Ready for a quick resume comparison? I know I am. You probably know which teams these are, but I'll keep it secret to the end.
|Team A||Team B|
|Bracket Matrix Seeding||5 seed||Unseeded|
Okay, so team A has a slightly better record, though negligibly so. Team B is significantly better on the road. Team A is better against better competition (top 100) but it's worth noting that Team B hasn't lost to a 50-100 team while Team A did.
The strength of schedule is comparable. One team is better in conference. Neither have any losses in the 100+ category, though it's likely one will by the end of the year.
The RPI is basically identical.
One team, however, is not only in every single bracket, but is a composite 5 seed. Team B? Not seeded compositely. Should Team A enjoy an advantage? Yes, the Top 100 record provided that. But the conference record and road record lessens it, and RPI makes it even less. One should fall or the other should rise; probably both.
Now, bracketology isn't all statistical. There is, as with everything else, a human element. But is the human element a little unfair? Maybe.
If you hadn't figured it out yet: Team A is UNC, Team B is Maryland.
UNC will get in because they're UNC and unless they absolutely bomb they'll be in the top half and return to title contention before long. I'm not saying there's a bias against Maryland - UNC has the name recognition - but it's fairly shocking, no?
Maybe some brackets haven't updated since UNC's two most recent losses. Okay. But you'd still expect them to be lower than 5. SBN's own Dobber put them at 6 (nothing against Dobber, he's awesome). Lunardi has them at 6 as well.
UNC will likely be better by the end of the year, but when you compare the statistical difference and the seeding difference, it really illustrates what we already knew: UNC has the name advantage and Maryland has an uphill battle to climb. But at some point someone has to actually watch these games, right?
Quick disclaimer: this is just a discussion piece. It's still too early for bracketology to mean anything anyway, and yes, we already knew that UNC and a certain other Tobacco Road team get media biases.