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October 22nd, 2015


07:26 pm - An Open Letter To LAFFBall
To Quasi Skunk,
For the first decade of LAFFBall, it was a booming success with many hours put in by the organizers promoting and umpiring the monthly event. Despite a move from Waukegan to Lombard that alienated many from Wisconsin, numbers and participation continued to grow. However, in the past couple of years, attendance has been in a sharp decline. Some of this has been due to some regular players moving away or becoming busy in other aspects of their lives, but we have also seen a marked decrease in the casual player and a lack of new participants. As active players who've been attending for years, many of us worry about the future of LAFFBall if number continues to dip.

In past years, attendance often would reach 30 participants on the nicer Saturdays, sometimes flirting with 50. While attendance for the first three games in 2015 was decent, it still lagged behind past years. In August and September, both very nice weather dates, we barely had enough people to field two teams, 15 in August, 18 in September. We then dipped to 10 in October, despite it being 20 degrees warmer than last year's October game. As people who've been active with LAFFBall for years, we want to offer suggestions to improve turnout so that this unique event doesn't become a thing of the past.

First, we recommend adding either a co-chair or second in command for the event, someone local to Chicago that can cover for weeks where your mascot duties take priority or the threat of weather makes committing to travel a risky propostion. The additional person could help run softball in your absence, check on the fields when weather is questionable, and be an local ambassdor for the event.

Second, we recommend expanding the social media presence of the event. Create a LAFFBall profile on Facebook or FA, and increase the usage of the LAFFBall Twitter account.. With minimal current voice through Twitter and the basically defunct Live Journal, knowledge of the event is primarily based on word of mouth, which is additionally difficult without Chicagoland representation.

Third, we need to look for additional ideas to make the LAFFBall weekend an all day, or event multi-day event. It is much easier to attract outside or casual attendees if they are getting a weekend full of entertainment instead of only a softball game they might be lukewarm about participating in. When scheduled on the same weekend as Downers Grove Bowling, it is a natural alignment; however the bowling group and LAFFBall does not entirely coincide. When LAFFBall doesn't line up with Bowling, there is little else beyond the game to encourage attendance. Options we could consider include a informal group event like Laser Tag or a movie on Friday night. Then ideally we would also have a picnic/BBQ at the park following each game. This would also include having solid plans in case of a rainout, whether it's go-karts, arcades, bowling, or a movie, offering alternative plans alternative plans will keep people from writing off the event due to the threat of weather.

Fourth, if possible, bring back the anniversary game in July at an alternate location to Madison Meadows. For a couple of years, we went to Wisconsin for the July game (though it was organized by MFF and FCN). It had an excellent turnout every year and resulted in some additional participation for future events in Lombard.

We feel LAFFBall still has the potential to be a great event that gets 30+ people on a monthly basis like it used to. Leading this event requires hard work, open communication, and dedication. It's often a thankless job and people are more likely to criticize than pat you on the back. We appreciate the effort you've undertaken in keeping up the event after Stevie stepped aside. However, if we are going to keep LAFFBall from dying a slow, quiet death, it's going to take a group effort. It's not fair to you to put the weight of everything on your shoulders. Let's get together and make LAFFBall great again.

Sincerely,

Veteran and New LAFFBallers

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August 2nd, 2014


11:17 am - American Map of Furry Cons
Yesterday, I posted a map of all furry cons in the United States to my Twitter account. As of this posting, the original tweet has 80+ favorites and 30+ retweets. I've received several questions and some criticism over the map. As a result, I want to explain the critieria I used to put this together.

First off, the source for the data is from Wikifur, a wonderful site for data on all things furry. If a convention that means all the criteria below is missing, then someone with knowledge should update the information on their website.

Now, to the criteria.

1. Only active cons. This means that I omitted conventions that are no longer viable, regardless of how recent. No FCN. No FurFright.

2. Only cons that have held one event. There are cons that would join the map soon: Furry Migration and Anthro New England are great examples. However, since they haven't had their first event yet, I had no attendance data to go on.

3. If no attendance data was easily available, the con was omitted from the map. This is the case with FurryCon and Campfire Tails, both which met the first two criteria, but which do not have posted attendance numbers.

I would love for this map to be a continuous project in the coming years. I think it would be fun to see how cons have become popular, how they've become unpopular, how they've gone defunct, all over time. It could also be useful to convention staffs who need to make date changes or, heaven forbid, location changes.

I welcome any constructive thoughts on this map. Thank you.FurryCons

(4 comments | Leave a comment)

July 8th, 2014


06:38 pm - FA, MFF, and False Accusations
I’ve been accused of a lot of things in my life, some from misinformation, some from simple miscommunications, and some from sociopaths with a black heart. Generally, I will either try to correct people or just laugh it off. However, there are times when people are so determined to ruin your name, you have to stand up and fight back. This is one of those times where one person’s lie has resulted in my name being pulled through the mud and my social status with my friends being strongly affected.

The story goes like this. A couple of weeks ago, @Novemurr IM’d me for the first time in several months. Apparently, his FA account had been hacked into and he was gathering information to figure out who did it. I told him that I had no knowledge of any hacking. It wasn’t clear to me at the time that no matter what I told him, I was going to get the blame. Before closing the chat window, he bragged that he had “inside information” that I had done this.

Now, my closest friends know that I am not the brightest when it comes to computers. I know how to use Excel, play videos on YouTube, and that’s about it. Asking me to hack into anything would be like asking anyone not named Arthur to pull the sword from the stone!

The following week, I’m linked by a friend to the “most boring YCH ever” on FurAffinity. When I click on the link, I receive a notice that my account had been suspended. I was baffled. This had to be a mistake. I refreshed the page. Nope, same message.

Reading the notice, I had been accused of vandalizing @Novemurr’s FA account and had been suspended for one month because of it. They justified this because of an IP address match.

As many people know, I host friends at my apartment constantly, practically every other weekend and sometimes during the week. As a result, many people have access to my laptop and in turn, my IP address. I don't want to outright blame my friends because I trust them with all my heart. There is also the possibility that someone duplicated my IP address for this act. I’ve consulted those who are well versed in the world of I/T and they have said that while this is very difficult, it’s far from impossible.

Immediately, I sent an e-mail to the FA accounts department, asking for further details. As of this writing, it has been over 2 weeks and 4 e-mails with no reply. (Granted, when the website doesn’t work half the time, do you really expect anyone associated with it to be working?) Despite FA refusing to share any information with me, there is an uninvolved group they proactively spread word to.

This weekend, I was contacted by a member of the @midwestfurfest board. He informed me that @Dragoneer had been in touch them recently. Dragoneer shared with the MFF board details surrounding my suspension; a liberty that was not given to me, as mentioned earlier. I explained to the board member everything written here so far. Though, I questioned why Dragoneer was going to the MFF board in the first place. What do any alleged actions have to do with my ability to be on MFF staff, especially when there isn’t a public relations issue involved?

Ultimately, I was informed that the MFF board requested that I step down as the fursuit track lead over a mere accusation of minor importance. The more I thought about it, it was clear this was not worth the time and energy to fight when the board refused to even give me an honest chance to defend myself from such bogus allegations.

One other reason they gave was that this was the “straw that broke the camel’s back.” That’s a creative way of putting it. The only other conflict I’ve experienced with MFF staff is when I openly disagreed with another board member’s opinion on how a now-defunct convention closed its door. This board member vilified their former staff for not “stepping up to the plate” when leadership wanted to step down, which I took personal offense to as I was staff for that con.

There are a couple of things that are crystal clear to me involving all of this.

1. @Novemurr has a petty grudge against me that he will continue to hold until the day he dies. He’s spent hours, if not days, digging up any dirt he can find (or asking others do it for him). When he can’t, he will crop tweets to take my quotes horribly out of context to vilify me. It’s laughable that he could take any moral high ground when his biggest contribution to the fandom is paying for porn of his character for others to view.

2. @Dragoneer must have some personal issue with me to bring a wild, unfounded accusation against me and to censor his accounts department. On top of this, to go to the MFF board to get me punished surrounding an issue that has nothing to do with the convention.

3. The board of @midwestfurfest needs to reevaluate their decision making process. Using bogus information from an unrelated third party to deny offers of time from would-be volunteers sets a poor precedence for future decisions.


I understand this entry could result in further actions against me by FurAffinity and their puppet master, @Dragoneer. At this point, it doesn’t matter. Add @Novemurr to the mix, and all parties involved are on a witch hunt to defame me to anybody who will listen. I refuse to let this happen. I don’t care how many combined followers these individuals have on their various accounts, the truth stands above all. These liars must be held accountable for what they spread.

Current Location: United States, ,
Current Mood: pissed offpissed off

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September 9th, 2012


02:54 am - Pick A Role
Ok. Without knowing physical descriptions, which of the following five characters would you most like to play? Keep in mind, these are fursuit characters, so talking is strongly discouraged.

1.
"As the oldest of the brothers, #1 spent many hours picking on his little brothers. This trait has spilled over into other social situations with friends and acquaintances. While his playful antics can make him come off as something of a bully to some, they are always meant to be in good fun. #1 is also very competitive with his brothers and others. He will turn anything and everything into a contest and enjoys taking part in activities that encourage competition. It is not uncommon to see him wearing jerseys."

2.
"Being the 2nd oldest brother, #2 tried to avoid the label of being “#1's little brother.” However, puberty was kind to him and made him almost as tall as his older brother. To this day, he enjoys being the “tall, dark, and handsome” one in the family and plays the part very well. He is social, but far from overbearing. This suave gentleman flirts with everyone he meets, from close friends to complete strangers, but avoids being improper. #2 can be seen around the bar most often, sporting a jacket or dark dress shirt."

3.
"Being the middle child, #3 grew up surrendering attention to his two older brothers as well as his two younger brothers. Now as an adult, he is still starved for attention from anyone who will give it to him. Because of this, #3 is very quick to trust people and will quickly make friends in his mind, even if the other party doesn’t move as fast to do so. However, #3 is easily distracted by new people, especially those who give him more attention. It is not uncommon for him to make dozens of new “friends” in less than an hour of lobby roaming. As a way of getting attention, #3 has a very colorful wardrobe with Hawaiian shirts and other bright-colored clothing are his favorites to wear."

4.
"#4 is the 2nd youngest of the five brothers. From a very young age, he’s been told how cute and adorable he is and will use that to his advantage any chance he gets. #4 is the most blatantly flirty of the group, knowing that he was blessed with a desirable appearance. It’s never a surprise to see #4 sitting in someone’s lap in a hotel lobby or cuddled up in a visible corner with someone. Of the five, #4 is the one most likely to show up at a dance late at night, though he will drag one or more of his brothers along at times. #4 is a fan of trendy, preppy clothing, that is, if he’s wearing any at all."

5.
"Having just entered adulthood, #5 still possesses much of the same energy he had growing up in a house with four older brothers. While his species are energetic by nature, #5 takes the cake. He is the kid that could not sit still for more than a few seconds and has to be on the go all the time. If a group of people are boring him with conversation, he will quickly jump from group to group to find people who are doing something besides just talking. Like his oldest brother, #5 loves fun and games, but just as something physical to do. He doesn’t care much for the competitive aspect of such games. #5 loves all of his brothers, but looks up to #3 more than anybody. This is noticeable when he steals #3’s shirts and wears them as his own to go along with his favorite sunglasses."

(3 comments | Leave a comment)

May 28th, 2012


12:16 am - Final Baseball Bracketology
All 30 conference champions have been crowned, several in dramatic fashion. Fresno State won the WAC with a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the 13th. Manhattan needed extras to win the MAAC. Samford needed 11 innings to win the SoCon. UCLA needed to hold off USC to win the Pac-12 title. Yesterday, Purdue took the Big Ten Championship after a bench-clearing brawl with in-state rival Indiana. This weekend was simply insane.

Of those 30 teams to earn automatic bids, only 2 will be hosting regionals, UCLA and Purdue. The other 14 hosts were reserved for at-large entrants. That means, on Monday, there will only be 20 spots up for grabs with the selection committee announces the field of 64 at 12pm EDT.

But now, for the final baseball bracketology of the 2012 season...

Baseball Bracketology - May 28, 2012
ALL CAPS - Conference champion

Tallahassee Regional
#1 Florida State
Vanderbilt
SAMFORD (SoCon)
UAB (C-USA)
Palo Alto Regional
Stanford
CAL STATE FULLERTON (Big West)
Utah Valley
FRESNO STATE (WAC)
Columbia Regional
#8 South Carolina
COASTAL CAROLINA (Big South)
Louisville
AUSTIN PEAY (OVC)
Raleigh Regional
NC State
Oregon State
Appalachian State
BELMONT (ATLANTIC SUN)
Gainesville Regional
#5 Florida
Ucf
KENT STATE (MAC)
BETHUNE COOKMAN (Won MEAC)
Coral Gables Regional
Miami
MISSISSIPPI STATE (SEC)
STONY BROOK (America East)
ARMY (Patriot)
Eugene Regional
#4 Oregon
Clemson
Gonzaga
CREIGHTON (MVC)
Gary Regional
PURDUE (Big Ten)
Arkansas
Indiana State
VALPARAISO (Horizon)
Chapel Hill Regional
#6 North Carolina
Mississippi
UNC WILMINGTON (CAA)
MANHATTAN (MAAC)
Tucson Regional
Arizona
San Diego
New Mexico State
MISSOURI (Big 12)
Waco Regional
#3 Baylor
Tcu
UT ARLINGTON (Southland)
ORAL ROBERTS (Summit)
Houston Regional
Rice
Oklahoma
Missouri State
CORNELL (Ivy)
Baton Rouge Regional
#7 Lsu
GEORGIA TECH (ACC)
Texas
LOUISIANA MONROE (Sun Belt)
College Station Regional
Texas A&M
Dallas Baptist
Wichita State
PRAIRIE VIEW A&M (SWAC)
Los Angeles Regional
#2 UCLA (Pac 12)
PEPPERDINE (WCC)
NEW MEXICO (MWC)
SACRED HEART (NEC)
Charlottesville Regional
Virginia
Kentucky
SAINT JOHN'S (Big East)
DAYTON (Atlantic-10)

First 6 Teams Out: Charleston, East Carolina, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, Washington

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May 26th, 2012


02:39 pm - Two days til Selection Monday
Two days ago, I claimed that the conference baseball tournaments in May made the conference basketball tournaments look tame in comparison. After two days filled to the brim with upset after upset, the bubble looks a lot different and is much smaller. The only teams who have played their way into the NCAA Tournament talk are teams who needed to win their conference tourney. Well, many are just one win away from doing so.

The Big 12 is one of the major conferences who are looking to send an extra team. With A&M and Texas gone and Baylor on the cusp of elimination, the Big 12 will get an extra bid if Missouri or Kansas pulls an upset on Sunday.

In the Big East, Louisville was the only lock to make the NCAA Tournament. But with their early exit, the Big East is guaranteed a second bid, maybe a third if the committee shows a liking to Saint John's.

Conference USA, which had two locks and a bubble team going into their tournament, is down to two teams: 5th-seeded Memphis and 7th-seeded UAB, two teams who had no chance at playing in the NCAA Tourney as an at-large.

The list goes on and on...

In the Big Ten, Purdue is just one win away from winning their 1st Big Ten Tournament title in school history. This is bad news for the Big Ten as they may be a one-bid conference with Indiana needing to win the tourney to advance to the NCAA Tourney while Michigan State is one of the teams on that rapidly shrinking bubble.

Baseball Bracketology - May 26, 2012
ALL CAPS - Projected conference champion

Tallahassee Regional
#1 Florida State
Ucf
SAMFORD (SoCon)
SACRED HEART (Won NEC)
Palo Alto Regional
Stanford
CAL STATE FULLERTON (Big West)
Utah Valley
SACRAMENTO STATE (WAC)
Tucson Regional
#8 Arizona
San Diego
NEW MEXICO (MWC)
NORTH DAKOTA STATE (Summit)
Gary Regional
PURDUE (Big Ten)
Arkansas
Indiana State
VALPARAISO (Horizon)
Gainesville Regional
#5 FLORIDA (SEC)
MIAMI (ACC)
KENT STATE (MAC)
BETHUNE COOKMAN (Won MEAC)
Raleigh Regional
NC State
Vanderbilt
East Carolina
ARMY (Won Patriot)
Los Angeles Regional
#4 Ucla
PEPPERDINE (WCC)
Wake Forest
CANISIUS (MAAC)
Charlottesville Regional
Virginia
Mississippi State
STONY BROOK (Won America East)
SAINT JOHN'S (Big East)
Baton Rouge Regional
#6 LSU (SEC)
Oregon State
Texas
LOUISIANA MONROE (Sun Belt)
College Station Regional
Texas A&M
Dallas Baptist
Missouri State
PRAIRIE VIEW A&M (Won SWAC)
Eugene Regional
#3 OREGON (Pac-12)
Ole Miss
Gonzaga
EASTERN ILLINOIS (OVC)
Lexington Regional
Kentucky
Clemson
Louisville
DAYTON (A-10)
Chapel Hill Regional
#7 North Carolina
COASTAL CAROLINA (Big South)
UNC WILMINGTON (CAA)
CORNELL (Won Ivy)
Columbia Regional
South Carolina
Georgia Tech
Appalachian State
BELMONT (Atlantic Sun)
Waco Regional
#2 BAYLOR (Big 12)
Tcu
MEMPHIS (C-USA)
UT-ARLINGTON (Southland)
Houston Regional
Rice
Oklahoma (Big 12)
Washington
SOUTHERN ILLINOIS (MVC)

Last 10 Teams Out: Virginia Tech, New Mexico State, Maryland, Wichita State, Sam Houston State, Charleston, Michigan State, Cal Poly, Tulane, California

(Leave a comment)

May 24th, 2012


01:34 pm - Big Ten Tournament & Baseball Bracketology
All across the country, conference baseball tournaments are taking place as I write this entry. From the Norwich, Connecticut down to Clearwater, Florida out to Las Vegas, Nevada, teams are fighting for their conference's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament. From experience I can tell you, if college basketball has madness in March, college baseball has Jack Torrance-level insanity.

Looking at things from a local perspective, the Big Ten Tournament at Huntington Park in Columbus has the chance to end the dreams of one of the many bubble teams.

Purdue - The Boilermakers are coming of their first conference championship since the Taft administration. In fact, the Boilermakers could be the first B1G team to host a regional since Michigan did so back in 2008. That is what Purdue is playing for this weekend. If they make it into the championship series on Saturday, they will most likely host a regional from U.S. Steel Yard in Gary, Indiana. If the Boilers lose to Ohio State today and make an early exit from the tournament, they may still host, but it would be as a #2 seed.

Michigan State - Sparty put together an impressive resume for the second straight season. Last year, the green and white missed out on the NCAA Tournament despite a 36-win season under head coach Jake Boss. This year, the bubble is weaker and the Spartans are firmly on it. They've already matched last year's win total. The committee may not like their series loss to lowly Michigan back in April, but have to like their road wins against Baylor and Purdue.

For the remaining four, Indiana, Penn State, Nebraska, and Ohio State, it's a win-and-in scenario. Anything less this weekend and their seasons are finished. In fact, Penn State and Nebraska play today in an elimination game which will end one team's season. Indiana and Ohio State face tough opponents in Michigan State and Purdue respectively later on today.

Up in Avon, Ohio, the MAC Tournament began yesterday. The MAC is a one-big league this year no matter how you slice it. The clear front runners are the Kent State Golden Flashes who finished 24-3 in conference play to win the East. If Kent State doesn't come out of the MAC, then it's anybody's guess. But with victories yesterday, Eastern Michigan, Western Michigan, and Miami University have the best chances of challenging last year's tournament darling.

The Horizon League Tournament is being played at Les Miller Field in Chicago, which has one of the most amazing backdrops in college baseball. Valparaiso is the #1 seed in the Horizon League Tournament, but the automatic bid could go to anybody in this conference. Wright State earned a bye in the tournament and is led by the Horizon Player of the Year in senior outfielder Tristan Moore. UIC is the #4 seed, but is the host of this tournament and has plenty of depth in the offense from 1 to 9.

Baseball Bracketology - May 24, 2012
ALL CAPS - Projected conference champion

Tallahassee Regional
#1 FLORIDA STATE (ACC)
UCF
Vanderbilt
FLORIDA ATLANTIC (Sun Belt)
Lexington Regional
Kentucky
MISSOURI STATE (MVC)
Maryland
KENT STATE (MAC)
College Station Regional
#8 Texas A&M
Tcu
Wake Forest
ORAL ROBERTS (Summit)
Houston Regional
RICE (C-USA)
Dallas Baptist
Georgia Tech
SAM HOUSTON STATE (Southland)
Los Angeles Regional
#5 Ucla
CAL STATE FULLERTON (Big West)
UNC WILMINGTON (CAA)
MANHATTAN (MAAC)
Charlottesville Regional
Virginia
Oregon State
COASTAL CAROLINA (Big South)
STONY BROOK (America East)
Gainesville Regional
#4 Florida
Miami
Washington
BETHUNE COOKMAN (Won MEAC)
Raleigh Regional
NC State
Mississippi State
East Carolina
AUSTIN PEAY (OVC)
Baton Rouge Regional
#6 LSU (SEC)
Oklahoma
Tulane
SAINT LOUIS (A-10)
Palo Alto Regional
Stanford
Clemson
Gonzaga
CORNELL (Won Ivy)
Eugene Regional
#3 OREGON (Pac-12)
Pepperdine
Utah Valley
SACRED HEART (Won NEC)
Gary Regional
PURDUE (Big Ten)
LOUISVILLE (Big East)
Indiana State
VALPARAISO (Horizon)
Chapel Hill Regional
#7 North Carolina
Ole Miss
APPALACHIAN STATE (SoCon)
ARMY (Won Patriot)
Columbia Regional
South Carolina
Texas
Charleston
BELMONT (Atlantic Sun)
Waco Regional
#2 BAYLOR (Big 12)
Arkansas
Wichita State
PRAIRIE VIEW A&M (Won SWAC)
Tucson Regional
Arizona
SAN DIEGO (WCC)
NEW MEXICO STATE (WAC)
NEW MEXICO (MWC)

Last 10 Teams Out: Virginia Tech, Cal Poly, California, Long Beach State, Michigan State, Georgia, Elon, Washington State, Saint John's, SE Louisiana

(Leave a comment)

March 28th, 2012


02:07 pm - FCN Fursuit Dance Competition
Two weeks until FCN!

This is just a reminder to get yourself ready, get yourself in shape, and gets those feet movin'! You have only a short time until the prelims for the FCN Fursuit Dance Competition, then a short time plus one day until the FCN Fursuit Dance Competition Finals. A few things to touch on:

First, have your music ready. Remember, 2-minute time limit. Highest quality format: > 192Kbit MP3/OGG, FLAC, WAV file on a CD or flash drive, no iPods please. Also, if you have your music ready and want to avoid the possibility of losing your flash drive at the con, you can e-mail the file to me. huscoon (at) gmail (dot) com. This will save a lot of headaches. :)

Second, the prelims are for the dance performers and their handlers only, no exceptions. Photography will be strictly forbidden. However, we will allow for video taping of individual performances for the private use of the dancer(s) involved.

Finally, have fun. That is why we are all here. The dance talent within the fandom is at an all-time high and they love putting on a show for everyone else. But even if your dance talent isn't quite up to par with the best of the best, you can still have a wonderful time in these competitions, be an entertaining part of the Finals, and make some great friends along the way. I encourage every fursuiter of every skill level to tryout if you enjoy dancing. There will be no regrets :)

Good luck,

Huscoon

Complete rundown of the rules: goo.gl/NwLX1

(Leave a comment)

March 11th, 2012


05:29 pm - Last Minute Bracketology
I should be studying for finals which begin tomorrow. I should be more worried about my grade in actuarial mathematics and not worried about what our basketball team's seed will be. I should be in the library and not on my couch, eyes glued to CBS. But enough about what I should be doing, here is what I have done.

Final Four Matchups
Midwest vs. West
East vs. South

Top 4 Seeds
1. Kentucky
2. Syracuse
3. North Carolina
4. Michigan State

Midwest Region (St. Louis)
Louisville
(1)Kentucky vs. (16)Mississippi Valley St/Western Kentucky
(8)Iowa State vs. (9)Connecticut
Portland
(5)Indiana vs. (12)Southern Miss
(4)Georgetown vs. (13)New Mexico State
Columbus
(6)St. Mary's vs. (11)Xavier
(3)Michigan vs. (14)Colorado
Omaha
(7)San Diego State vs. (10)Virginia
(2)Missouri vs. (15)Lamar

West Region (Phoenix)
Columbus
(1)Michigan State vs. (16)Long Island
(8)St. Louis vs. (9)Long Beach State
Nashville
(5)Memphis vs. (12)Colorado State/BYU
(4)Louisville vs. (13)Belmont
Nashville
(6)New Mexico vs. (11)Harvard
(3)Florida State vs. (14)Davidson
Omaha
(7)Gonzaga vs. (10)Alabama
(2)Kansas vs. (15)Montana

East Region (Boston)
Pittsburgh
(1)Syracuse vs. (16)Norfolk State/Vermont
(8)UNLV vs. (9)VCU
Albuquerque
(5)Creighton vs. (12)Miami/South Florida
(4)Wisconsin vs. (13)Ohio
Albuquerque
(6)Florida vs. (11)California
(3)Baylor vs. (14)Lehigh
Greensboro
(7)Cincinnati vs. (10)Purdue
(2)Duke vs. (15)Loyola Maryland

South Region (Atlanta)
Greensboro
(1)North Carolina vs. (16)UNC-Asheville
(8)Notre Dame vs. (9)Kansas State
Portland
(5)Vanderbilt vs. (12)West Virginia
(4)Wichita State vs. (13)South Dakota State
Louisville
(6)Murray State vs. (11) N.C. State
(3)Marquette vs. (14)St. Bonaventure
Pittsburgh
(2)Ohio State vs. (15)Detroit
(7)Temple vs. (10)Texas

NIT Bound
Drexel
Seton Hall
Iona
Washington
Arizona
Mississippi
Oregon
Northwestern
St. Joseph's
Marshall
Minnesota
Middle Tennessee
Akron

(Leave a comment)

March 2nd, 2012


02:39 am - Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament Scenarios
Seventeen down, one more to go. It's hard to believe the Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament is less than a week away. Everyone in the conference plays this weekend, then the seeds will be set and it's off to Indy where the top teams will look to improve their NCAA seedings, the bubble teams will look to make one more positive impression on the selection committee, and the basement dwellers will try to pull of the greatest Cinderella story that this tournament has ever seen.

Here is a run down of the current seedings:

1. Michigan State (13-4)
2. Michigan (12-5, 1-1 vs. MSU)
3. Ohio State (12-5, 0-1 vs. MSU)
4. Wisconsin (11-6)
5. Indiana (10-7, head-to-head w/ PUR)
6. Purdue (10-7)
7. Iowa (8-9)
8. Northwestern (7-10)
9. Illinois (6-11)
10. Minnesota (5-12)
11. Nebraska (4-13, 1-1 vs. IND & PUR)
12. Penn State (4-13, 1-3 vs. IND & PUR)

If you are curious about how the tiebreakers work, you can just click here or trust me the rest of the way. There are numerous two-way ties that are still possible as well as a couple of potential three-way ties. Let's rundown the possibilities and what it means for various Big Ten schools.

1. Michigan State will be the #1 seed even with a loss to Ohio State on Sunday. Even though that would mean splits with both Ohio State and Michigan, their two wins over Wisconsin will ensure they get the #1 seed in Indianapolis no matter what.

2. Because of their 1-0 record vs. Wisconsin, Michigan holds the tiebreaker over Ohio State at the moment. However, if Purdue beats Indiana and Wisconsin falls to Illinois, the Buckeyes get the tiebreaker. Both the Boilers and Badgers will haved finished tied at 11-7. OSU and UM would be 2-1 vs. 11-7 teams. The tiebreaker will go all the way down to Iowa and give the Buckeyes the tiebreaker because of Michigan's embarrassing 75-59 loss back on January 14 in Iowa City.

3. Ohio State cannot fall below Wisconsin nor a #3 seed because the Badgers' 59-41 loss to Michigan all the way back on January 8 in Ann Arbor. The Buckeyes split their season series with the Wolverines. In turn, Michigan holds the tiebreaker over Wisconsin because of their lone meeting this season.

4. Wisconsin is locked in at the #4 seed. While they can't leapfrog Ohio State, they cannot be passed by either of the schools in Indiana because of their 1-0 records against both schools. On January 12, Wisconsin beat Purdue on the road, 67-62. Then two weeks later, they beat Indiana in Madison, 57-50.

5. If Ohio State and Michigan both lose and Wisconsin wins, there will be a three-way tie for 2nd in the Big Ten. In this scenario, Michigan (2-1) gets the #2 seed, despite a would-be loss to Penn State, Ohio State (2-2) gets the #3 seed, and Wisconsin (1-2), as mentioned before, gets the #4 seed.

6. Indiana and Purdue cannot tie each other in the standings because they play this weekend in Bloomington. The Hoosiers have an 81% chance of winning according to Ken Massey.

7. The winner of the Northwestern-Iowa game will get the #7 seed right behind the loser of the Purdue-Indiana game. Northwestern would hold the tiebreaker based on a season sweep of the Hawkeyes.

8. Despite splits with both Northwestern and Minnesota, Illinois holds the tiebreaker over both with their 1-0 record vs. Michigan State. This guarantees the Illini will play in the 8-9 game on Thursday in Indianapolis and would face Sparty again if they advance to the quarterfinals.

9. If Nebraska spoils Minnesota's senior day, they would hold the tiebreaker over the Gophers. While both teams hold wins over Indiana, Minnesota also holds a loss to the Hoosiers.

10. If Penn State adds to this mess by upsetting Michigan alongside a Huskers win in Minneapolis, then we have a three-way tie at the bottom of the Big Ten. In this case, head-to-head records prevail. Minnesota (2-1) would get the #10 seed, Nebraska (2-2) would get the #11 seed, and Penn State (1-2) would get the #12 seed.

11. Finally, if Nebraska and Penn State both lose as expected, there will be a two-way tie at the bottom of the Big Ten. In this case, the tiebreaker will be decided by the Purdue-Indiana game. If the favored Hoosiers win, Nebraska gets the #11 seed. If the Boilers pull off the upset, then Penn State gets the #11 seed.

Finally, if all the favorites win (this is the Big Ten, are you kidding me?), this is how the bracket will shake out:

Thu, Mar 1:
9-Illinois (6-12) vs. 8-Northwestern (7-11), 11:30AM, BTN
12-Penn State (4-14) vs. 5-Indiana (11-7), 1:55PM, BTN
10-Minnesota (6-12) vs. 7-Iowa (9-9), 5:30PM, ESPN2
11-Nebraska (4-14) vs. 6-Purdue (10-8), 7:55PM, ESPN2

Fri, Mar 2:
NW/ILL vs. 1-Michigan State (14-4), 12:00PM, ESPN
IND/PSU vs. 4-Wisconsin (12-6), 2:25PM, ESPN
IOWA/MINN vs. 2-Michigan (13-5), 6:00PM, BTN
PUR/NEB vs. 3-Ohio State (12-6), 8:25PM, BTN

Sat, Mar 3:
MSU/NW/ILL vs. WIS/IND/PSU, 1:40PM, CBS
MICH/IOWA/MINN vs. OSU/PUR/NEB, 4:05PM, CBS

Sun, Mar 4:
Big Ten Tournament Championship, 3:30PM, CBS

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