Tar Heel Seed Comparison
Ultimately, every team has to play good opponents to advance in the NCAA Tournament. But seeding is important in determining exactly when and where you have to play those teams. With that in mind, here's a look at the credentials at some of the teams handed certain seeds on Sunday night's selection show. This table (using data from WarrenNolan.com) compares the credentials of Carolina, an 8 seed, with the four 7 seeds. According to the official NCAA seed list, the committee ranked all four of the below teams ahead of Carolina:
|Team||D1 record||Seed||RPI||SOS||vs top 100||Last 10|
When asked about the bracketing process on Sunday night's selection show, NCAA selection committee chairman Mike Bobinski said, "A lot of mechanical things happen," when the committee has to slide teams one line higher or lower. He went on to say, "We don't look at matchups."
Looking at the above table, and looking at the fact that the NCAA coincidentally managed to potentially set up a Carolina-Kansas matchup in Kansas City, it's hard not to have a very clear understanding of exactly what some of those "mechanical things" might be--starting with the mechanics of cashing checks from the tournament's $10.8 billion contract with Turner and CBS, a contract that requires high ratings in order to be successful.
It's quite a coincidence that Carolina and Kansas have been in the same region in three of the nine Tar Heel NCAA Tournaments (in which UNC has participated) during the Roy Williams era. Prior to that, the two programs hadn't been in the same region since 1985, which means 18 tournaments passed without the teams being paired, and suddenly they show up in the same region three times in nine years. There must have been a lot of "mechanical things" that caused that phenomenon.