Originally Posted by form
Gouci... is it me or do CSUN, Davis and Riverside have record setting numbers of D2 and just becoming D1 (Bakersfield w/no league affliation) teams on their schedule?
I mean that just crushes the conference strength rating playing NON D1 matches.... and they each have a bunch.
Fullerton actually looks to have fewer than past years... but the other three ... wow that hurts those playing seriously.
This is my take. The number of D2 teams the bottom of the conference plays is irrelevant to UC Irvine & Long Beach St. I wasn't even aware they calculated a conference strength rating or used it in the rankings.
If the formula for getting an NCAA at-large is beating 4 ranked teams, then having more ranked teams in your conference makes that goal easier. What matters more to UCI & LBS is having the 3rd & 4th place Big West team be ranked at the end of the season. If only UCI & LBS are ranked than the Big West runner up needs to beat FOUR ranked non-conference opponents which is tough to do to get an at-large. But if the 3rd & 4th place BW teams are ranked that number drops down having to only beat TWO ranked non-conference teams for the runner-up to snag an at-large.
In 2008 & 2009 the 3rd & 4th best Big West teams were not ranked and the BW runner-up didn't get an NCAA at-large. But in 2007 Cal Poly & CSUN were both ranked at year's end and the Big West had 2 teams in the top 43 where either one would have received an at-large. That IS NOT a coincidence.
Cal Poly's inability to get ranked at season's end the last 2 seasons has led me to think UCI & LBS can't rely on the other 7 Big West teams to help their ranking at all. UCI & LBS will just have to improve to the point where they can beat 4 ranked non-conference teams on their own. Fortunately that seems to have happened this year. To allow room for error they'll need to schedule about 6 of these beatable ranked caliber teams since every year a few, like St. Mary's last year, end up disappointing for whatever reason.