By Jeff Portnoy
I am going to hold off on my Big West predictions, game by game, for a few weeks. What i have instead are the just released computer ranking from Team Rankings.com, a site that predicts every game in sports, including college basketball.
Here is what Team Rankings says about the Rainbow Warriors and the Big West. I think you will find very interesting.
First, it predicts Hawaii will go 17-12 this season and 9--7 in the Conference. It predicts that Hawaii has a 13% chance of winning the league championship and 11% chance of winning the Conference Tournament. It says Hawaii " toughest games" outside the Conference will be Missouri ( 5% chance of winning) Boise (22%) and New Mexico State (42%). In the Conference, it predicts the toughest games for UH will be 7 road games with Hawaii a favorite only at Riverside. The odds of Hawaii winning another Big West road game range from 27% at UCSB to 45% at Fullerton.
On the other end of the spectrum, Team Rankings has Hawaii as a" strong favorite" against home non league opponents Chaminade, Hilo, New Orleans ( almost a lock against these teams), Neb Omaha, TN State and Norfolk State. It has Hawaii as a strong favorite at home against league opponents UC Riverside, Fullerton, Long Beach and Irvine( ranging from 85% to 65%).
All other games are tossups as of now. It predicts Hawaii has a 93% chance to make the Conference Tournament, 48% to make the semis, 24% to make the finals, and as i said earilier, an 11% chance to win. By the way, it gives Hawaii a 1% chance of an at-large bid to the Big Dance.
As for the league, Team Rankings predicts Santa Barbara to win the league with 10 wins, with Cal Poly second. Then Cal St. Northridge followed by UH. Right behind UH is UC Davis, then Irvine, L. Beach St, Fullerton and Riverside. It says UCSB has a 21% chance to win the Conference regular season and 20% chance to win the tournament.
Interesting stuff based upon thousands of computer simulations, but that's all it is. Its the reason they lace them up, but these guys sell their services ( mostly for gambling reasons), so they work hard at it. Anyway, it all begins tonight. See you at the Arena.