Explaining the NCAA Quadrant System

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Buzz Williams Virginia Tech Quadrant System
Making the NCAA Tournament requires some serious calculating, thanks to a new “quadrant” system in place for the selection committee. (Photo by Ivan Morozov)

Last night, in his Clemson game recap, Ricky LaBlue wrote, “Defeating Clemson gives Tech another Quadrant One victory.”

Sounds good, but what does that mean?  We’ll explain.

This season, in evaluating teams for NCAA Tournament inclusion and seeding, one of the metrics the NCAA Selection Committee will use is the “quadrant” records of each team.

In the past, the Committee used to look at each team’s record against the RPI top-25, the RPI top-50, the RPI top-100, etc., and losses to teams ranked RPI 100-200, RPI 200-plus, etc. That’s not a full list, but that’s how they used to break it down.

Now the committee is looking at each team’s record in four “quadrants,” and here’s how those quadrants break down:

  • Quadrant 1: Home games vs. teams RPI ranked 1-30, neutral games vs. 1-50, away games vs. 1-75
  • Quadrant 2: Home 31-75, neutral 51-100, away 76-135
  • Quadrant 3: Home 76-160, neutral 101-200, away 136-240
  • Quadrant 4: Home 161-plus, neutral 201-plus, away 241-plus

Clearly, a good record in Quadrant 1 games is important, and Quadrant 2 is important as well. Losses in Quadrant 4 games are bad, as is a schedule that features too many Quadrant 4 games.

It’s a good update to the system because under the old system, a home win against a team with, say, an RPI rank of 50 was treated the same as a road win against an RPI No. 50 team. In the new system, beating RPI 50 at home is only a Quadrant 2 win, but on the road, it’s a Quadrant 1 win. That makes more sense than the old system, because a road win should be more important than a home win.

Here’s the Hokies’ Quadrant breakdown after last night’s win, via @OX_VT on Twitter.

Virginia Tech Quadrant Records
(Infographic via @OX_VT on Twitter — click to enlarge)

Interested in how Virginia Tech measures up to the rest of the nation? To see how the Hokies stack up against all other Division 1 teams (351 of them) in Quadrant records (through games of Feb. 20, not including last night’s win), click here. To see every school’s “team sheet,” including all kinds of metrics, click here.

The bottom line is that with Wednesday’s Clemson win, the Hokies have five Q1 wins, which is a very competitive number, and no Q4 losses, which is good (but a relatively high number of Q4 games, which is not good).

Virginia Tech has three more regular season games left (all RPIs via RealTimeRPI.com as of 10 AM Feb. 22nd):

  • RPI No. 52 Louisville at home (Q2)
  • RPI No. 4 Duke at home (Q1)
  • RPI No. 31 Miami on the road (Q1)

And of course, Virginia Tech will have a game (or games) at the ACC Tournament as well. 

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4 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Iowa was a decent to good team last year. Beating them early this year made us all feel good. Nobody would have thought beating them would only be a Quad 4 win.

    1. Its only 6 spots away from being a Q3 game. Hopefully they can do it. Not that a Q3 win is big, but at least it decreases our number of Q4 games.

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