Arkansas is legit - we have had some really bad seasons the last few, but we had a better winning percentage than just about anyone in the 90's - they tried to be objective with this and the stats say we're #8 - you wanna dispute track & field next? - The UnderHog
Hi, UnderHog -
I like your nickname. . . . Very creative. 8-)
I agree that Arkansas is legit. And I agree that Street & Smith tried to be objective in this effort - which is why I posted this in the first place. I especially commend S&S for not only trying to be objective but for being up front about their methodology & also for posting the data so it can be examined & analyzed. Scientists publish their results in scientific journals for the purpose of "peer review." They are actively seeking criticism to see where the flaws may be in their methodology. in their results, or in their conclusions. I offer my suggestions in this same spirit. Not as a criticism of Street & Smith, but as a contribution to their effort & in admiration for what they've done.
In regard to Arkansas, I have suggested that they be dropped 3 spots to #11. That doesn't suggest they're not legit. Being one of the top dozen programs in the 66 year history of national championship play is outstanding.
I dropped them because their rating was inflated by a Final Four appearance in 1945. In 1945, there were 8 teams in the entire tournament. To get to the Final Four, you had to win just one game. I don't think that this is worthy of the same number of rating points as getting to the Final Four today when you have to win 4 games to get there.
Who were the "Final Four" in 1945? Determining this further compounds the problem. At that time, half of the Top Ten teams were going to the NIT each year. And that tournament was in fact the more prestigious of the two then. In my opinion, the true Final Four in 1945 were the two finalist of the NCAA tournament & the two finalists of the NIT - not the four semi-finalists of either tournament.
In their methodology, S&S gave more points to Arkansas for that one tournament win than they gave to DePaul that same year for winning 3 games & fighting their way past half of the Top Ten to win the NIT. Therefore, I adjusted their results to reflect that & as a result Arkansas drops down a little from #8 to #11 & DePaul moves up a little from #57 to #54.
This leaves the two programs pretty much in the same relative position that they were in before I tinkered. I didn't think that anybody was too badly undervalued in this ranking. Colorado & Loyola (Chi) came closest. Colorado was rnner-up in the first NIT & won that tournament in 1940. Both of these accomplishments deserved more credit than they received, so I jumped them from #65 to #59. Loyola was runner-up in both the 1939 & 1949 NITs. They too were jumped as a result - from #97 to #91.
I thought that the most egregious errors by Street & Smith came from overvaluing performances in early NCAA tournaments. Holy Cross & Dartmouth were the most glaring examples of this. So, my biggest adjustments were to drop teams down. I dropped Holy Cross, 1947 NCAA champ, 15 spots from#68 to #83 & Dartmouth, NCAA runner-up in 1942 & '44, 11 spots from #66 to #77.
I welcome any other suggestions for improving the list. More could be done. I only made what I thought were the most obvious adjustments.