FGCU Women deserve a low seed in NCAA
As the old adage goes, the third time’s the charm.
With the Florida Gulf Coast women winning its third Atlantic Sun championship in four years defeating Northern Kentucky 60-43, it’s time for the NCAA to give them the respect they deserve and seed them right. Most of the bracketologists, the name given to those who predict brackets for the NCAA tournament, have FGCU anywhere from an eight seed to a 10 seed.
You’re probably thinking, “Wait, isn’t that good, Justin? We were a 12-seed the last two times we made the tournament.”
No, it’s not good and here’s why.
The FGCU women set a FGCU and A-Sun record for 30 wins in a season this year (they are 30-2 overall). They have an official Ratings Percentage Index under 15 and went 7-1 against the top-50 RPI teams this year. They also went a perfect 14-0 in A-Sun play.
Also the problem with being an eight or a nine seed would mean that they would, with a win, have to play a one-seed on their home court. That would be no good for FGCU as the one-seeds are hard enough to beat, let alone on their home court.
They won the three games they played in the A-Sun women’s basketball championship by an average of 25 points and they haven’t lost a game since November 29. That was a seven-point loss to Ohio State on a neutral site in the Virgin Islands.
Even their opponents believe the Eagles can make a run in this year’s tournament.
“They really lock you down and they really defend,” Northern Kentucky head coach Dawn Plitzuweit said. “I can see them make a run because they are good on both sides of the basketball.”
Unfortunately for FGCU, there is nothing they can do now to boost their resume. They will have to wait until today at 7 p.m. on ESPN to learn where they will be playing.
“I’ve never been in the selection room so I don’t know how it breaks down,” FGCU head coach Karl Smesko said. “I know though for a mid-major it’s hard to get top-100 games and top-50 games because not that many teams want to play you. We were fortunate it enough to play a lot of teams in the top-100, teams in the top-50, teams in the top-25 of the RPI so usually if you’re going to slide down it’s because you don’t have a good record against those top teams and that’s not the case with us. It would be hard to move us too far back.”
Coach Smesko hit the nail right on the head. FGCU by no means deserves to be lower than a seven seed. They have the resume. They’ve passed the eye tests. And best of all they just know how to win. Now we get to wait and see where the selection committee will place us and to hope that the third time is really the charm.