keeps looking better and better. I guess there can never be a perfect system though. Neutral

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Stonehouse on Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:00 pm

I hear you all on the RPI stuff... any time the formula is as simple as it is with the basketball RPI it's bound to cause problems. I mean, who came up with those arbitrary percentages anyway?

But... from what everyone says, they don't even really use the RPI that much anyway when selecting the March Madness field... it's one of the tools they use and maybe a useful barometer, but it's not the be-all and end-all like the BCS rankings are.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:04 pm

[quote="athleticjames"]
Purplegeezer wrote:
I can understand that, and at the same time I think that there are many over-rated teams within the RPI right now. SMC without Mills, for example, is not the same team, and does not deserve to be 50-some places ahead of us. San Diego State does not deserve to be ahead of us because they've lost to better teams. Our quality win over UW keeps looking better and better. I guess there can never be a perfect system though. Neutral

One of the things the selection committee looks at is the last 10 games. That's separate from the RPI, though. If SMC falters any more, it will hurt them bad, especially considering the teams they will play. Either way, the credit they built up earlier in the season means that their fate isn't really linked to ours, tournament-wise. Our non-conference performancedictated what neighborhood of the RPI we are in.


Yes, our quality win against UW is looking better, but our bad loss against EWU is looking worse and worse.

Again, the win counts as .4 wins because it was at home, and the loss counts as 1.6 loses for the same reason, so the two games balance out as a net loss for us.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:08 pm

Stonehouse wrote:I hear you all on the RPI stuff... any time the formula is as simple as it is with the basketball RPI it's bound to cause problems. I mean, who came up with those arbitrary percentages anyway?

But... from what everyone says, they don't even really use the RPI that much anyway when selecting the March Madness field... it's one of the tools they use and maybe a useful barometer, but it's not the be-all and end-all like the BCS rankings are.

Well, the RPI home- away skewing is based on the historical home court advantage. It pretty closely mirrors what the WCC has done with home and home the last few years.

And you are right, Stoney. the Basketball RPI isn't as important as it is in, for instance, soccer. The committee is instructed to look at other things.

They'd have to come up with a pretty creative reason to bump us 60 points or so to get us into the at large bid region.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:39 pm

EWU is a much better team than people think. Don't forget that Rodney Stuckey of the Pistons was drafted from that school just about 1-2 seasons ago. EWU often plays Gonzaga extremely close, and that is thought of as a pretty competitive rivalry eventhough Gonzaga almost always wins. I don't consider that to be our worst loss.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 2:48 pm

If we had faced EWU, a season or two earlier here is the player we would have had to face:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7g7jq8h9_IU

Pardon the French in this video. Even without Rodney, a player of that calibur has to be good for the development of a program...

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:05 pm

athleticjames wrote:EWU is a much better team than people think. Don't forget that Rodney Stuckey of the Pistons was drafted from that school just about 1-2 seasons ago. EWU often plays Gonzaga extremely close, and that is thought of as a pretty competitive rivalry eventhough Gonzaga almost always wins. I don't consider that to be our worst loss.


Well, the RPI only measures this year. It doesn't give a hoot about tradition. EWU doesn't have anyone remotely like Rodney Stuckey now. As it happens, we DID face him two years ago in the Chiles Center. he got 18 points, 8 assists, and seven rebounds. Kevin Fields has 14 for us. We lost by 21.

This year, EWU's RPI is now 227, so it was our second worst loss. That's worse in the RPI than losing to NAU (286) away. That's just the way the RPI works, there is no anomaly there. teams vying for the championship tournament aren't supposed to lose to teams in the bottom third or bottom fifth, especially at home.
Neither situation can be called out of kilter with what the basketball RPI is supposed to do - encourage a team to play tough games away, as well as easy games at home. It ended the era when mid majors played the BCS school only at BCS venues. For that alone, I'm happy for the RPI.


We got the other end of that deal by losing to St Mary's, Cal, and the Zags. Even though we lost, our RPI's went up.

And we were penalized exactly the same for losing away to St. Mary's as we were rewarded for beating them at home.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by caniparolimt on Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:09 pm

Guys, I have been following the pilots for 20 years. I have to say that the reason that our RPI is so low is because we played a weak schedule overall. We had 9 non conference games against traditionally weaker conferences. We lost all three games to the Big Sky conf. I can count the number of tourny wins that conf. has without running out of fingers. As far as the conf. sched. we have spent the better part of the last 20 years lowering RPI for the conf. stronger teams, so we have no room to complain. Karma is a #)$(%.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:38 pm

True, EWU is much worse now than they were. Obviously, I did not know that we had played them when they had Stuckey. IMO they are the type of team that you honestly don't want on your schedule though. Overall, they do well in their league, and teams have nothing to win and everything to lose by playing them.
Maybe it's because I live here in the state of Washington, but, I've always respected that program and I didn't think of it as a guaranteed win by a longshot when I saw it on the schedule.

All the same, one of the messed up things with the RPI is that losses at the beginning of the season count equally to those at the end as do victories. I'm honestly not sure if we could beat UW right now.
As lousy as the BCS is, at least teams have a chance to move up in the rankings if they lose to a weak opponent early in the season. It's frustrating how a loss to a good opponent can boost the RPI, while a win over a weak opponent can lessen the RPI. That's all I'm really saying. That means it's more about who you lose to than what your record is, and there's a problem with that. (By the way, I'm just underlining, not shouting. I hope no one is offended. Shocked )

But, again, I drink the Kool Aid, and I support the team. I just think we deserve a little bit better than #108 when you look at some of the teams ahead of us. But, we'll fix it with the scheduling in the next couple of seasons. If we can do any kind of damage in the tourney and the early part of the season next year, we'll be in decent shape. As well as we are doing, I don't like our chances of post season play if we don't win the WCC tourney.


Last edited by athleticjames on Sun Feb 22, 2009 4:05 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by Geezaldinho on Sun Feb 22, 2009 3:55 pm

I'll agree that our chances of an NCAA tournament bid are near nil if we don't win out. I'm not so ready to concede that we won't be in post season play of some sort. An NIT bid isn't automatic for the first team in the conference to not go to the NCAA's, but it could happen. As you say, there are a couple of stinkers ahead of us in the RPI, and I think the selection committee would look at that especially if we come in second or third in the conference.

Especially if we wind up second. I see St. Mary's and GU going to the NCAA's, and us going to the NIT in that scenario.

I think it would be pretty hard to leave out a team with a cinderella season (us) and put a team that didn't do as well into post season play (SMC)

That's what the NIT is supposed to be the consolation prize for.

Then there's the CBI.

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Re: Is RPI a broken model?

Post by onetouchfutbol on Sun Feb 22, 2009 10:53 pm

Yeah, I forgot about the CBI. I hate to be a pessimist, but, I think that at this rate the only WCC team this year in the NCAA's will be Gonzaga unless Mills comes back earlier than expected. Unfortunately, you have to have a bigger basketball name than we have to make the NIT unless you get lucky.

I'll think positive and drink the Kool Aid for a few more months though. We will upset Gonzaga in the WCC tourney. (There I convinced myself.)

GO PILOTS! Basketball Basketball Basketball Basketball Basketball

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