Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Latest RPI numbers in the Mountain West

The latest Ratings Percentage Index was unveiled Monday and there weren't many changes.

San Diego State and Fresno State led the way as they have all season.  The Aztecs came in at No. 45 (after being 42nd the previous week).  The RPI release was, however, only thru games of April 27.  San Diego State's Tuesday loss to the University of San Diego (No. 110 in the RPI) won't be reflected until next week, which is a concern for a team that may have to rely on an at-large NCAA bid.

Fresno State came in at No. 57 (down a spot from 56th a week ago).  The Bulldogs are clearly in bubble territory when it comes to the NCAA Tournament, and in the outer edges of the bubble at best.  Fresno State can only feel secure if it wins the Mountain West title.  The one thing the Bulldogs do have going for them is this:  If they are still in the at-large discussion at the end when the NCAA selection committee is deciding things, they have three significant wins -- over RPI Top 25 foes Washington and Nebraska, and No. 30 North Carolina State.  Few bubble teams have those sorts of non-conference wins -- all away from home.

Colorado State came in at No. 79 this week, down three spots from 76th in the previous RPI release.  Boise State comes in at No. 82, a three spot rise in a week's time.  San Jose State (85th) and UNLV (86th) come in back to back in the RPI.  The Rebels, who took two of three from San Diego State, made a healthy late-season rise of 11 spots in a week thanks to that series win over the Aztecs.

With six teams in the RPI Top 86, the Mountain West is in elite company.  The only other conferences with six or more teams among the top 86 of the RPI are the Pac-12, SEC, Big 12 and Big Ten.

Rounding out the RPI are Nevada (No. 149), Utah State (No. 169) and New Mexico (No. 170).