Skip to main content

Gopher Basketball Bubble Watch: Edition 2, Jan. 16

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Believe it or not, NCAA Tournament time is quickly approaching. Sure, two months sounds like a lot of time, but for a team like the Minnesota Golden Gophers it really isn't. Minnesota will likely be on the bubble when Selection Sunday rolls around in early March.

The Gophers are 13-4 overall and 2-2 in the Big Ten.

Amelia Rayno of the Star Tribune believes it will take at least nine conference wins to reach the "dance." Minnesota still doesn't have a victory over a team ranked in the top 25, although they took No. 5 Michigan State to overtime on the road.

The Gophers host No. 11 Ohio State Thursday night at Williams Arena. It's the second of four consecutive games against ranked opponents. They also have games coming up against No. 3 Wisconsin and No. 14 Iowa, which beat the Buckeyes this week. Rayno believes Minnesota has a chance to beat the Buckeyes.

ESPN's Joe Lunardi has the Gophers listed as one of the last four teams into the NCAA Tournament in his latest bracketology, which was released Thursday. Lunardi has Minnesota in a first-round game against Stanford for the right to hold the No. 12 seed in the South Regional.

Michigan, Ohio State, Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan State are all in Lunardi's field of 68, with the Badgers and Spartans holding No. 1 seeds.

Statistical data, outside of wins, will play a large role in the Gophers' chances of reaching the tournament. RPI and BPI, as defined below, are very important.

RPI: Rating Percentage Index, a number used to rank teams based on strength of schedule and weight said team’s wins and losses. It is one of the numbers considered heavily by the selection committee when it chooses tournament participants.

BPI: Basketball Power Index, a similar ranking system that produces a number based on not only what the RPI considers, but more in depth numbers as well.

Here's the statistical case the Gophers are making.

RECORD: 13-4 (2-2 in the B1G)

RPI: 34 (up for 45 last week)

SOS: 40 (up from 54 last week)

BPI: 36 (down from 35 last week)

VS. RPI TOP 50: 1-3 (win over Florida State, losses to Syracuse, Michigan, Michigan State)

VS. RPI TOP 100: 2-1

BAD LOSSES (defined by us as losses to teams outside the top-68 in RPI): Arkansas

Next Up

Reader-submitted video taken of people throwing fireworks at people and cars on July 4, 2022.

Watch: Fireworks fired at people, buildings in downtown Minneapolis

Footage shared widely on social media shows chaotic scenes downtown on Fourth of July evening.

Ellie Ragin

Search for missing Elle Ragin shifts to park in Stearns County

Mississippi River County Park is closed to the public until further notice.

storm, severe weather, derecho

Developing derecho likely to blast southwest Minnesota

Damaging winds up to 90 mph are the main threat.

Screen Shot 2022-07-05 at 12.29.03 PM

Two Minneapolis restaurants announce closures

It's the end of the line for Pie & Mighty and Bunny's Bar & Grill.

Grape Jelly

Someone is sending St. Paul resident unsolicited grape jelly

A resident said they received a large number of deliveries containing only jars of jelly.

Braxton Sorenson

Family identifies 15-year-old bicyclist killed by suspected drunk driver

A GoFundMe page has been created to support his family.

McKinley Phillips

Woodbury man sentenced to life for killing wife as her kids watched movie

A jury found McKinley J. Phillips, 40, guilty in less than 24 hours last week in Washington County.

storm, severe

Severe storms in South Dakota could blast into Minnesota Tuesday

Storms are blasting through northern South Dakota Tuesday mid-morning.

Screen Shot 2022-07-05 at 9.19.07 AM

Missing Minnesotan's boat washes ashore on island in middle of Atlantic

Joseph Matthew Johnson has been missing since November.

Boom Island

8 injured as gunfire erupts during July 4th celebrations at Boom Island

"Several" victims are in critical condition, a spokesperson with the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board said.

Screen Shot 2022-07-05 at 7.01.29 AM

Fireworks likely cause of garage blaze in Hugo

The fire fortunately didn't spread to the house.

Ellie Ragin

Police obtain 'valuable information' in search for missing 6-year-old Elle Ragin

The 6-year-old is still missing following the death of her mother by suicide.