The excitement of the women’s basketball tournament looms in the air and the race for the tournament heats up as March 1 approaches.
The 2001 Mountain Dew SoCon tournament tips off in Greenville, SC, next week. As the regular season wraps up, the seeds begin to fall into place. However, there are only four definites in the seedings while the other six depend on games this week.
Chattanooga and Georgia Southern remain tied at the top of the standings and hold their breath to see who will earn the top seed in bracket. Chattanooga can lock up the number one seed with a win at Wofford on February 24 as it has the advantage in a tiebreaker with a two-game sweep over UNCG. The only way Georgia Southern could become the top seed would be for Chattanooga to lose and the Lady Eagles to beat Davidson. However, if they finish the regular season tied, the Lady Mocs would hold the #1 spot.
With a 13-4 record going into the weekend, UNCG is locked in as the third seed in the tournament. If UNCG were to finish the season tied with Chattanooga and Georgia Southern, UTC and GSU hold the tiebreakers as Chattanooga swept UNCG and Georgia Southern has one win over the Lady Mocs.
Furman will be the fourth seed and hosts East Tennessee State on February 26 in the final game of the season.
More uncertainties invade the seeding procedure for seeds five through eight. If College of Charleston, East Tennessee State, Western Carolina and Wofford end the season tied at 7-11, the tie would be broken starting with head-to-head records. WCU has the best record in the foursome and would be the fifth seed. The tie would then go head-to-head with the three other teams with College of Charleston (3-1) winning the tie and taking the sixth seed. Coming down the stretch would be East Tennessee State and Wofford with ETSU capturing the seventh seed with Wofford eighth. ETSU holds the advantage in the breaker with its win over UNCG. If CofC and ETSU both end the season at 8-10, Charleston would take the five-spot with a win over Chattanooga.
If Charleston ends the season fifth and ETSU, WCU and Wofford finish tied, ETSU would win the three-way tie with its win over UNCG. Western and Wofford would then break the tie with WCU taking the breaker with a sweep over Charleston and Wofford would remain eighth.
Davidson and Appalachian State round out the final seeds. If the two teams finish the season tied, Davidson has the advantage after sweeping App State in the regular season.
The seeds are based on the final regular season conference record. The SoCon’s first tiebreaker procedure is how the teams fared in head to head competition. If that fails to break the tie, the next formula compares the tied teams against the highest seeded team in the conference not invloved in the tie. For instance, if two teams tie for second and they split the regular season series, the next step is to compare how each team fared against the top seed. If that does not break the tie, it continues down through the standings until the tie is broken. If each team had the same wins and losses against the same opponents, the conference office will conduct a coin toss to determine the higher seeded team.
In the case of a three-way tie, the first consideration is each team’s record against the other two teams involved in the tie. If that does not create a clear winner, then each teams’ record against the highest seeded team not involved in the tie would come into play. Once a clear winner is determined, the tie goes back to head-to-head competition and repeats the same procedure. However, if there is not a clear winner between the three teams, the conference office will conduct a blind draw to determine the seedings.