Saturday, February 2, 2013

Clemson at BC: Something’s Gotta Give

As I sit here for The TigerSwag’s annual Winter Retreat (read vacation for my wife and I), I’m struck by how many things working against Clemson in today’s game at Boston College. And yet, this is a game Clemson must win to have any legitimate shot at being a bubble team come Selection Sunday.

So, for Clemson to have a shot at making the NCAA Tournament, something’s gotta give, and it needs to start today at BC:
  • Clemson is 6-4 over their last 10 games, but everything has come in twos: WW, LL, WW, LL, and WW. Clemson will be gunning for their third win in a row, something they haven’t done all season
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • Clemson has just two road wins all season (and neither is over a decent team – FU & USC), and Clemson is 0-3 on the road in ACC play.
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • Clemson has finished at least 0.500 in league play for the last five seasons, but after losing at home to FSU, Clemson needs to find at least one road win. Yet, BC may not be the locale as Clemson has just one win in Chestnut Hill since BC joined the league
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, they need to sweep at least 2 teams, and two games against BC will be one of their better opportunities. However, since BC joined the league, Clemson has never swept them.
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • Clemson’s current RPI and Strength of Schedule are over 100, and BC won’t provide much help as they are ranked 145. But even wins over lower ranked teams gives you a little bump. And a loss would be disasterous.
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • Clemson is favored by 1, and is 5-1 against the spread on the road including 2-1 in ACC play. On the other side, BC is 5-3-1 against the spread at home, including 2-1 in ACC play.
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
  • Statistically, Clemson and BC are nearly identical. For instance:
    • BC scores just under 4 more points a game (68.0 to 64.2)
    • Clemson collects just over 1 rebound more per game (34.3 to 33.1)
    • BC dishes out just over 1 more assist per game (12.5 to 11.4)
    • Clemson shoots 10 percentage points (0.441 to 0.431)
    • For Clemson to be considered a bubble team, something has gotta give
So, when Clemson tips off with BC today around noon, something is going to give. Let’s just hope it’s BC rather than Clemson’s tourney chances.

Note: Tim Bourret played no part in this analysis, though hopefully he’d be proud...

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