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Date Posted: 14:15:49 12/27/08 Sat
This year's schedule reminds me more of the Sweet 16 year, than last year. Last year had a "good loss" to Ohio State, and wins over Utah and Nebraska, #30 and #33, respectively. They also defeated #75 Fairfield twice. Also, even thought they looked bad in losing to Hartford, the Hawks finished the year with an RPI of 44. Don't see the opportunity in what's left on this year's slate. East Carolina is at 108 and Hartford is at 48, after that it's the MAAC and while Iona and Loyola have sub-100 RPI's I don't see both staying in that range, especially Loyola, since there best win is a 4 pointer vs. #136 Md-Baltimore County.
To me the 8-9 assumes just about perfection from here on out. The MAAC RPI is at 16 now, and being carried currently by Marist, Loyola, Iona and Canisius (104), and I think it will drop when the majority of the teams begin beating up on each other.
Given the numbers, future schedule and lack of poll recognition, its likely to play out as an typical year for the MAAC when the path to the NCAA tournament requires a MAAC Tournament Championship.
Still a feast for Marist Fans any way you want to look at the situation.