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UB MAC Tournament seeding with three to go

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Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

We didn't get Ohio over BG, but for the second straight game we got - in addition to UB's own win - bigtime MAC East help from the Miami RedHawks.

Remember way back when when Eric Washington nearly beat us, but barely ran out of time in Oxford? This time he pulled it off. Against Kent State. One game after taking down Akron. Two games after taking down Bowling Green.

Just as much as UB is helping their own case with a three-game win streak, Miami's doing a heck of a lot of good, too.

I'll have a normal who-to-root for post up Saturday before the games, and note that Toledo and NIU didn't play today due to a busted water main near Savage Arena. But the UB and Miami wins, the latter especially, really move the needle on UB's chances to keep moving up.

The most important game is the next one.

Let's talk tiebreakers. The current MAC top six, any relevant tiebreakers, and UB's tiebreaker situation against them:

Team Record UB tiebreaker versus
CMU 11-4 L (0-2 H2H)
Toledo 10-4 L (0-1 H2H)
Bowling Green 10-5 1-0 vs KSU W (1-0 H2H)
Kent State 10-5 0-1 vs BG W (1-0 H2H)
Buffalo 9-6
Akron 8-7 2-0 vs WMU L (1-1 H2H; UA 1-0 vs CMU, UB 0-1)

Note that the actual tiebreaker with Akron will change from game to game, depending on the top seed or a potential multi-team tiebreaker. But as I've been saying with other teams, if the Zips catch us we've got bigger problems than tiebreakers.

Note also that Toledo could fall another half game back once they actually play NIU tomorrow. It's obviously good in the first place, but we'd be better off in a multiteam tie dealing with Toledo and an East team than CMU and an East team.

Onto the East teams. Two days ago the goals, in order of importance, were:

  • Jump Akron by beating them and matching or besting their record in the final three
  • Jump BG by matching or besting their record over the next three and beating them on senior night
  • Jump Kent by beating them and besting their record over the other three
The bolded are what went right for UB tonight.

The most important game is the next one.

It's much simpler with three games left than with four. Here's a peek:

UB FINISHES 3-0

At 12-6, UB is ahead of Akron and WMU's best possible mark, and can at worst finish tied with Bowling Green and Kent State but with 2-0 records against each, a huge advantage in any hyptothetical multi-team tiebreaker. UB would win the MAC East and sit #3 at worst.

With a little MAC West chaos, ideally knocking Toledo down into a multi-team tie, UB could climb to #2.

With a LOT of MAC West chaos, which knocks CMU below Kent State, Toledo, and Buffalo, who all tie at 12-6, UB climbs to #1.

The most important game is the next one.

UB FINISHES 2-1

Ohio is actually the least important game of the three. 2-1 with a loss to Ohio gives us:
-At worst, one game behind Kent or BG, but winning any three-way tie, two-way ties with Kent or BG, but likely losing a two way tie with Akron or WMU. Possibly 5th.
-At best, 11-7, tied with one of Kent/BG, ahead of the other. Likely 3rd, possibly 2nd with MAC West chaos

2-1 with a loss to Kent or BG:
-We claim fourth if the team we beat loses one of their other final three games

The Most Important Game Is The Next One.

Here's the roadmap for East team tiebreakers the rest of the way out:
  • To jump Kent State, beat them and match their final two games
  • To jump Bowling Green, match their next two games and beat them
  • To stay ahead of Akron, match their record or finish in a three way tie involving another MAC East team.
The post-Saturday version of this post will account for all possibilities. There will probably be a spreadsheet involved.