BIG 12 OUTLOOK: 03.09.10 (Postseason Awards Edition)



 

BIG 12 OUTLOOK will morph a bit this week. In this edition, I will take a look at the overall predictive performance for the 2010 conference season and hand out my end-of-season awards.

Later in the week, OUTLOOK will project tournament outcomes based on current available information.

There will be a BIG 12 TOURNAMENT OUTLOOK posted every morning of the tournament, which I will try to update with game outcomes and other interesting information throughout the day.

I have all-session tickets for the whole tournament, by the way.

Like last year, I hope the comments section on said entries will function as a live discussion for the BOTC community, much as our game threads do.

Seed Record Tourney* RPI Pomeroy Sagarin Streak Best Win** Worst Loss** Coach
Kansas 1 15-1 NCAA 1 2 1 W-2 Kansas State (x2) Oklahoma State Bill Self
Kansas State 2 11-5 NCAA 6 11 8 L-2 Baylor Iowa State Frank Martin
Baylor 3 11-5 NCAA 8 12 10 W-4 Texas A&M Colorado Scott Drew
Texas A&M 4 11-5 NCAA 12 21 16 W-3 Baylor Washington Mark Turgeon
Missouri 5 10-6 NCAA 36 13 19 L-1 Kansas State Oral Roberts Mike Anderson
Texas 6 9-7 NCAA 27 14 11 L-1 Pittsburgh Oklahoma Rick Barnes
Oklahoma State 7 9-7 NCAA 28 41 34 W-1 Kansas Oklahoma Travis Ford
Colorado 8 6-10 CBI 103 83 88 W-3 Baylor Oregon State Jeff Bzdelik
Texas Tech 9 4-12 NIT 72 89 72 L-7 Oklahoma State Nebraska Pat Knight
Oklahoma 10 4-12 None 108 96 96 L-8 Texas San Diego Jeff Capel
Iowa State 11 4-12 None 113 74 75 W-1 Kansas State Northwestern Greg McDermott
Nebraska 12 2-14 None 155 101 100 L-2 Tulsa Creighton Doc Sadler

Note: As any of these numbers change, I will bold and color-code them to indicate direction of change.
Team names that are colored indicate a change in seed.
(green = upward, red = downward)

*Predicted
**According to RealTimeRPI

 

Self-Evaluation

Thanks to K-State's Senior Night flop, BIG 12 OUTLOOK ended the regular season in predictable and appropriate fashion by going 5-1 yet again.

OUTLOOK successfully predicted the outcomes of 78 out of 96 conference games, which represents a four-game improvement over last season's record, despite what seemed at times to be an even more unpredictable conference season.

Thus, I attained the goal I set exactly one year ago of exceeding 80-percent prediction. My incorporation of RealTimeRPI into the algorithm helped improve last year's 77-percent rate to 81.3 percent, so I'll give this season's effort a B-. I'm shooting for 85 percent next year, though — always strive for excellence.

Much more impressive was this freaky-deaky voodoo. By Feb. 1, my model already had correctly predicted seven of the 12 seeds in the Big 12 Tournament, before the conference season even reached its halfway point.

Just one week later, I nailed three of the top four seeds and — but for a temporary flip-flop of Oklahoma and Texas Tech — would have had nine of 12 seeds correct. That adjustment came five days afterward, when all but seeds 4-6 slid into place.

Two days after that, I suffered a minor setback. Although the top half of the conference came into focus, a temporary slide in Colorado's computer numbers resulted in the Buffaloes falling way down the pecking order and throwing the bottom half into predictive chaos.

But on Feb. 20, OUTLOOK redeemed itself by correctly picking all 12 seeds for the first time. That might not seem impressive, but it's markedly better than last season, when even my final projection was incorrect due to the crazy four-way tie for fourth place.

About the only thing wrong with that 2.5-week-old prediction was an NIT prediction for Oklahoma State, but the Cowboys ripped off three straight wins against Iowa State, Baylor and Kansas that no system had them winning.

I think the proudest accomplishment of this feature in 2010 was that it had no 3-3 weeks. The worst individual performance was 4-2, and that only happened three times. That's way better than the first year I did this.

Final pick record: 78-18 (.813)

 

Postseason Awards: The Botcies

The Big 12 Conference awarded its postseason honors to players and coaches Sunday, as well as selecting its first, second, and third all-conference teams and honorable mentions.

I have fewer disagreements with their selections than I did last year, and although that righteous anger no longer fuels me, I still think this is a worthwhile exercise. So read on to see the winners of the second annual Botcies... (Get it? BOTCies?)

 

Player of the Year

JamesAnderson

James Anderson (Oklahoma State)

Anyone who picks someone else needs to be committed to a mental institution.

 

Defensive Player of the Year

ColeAldrich

Cole Aldrich (Kansas)

The reasons Kansas likely will win its second national championship in three years start and end with this man. No other team in the country has a player to match Aldrich's skill set.

 

Newcomer of the Year

EkpeUdoh

Ekpe Udoh (Baylor)

But as good as Aldrich is, he still finished second to The Nightmare in blocks for the season.

All Ekpe Udoh did was set a new Big 12 season record while elevating Baylor from also-ran to contender.

 

Freshman of the Year

AlecBurks

Alec Burks (Colorado)

Could the biggest shock of the season be Xavier Henry not winning this award?

Because of his early conference season slump, Henry really didn't deserve it.

But if Colorado didn't add Burks and Marcus Relphorde this season, the Buffaloes wouldn't be 6-10 and fighting for an NIT bid.

Without question, Burks impacted his team more than any other Big 12 freshman this season.

 

Sixth Man of the Year

JamarSamuels

Jamar Samuels (Kansas State)

As Cartier Martin first necessitated the creation of this award, so too did Jamar Samuels completely reinvent its meaning.

You see, JamSam is not so much a top reserve as he is a starter who just happens not to technically start the game.

As K-State's fourth-leading scorer and one of its leading rebounders, this was a no-brainer.

 

The Darnell Jackson "Most Improved Senior" Overachievement Award

TweetyCarter

Tweety Carter (Baylor)

The first of my "original" Botcies, this award is named for Darnell Jackson, the Kansas player who didn't do very much until his senior year, when he probably was the best overall post player on a national championship team.

Don't get me wrong — Tweety Carter was pretty good last season.

But he was a grown-ass man this season. I can't count the number of times he did something that simply made my jaw drop.

 

The Aaron Bruce "Most Regressed Senior" Underachievement Award

DexterPittman

Dexter Pittman (Texas)

This award is named for the former Baylor guard who stunned the league as a freshman and basically got worse every season of his career. His senior year was by far his least productive.

Maybe I should rename the award after a Texas post player, because Sexy Dex is the second straight one to win this dubious honor (see a pattern?).

Anyone else remember him going off against North Carolina for 23 and 15, causing Jason King to devolve into paroxysms? Yeah, neither do I.

 

The Joey Graham "Tough Son of a Bitch" Awards

JamesAnderson

James Anderson (Oklahoma State)

One of the indelible images of this season was Anderson battling through cramps, an injured back and God knows what else to help his team upset No. 1 Kansas.

Remember when he threw down that vicious breakaway dunk, but landed with a wince as his back spasmed up on him?

Trust me, the Jayhawks still do.

DonaldSloan

Bryan Davis (Texas A&M)

Davis has a rare combination of mental and physical toughness that makes good players great.

As a post player in the Big 12, he's a bit undersized, but I watched him battle Cole Aldrich for 40 minutes without backing down — hell, Cole might even have blinked a little.

As for mental toughness, the entire Aggies team could hoist this award after watching what happened to Derrick Roland in Seattle, yet still producing a stellar season.

 

Coach of the Year

ScottDrew

Scott Drew (Baylor)

You easily could throw the names of Drew, Frank Martin and Mark Turgeon in a hat, then draw any of them out, and I would agree with the choice.

Since Frank already was honored by the Big 12 (and deservedly so), I thought I'd throw a little love Drew's way — especially after how I savaged him last season.

Baylor was picked 10th and finished tied for second. If that's not COTY material, what is?

Most Underachieving Coach of the Year

JeffCapel

Jeff Capel (Oklahoma)

One. Two. Three.

That's how many McDonald's All-Americans will fail to visit the postseason after Oklahoma's disaster of a 2009-2010 season.

Jeff, you better blow this thing up in the off-season, push Willie Warren off to the NBA where he belongs, and start rebuilding around Tiny Gallon and Tommy Mason-Griffin.

 

All-Big 12 First Team

ColeAldrich JamesAnderson JacobPullen DonaldSloan EkpeUdoh
Cole Aldrich James Anderson Jacob Pullen Donald Sloan Ekpe Udoh
Kansas Oklahoma State Kansas State Texas A&M Baylor

Well, the Player of the Year, the Defensive Player of the Year and the Newcomer of the Year are locks.

That left me needing two guards, and a quick check of the conference statistics showed that the Big 12 correctly identified them as Jacob Pullen and Donald Sloan.

Oh, yes, then they threw out a charity nomination to Sherron Collins, even though his numbers are drastically down this season.

Luckily, the Botcy rules clearly state only one player from a school can be on this team, so I don't have to defend to my decision to omit Collins any further.

But believe me, I could.

 

All-Big 12 Second Team

CraigBrackins TweetyCarter DenisClemente SherronCollins DamionJames
Craig Brackins Tweety Carter Denis Clemente Sherron Collins Damion James
Iowa State Baylor Kansas State Kansas Texas

Craig Brackins and Damion James both will be NBA lottery picks, but I penalized both of them for poor team performance.

Denis Clemente and Sherron Collins both are warriors and leaders with some flaws in their respective games, but they're still integral to their team's success.

The much-improved Carter almost is worthy of first-team status, but Udoh was a little more deserving, I thought.

 

All-Big 12 Third Team

BryanDavis LaceDariusDunn KimEnglish CoryHiggins MarcusMorris
Bryan Davis LaceDarius Dunn Kim English Cory Higgins Marcus Morris
Texas A&M Baylor Missouri Colorado Kansas

Davis, Dunn and Higgins all are integral to their teams' success and merit some form of inclusion, although I certainly left off other deserving players due to lack of space.

Marcus Morris simply was the most improved player in the Big 12 this season, logging a double-double in every conference game until the home stretch, when he admittedly faltered a bit.

I suspect that Kim English was chosen for the Big 12's team when the voters looked at their ballots and realized that they didn't have a single Missouri player anywhere. Although I followed suit, I thoroughly agree with Peter Bean's analysis: Missouri's best "player" is Mike Anderson — and that's why none of the individual players jump out at you.

 

All-Big 12 Defensive Team

ColeAldrich DogusBalbay TerrelHarris JTTiller EkpeUdoh
Cole Aldrich Dogus Balbay Jacob Pullen J.T. Tiller Ekpe Udoh
Kansas Texas Kansas State Missouri Baylor

Nothing too special or original here, I suppose.

Aldrich and Tiller are holdovers from last season.

Udoh deserves inclusion for his blocks record.

This might be the only honor Balbay ever accrues, but he definitely deserves it. The only thing the man can do is defense, after all.

I heartily endorse the inclusion of Pullen on the list, and swapping him for Dominique Sutton presented no problems for me. Dom's defense, as well as other aspects of his game, regressed this season, compared to where he was last year.

 

All-Big 12 Freshman Team

AveryBradley AlecBurks TinyGallon XavierHenry TommyMasonGriffin
Avery Bradley Alec Burks Tiny Gallon Xavier Henry Tommy Mason-Griffin
Texas Colorado Oklahoma Kansas Oklahoma

Botcy policy limits this team to true and redshirt freshmen. These are the future stars of the league, except maybe Henry, who might not be back next season.

Take one Big 12 All-Rookie Team, subtract Ekpe Udoh because he's not a freshman, and replace him with the most promising big man in the conference — mission accomplished.

 

Key

Results are plugged into this wonderful tool to generate the predicted records and seed order. Winners are predicted by a best-of-three system comprising three statistical prediction models:

Predicted Outcomes

01.09
4-1 (.800)
60 Oklahoma
91 Baylor
86 Colorado
103 Texas
68 K-State
74 Missouri
53 Nebraska
64 A&M
52 Tech
81 O-State
01.11-01.13
4-2 (.667)
57 O-State
62 Oklahoma (OT)
71 Baylor
78 Colorado
65 A&M
88 K-State
90 Texas
83 I-State
94 Missouri
89 Tech (OT)
84 Kansas
72 Nebraska
01.16
4-2 (.667)
70 O-State
83 Baylor
87 K-State
81 Colorado
63 Tech
89 Kansas
61 Missouri
66 Oklahoma
56 I-State
53 Nebraska
67 A&M
72 Texas (OT)
01.18-01.20
5-0 (1.000)
62 Texas
71 K-State
62 Oklahoma
65 A&M
78 Colorado
90 O-State
71 I-State
78 Tech
75 Baylor
81 Kansas
01.23
4-1 (.800)
63 Colorado
67 A&M
84 Kansas
61 I-State
73 O-State
69 K-State
53 Nebraska
70 Missouri
65 Oklahoma
75 Tech
01.25-01.27
5-1 (.833)
65 Missouri
84 Kansas
76 K-State
74 Baylor
60 Nebraska
72 Colorado
84 I-State
89 Oklahoma
69 A&M
76 O-State
83 Tech
95 Texas
01.30
5-1 (.833)
63 Colorado
64 I-State
81 Kansas
79 K-State (OT)
80 O-State
95 Missouri
46 Oklahoma
63 Nebraska
70 Tech
85 A&M
80 Baylor
77 Texas (OT)
02.01-02.03
4-1 (.800)
72 Texas
60 O-State
76 K-State
57 Nebraska
72 Kansas
66 Colorado (OT)
63 I-State
84 Baylor
77 A&M
74 Missouri
02.06
4-2 (.667)
84 Missouri
66 Colorado
79 K-State
75 I-State
64 Nebraska
75 Kansas
71 Texas
80 Oklahoma
71 Baylor
78 A&M
74 O-State
81 Tech
02.08-02.10
3-1 (.750)
80 Kansas
68 Texas
72 Tech
71 Oklahoma
56 I-State
65 Missouri
55 Baylor
53 Nebraska
02.13
5-1 (.833)
51 Colorado
68 K-State
59 I-State
73 Kansas
62 Missouri
64 Baylor
51 Nebraska
91 Texas
76 Oklahoma
97 O-State
67 A&M
65 Tech
02.15-02.17
5-1 (.833)
59 Kansas
54 A&M
70 Tech
88 Baylor
67 Oklahoma
77 Colorado
69 O-State
64 I-State
87 Nebraska
91 K-State
77 Texas
82 Missouri
02.20
5-1 (.833)
60 A&M
56 I-State
83 K-State
68 Oklahoma
74 Colorado
94 Kansas
74 Missouri
59 Nebraska
75 Baylor
82 O-State
71 Texas
67 Tech
02.22-02.24
6-0 (1.000)
68 Oklahoma
81 Kansas
83 K-State
64 Tech
66 A&M
70 Baylor
74 Nebraska
78 I-State
63 Colorado
92 Missouri
59 O-State
69 Texas
02.27
5-1 (.833)
72 I-State
75 Colorado
53 Missouri
63 K-State
77 Kansas
85 O-State
79 Tech
83 Nebraska (2OT)
70 Baylor
63 Oklahoma
58 Texas
74 A&M
03.01-03.03
5-1 (.833)
76 Oklahoma
87 Texas
69 Missouri
67 I-State (OT)
81 Colorado
68 Nebraska
86 Baylor
68 Tech
65 K-State
82 Kansas
61 O-State
76 A&M
03.06
5-1 (.833)
77 Texas
92 Baylor
90 Tech
101 Colorado
85 I-State
82 K-State (OT)
77 Kansas
56 Missouri
55 Nebraska
74 O-State
69 A&M
54 Oklahoma

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