Thanks, North Carolina

In case you haven’t been paying attention, UNC went 2-5 in January and are now a half-game out of last place in the ACC. So, I would like to thank them for being ranked so highly when SU beat them, in order to kick-start the buzz about the Orange program and the team’s confidence in their ability to beat anyone. The Cuse boys have taken it from there, thank you very much. But, defending champs or not, that game has definitely fallen out of the “quality wins” column, as the Heels have plummeted. (Their win over Michigan State in December is the only thing keeping them afloat right now.) I’m of two minds about their increasingly dreadful season. On the one hand, it’s always fun to see an inflated ACC powerhouse getting regularly pasted; on the other, I wouldn’t mind if they did win a few down the road, just to keep our resumé that much stronger.

Meanwhile, the other win at MSG is looking better every day. Cal is not outstanding, but they are turning in a pretty good season and are the favorites to win the Pac-10 — although, this year, that is a lot like being the thinnest kid at fat camp. In fact, going by RPI, Cal is SU’s third-best win behind WVU and Georgetown. By comparison, check out how far you have to go down the list of vanquished Orange foes to get to UNC (RPIs in parentheses):

Georgetown (4)
WVU (9)
Cal (23)
Cornell (33)
Florida (52)
USF (54)
Seton Hall (59)
Marquette (60)
Oakland (67)
Notre Dame (70)
UNC (76)
Memphis (78)

That’s right — the Oakland win is more impressive, from an RPI standpoint, than the North Carolina win right now. Oakland. Unreal.

In case you were wondering: of SU’s remaining opponents, Providence currently sits at 98, but the others are all ahead of UNC at the moment. Even St. John’s at 73. UL, UConn and UC are all in the 40s, and Villaova and Georgetown are 3 & 4 respectively. SU is 2, a few thousandths behind Kansas.

(H/T to my brother for alerting me to the relative RPI positions of UNC and Oakland, which motivated me to take a closer look.)

One Comment

  1. Posted February 4, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Nice observation. I had been watching out of the corner of my eye as UNC, Cal, and Florida all did their best to undermine our early season resume, but I hadn’t realized how bad it was for UNC. On the other hand, it’s good to see that Cal has bounced back. Frankly, the joy of seeing UNC miss the tournament far overcomes any pain from the hit to our SOS.

    How about Cornell though, eh? They could actually get an at-large if they needed it!

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