Bracketology: With seven spots left to decide...

Last year we started looking at the bracketology as early as February 10. Our guesses this time around aren't so far in advance, but the uncertainty remains: merely two weeks before the tournament, nobody aside from the hosts is guaranteed to make the Final 8.

For instance, tonight's Canada West games can throw everything below into disarray: the winners advance to the Final 8; the losers need to win the bronze-medal game and then hope the voters put them in as the wildcard. Then there's the OUA: both its semifinals go tomorrow, and if Carleton beats Ottawa, the West loser must beat Ottawa to advance. Otherwise, it's the two winners who punch their tickets. And then next weekend, the AUS and QUBL decide their champions, and we'll be more sure of who's going to Scotiabank Place by then, and who's left over for possible wild-card selection.

But for now, we're all guessing. (And we might be completely wrong. It's known to happen from time to time.)

On the two submitted ballots this week, we both have the Q rep in 8th, which shouldn't set off another national unity crisis but you never know. And neither of us has Carleton in the top two.

Rob Pettapiece
1. UBC (Canada West winner)
2. St. F-X (AUS winner)
3. Carleton (host)
4. Lakehead (OUA runner-up)
5. Calgary (Canada West runner-up)
6. Cape Breton (wild card)
7. Windsor (OUA third-place)
8. Laval (QUBL winner)

Neate Sager
1. UBC (Canada West winner)
2. St. F-X (AUS winner)
3. Ottawa (OUA winner)
4. Carleton (host)
5. Calgary (Canada West runner-up)
6. Cape Breton (wild card)
7. Windsor (OUA runner-up)
8. UQAM (QUBL winner)
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  1. ill go a bit of the upset route

    1) UBC (Canada West Winner)
    2) Carleton (OUA Winner & Host)
    3) Calgary (Canada West Runner Up)
    4) Windsor (OUA Runner Up)
    5) Ottawa (OUA Third-Place)
    6) Lakehead (OUA Fourth-Place & Wild Card)
    7) Saint Mary's (AUS Winner)
    8) McGill (QUBL Winner)

    yes I am going upset heavy here!

  2. St FX's loss tonight at home to Saint Mary's was big. If all goes according to plan, they now will have to beat St Mary's in the semifinals of the AUS just to get the opportunity to face Cape Breton in the final, assuming the Capers survive their semi. X is now no sure bet for a wild card should they lose either of those games.

    Should Cape Breton lose in the AUS final the only way I can see them possibly not grabbing the wild card is if UBC loses in the semi's tonight or if Ottawa U defeats Carleton tomorrow eliminating the need for the OUA play-in game. The argument for the 4th OUA team getting the wild card after losing both the semifinals and the play-in game becomes relatively weak. But if Ottawa beats Carleton the loser of the west semi might have a legitimate claim to the wild card.

    I'm making the trip from Ottawa to Sydney for the AUS tournament next week. Should be great.

  3. Yes, that throws a wrench in ...

  4. Lakehead a wildcard?
    You can't be serious.
    If LU loses the west final and then the 3rd place game, they'll have eight losses on the year.
    Sorry, but eight losses is not wildcard territory.
    No way Lakehead beats out X or Cape Breton for the wildcard.
    Ditto Windsor.
    And even Ottawa U is screwed if they lose the 3rd place game.
    There's no way 4 Ontario teams get in.
    The OUa is guaranteed three teams and that's it.

  5. I don't believe any of the three brackets proposed above work according to the new seeding rules. Rule V states that "where two teams are from the same sports conference, they shall be placed on opposite sides of the draw". I took this to mean that it could set up a possible Calgary/UBC or SFX/Capers final?

  6. Anon 10:43

    Im basing my predictions on Dal & St Mary's upsetting Cape Breton and StFX in the AUS semis and Lakehead losing closely in the 3rd place game, with the choosing committee giving Lakehead some weight for their win over Carleton

  7. @10:56: Good point, how could we forget! But what do you do when 3 OUA teams are there?

    In that event, you flip Cape Breton and Calgary. That way the AUS teams are 2-5 and the Can West teams are 1-6, so no issue.

    It's moot now after what happened to UBC ... so here's another run at it.

    1) Carleton/Ottawa winner
    2) UBC (wild card)
    3) Carleton/Ottawa
    4) Cape Breton (AUS)
    5) Saskatchewan (Can West champ)
    6) Calgary (Can West runner-up)
    7) Windsor
    8) UQAM

  8. Game was tied 85-85 after regulation but Sask blew
    the doors off UBC in OT, outscoring them 19-2..a shocking collapse at home.
    So...what happens if UBC loses the bronze medal game to SFU?
    They couldn't get the wildcard, surely?
    What is Josh Whyte's status?
    Did he play at all Friday?

  9. When a sports conference has three teams at the nationals, then two will be placed on one side of the draw and one on the other. I would think, to be fair, that the two highest ranking teams would be split with the other being put on the same side of the draw as one of them.

    The rules don't address four teams from one sports conference (which is possible this year in theory but I don't see happening). If it did, you would think the seeding committee would respect the spirit of the rule changes and put two on one side and two on the other.

    With UBC's loss, I think that the wild card will now go to either SFX or the Capers as long as they both make the AUS finals and play a close game. If one of them stumbles in the semi-finals or gets blown out in the finals, then the Western bronze medal winner would get the wild card.

  10. There's no way X gets to the tournament if they don't win the AUS.
    If they don't win the AUS tournament, that means they have six losses on the season.
    UBC has lost only two games all year and were ranked #1 from November to now except for one week.
    And I wouldn't bet on Cape Breton either.
    If CB some how loses this tournament in front of their home fans, they'll have four losses.
    My math says two losses beats 4 and 6.
    So my advice to those two AUS teams...just win, baby.

  11. Sager had it right at 1:44 am Saturday. UBC gets in with their season's record, and long stretch at # 1. His seeding is close, but, I would think Saskatchewan should get the # 4 seed, and Ottawa # 5, if they win against Lakehead. So, our guess is ...

    1. Carleton
    2. UBC
    3. Cape Breton
    4. Saskatchewan
    5. Ottawa
    6. Calgary
    7. Windsor
    8. UQAM

    The AUS gets 1 team, and Ontario doesn't get 4 at the expense of UBC .

  12. Ottawa, Calgary and Windsor are probably pretty close between the three of them. Thomas' seedings would work very well.

    Here's how it could also go, if we want to avoid same-conference matchups:

    1) Carleton (Host)
    2) Cape Breton/X (AUS winner)
    3) UBC (wild card)
    4) Saskatchewan (Canada West winner)
    5) Windsor (OUA West)
    6) Ottawa (OUA third-place)
    7) Calgary (Canada West runner-up)
    8) UQAM/Laval (QUBL champion; I believe UQAM wins)

    We could just as easily put UBC No. 2, flip Calgary to 6 and Ottawa to 7. Windsor has a good RPI and the past three years, the third OUA team has been seeded 5th, 7th and 7th.

    Putting the third OUA team ahead of a division winner seems like a tough sell. One also wonders how much stock the committee will put in Windsor's 3-point overtime win at Ottawa earlier in the season.

    As an aside, on a neutral floor, percentage-wise there's almost no difference between being a 2 and a 3 seed, or between 6 and 7. It matters who you're prepping for and playing, of course.