Wednesday, October 15, 2008

NCAA Tourney: more regional Regionals

So, it looks like the NCAA is planning on making the NCAA Regionals more of actual regional affairs -- rather than maintaining bracket integrity and avoiding 1st-round intra-conference matchups, the NCAA is looking at putting teams closer to home.

Sure, it'd likely boost attendance at games, as teams' fan bases would be closer to the event, and of I'm all in favor of that. And sure, it'd decrease teams' travel costs.

But I don't like it. I wasn't thrilled last year with having Wisconsin, Denver, and North Dakota at the same regional -- I'd watched Denver and North Dakota all season, and I wanted to see some teams from other conferences, especially eastern teams. I also don't like the idea that, if one conference is particularly strong, that several of the top teams could end up in the same conference, facing each other in the 1st round. (By the way, I'd feel like regardless of which conference is stronger, so this isn't Western Bias. And yes, I understand that the top 4 teams are still placed in separate regionals.)

Of course, what I think doesn't really matter. And looking back into the past, I believe the NCAA tourney was set up at one point so that the top Eastern team would meet the top Western team in the championship game. So, I guess it's all right, and I suppose I might as well get over it since there's nothing I can do about it.

The WCHA is responding to the NCAA's plans.