Gopher basketball bubble watch: Edition 1 Jan. 9

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If we can read a calendar, and believe us, there are no guarantees on that, this is the first of what will be eight weekly looks at the Gopher basketball team's chances of making the NCAA tournament.

On behalf of our entire sports staff (OK, the only other person on it is Joe Nelson), welcome, we're glad to have you on this two-month journey.

We'll be even more happy should the Gophers keep winning Big Ten games, as they have opened the season with two wins in three conference appearances.

How this will work is quite simple. We'll give you the maroon and gold's record, strength of schedule, RPI, wins against the RPI top 50 and top 100, bad losses, and BPI.

A few definitions for those of you not familiar.

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.

Without further ado, we present the case Minnesota is making.

RECORD: 13-3 (2-1 in the B1G)

RPI: 45 (down from 38 after win over Penn State)

SOS: 54 (86th in non-conference SOS)

BPI: 35 (sixth in B1G)

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

VS. RPI TOP 100 (W: Florida State, Nebraska-Omaha, Richmond. L: Syracuse, Michigan, Arkansas)

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

As of now, ESPN has the Gophers as an at-large in the tournament. We'll be back with you next week to see if it stays that way.

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