I saw this first in the Ann Arbor News, then got the direct quote from The Washington Post. Pundit and writer John Feinstein is pretty sick of the talk of the Big Ten getting 7 or 8 bids:

“If the Big Ten gets eight bids, the selection committee should be disbanded,” the Washington Post’s John Feinstein told me Thursday. “The committee should be ashamed of itself if the Big Ten gets eight. The Big Ten deserve two bids.”

Strong words. Granted the whole thing is a bit of a house of cards as two-thirds of the season is played against one’s own conference, but certainly there’s enough data (including head-to-head) to compare these teams and the strength of the conferences. Two teams from the Big Ten?

Take one of the last few Big Ten teams that’ll likely get in–Michigan. Throw out the conference record as Feinstein might do. Losses at Maryland (barely), at Connecticut (barely) and in New York against Duke. Wins in the rematch with Duke and on the road against UCLA. Minnesota, a team probably slotted below Michigan, beat likely #1 seed Louisville. How has the Big Ten not demonstrated its worthiness? Is he pinning this on Michigan State’s struggle at the Palace Ford Field against North Carolina?

If I’m Feinstein, I’d direct my guns at the idea of a single conference getting three #1 seeds.

13 Comments

  1. Michigan State’s struggle at Ford Field against North Carolina, no?

    Actually, I think the issue is the Big Ten’s showing, or lack there of against the ACC in the Challenge which always hurts the perception of the Big Ten nationally.

  2. Greg (MVictors)

    Ford Field, of course, thanks. OK, so the Big Ten has sucked in the ACC Challenge over the years, but previous years obviously don’t matter. It was ACC 6, Big Ten 5 this year, including Michigan’s tight loss to Maryland. I guess I’d like to see Feinstein’s bracket.

  3. Right…that always drives me nuts about vitale as he bitches about who got left out of the tourney….ok dick, who would you remove to put those teams in?

  4. As a green-bleeding Spartan fan, I believe that Michigan has earned their NCAA ticket and will further prove themselves in the tourney. I’ll be watching the lines closely at the Mirage. ‘Nuff Said’ – The late great Frank Catton

  5. Hold on tight… with all the conference tourney upsets and bubble teams doing well, Michigan is not a lock for a bid!

  6. Count me as one of the Michigan locks. Wins over Duke, UCLA, Purdue, Illinois, and sweeps of bubble teams Minn and Penn State, #11 schedule strength and only one marginally bad loss (at Iowa) = BID. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 7, 8 or 9 seed.

  7. It is the communist country of ESPN that everyone hates the Big Ten. If they could have it their way the would just have the ACC and Big East conference teams in the Dance. Dicky V would be the only commentator, all the games on ESPN and only N. Carolina or Duke would be the winner of the tourney. Michigan State beat Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma State….Purdue beat Davidson and lost to Oklahoma by five….Illnois beat Missouri by 15….Michigan beat the likes of Duke, UCLA, lost barely at Uconn and Minnesota beat a number one seed in Louisville who won the Big East conference and the conference tourney! That speaks for itself. Shut up Fatstein!

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  9. Sounds like some snobby NE looking down his nose at the rest of the country. Go screw!

  10. the censors here are pansies.

  11. It’s a secondhand quote. Still, Feinstein is a d-bag in general. So let’s see… a very large committee of what, tens of people, pore over data from 340-odd D-1 teams and deem the BT worthy of seven bids.

    Yet they’re wrong. Actually, we only deserve four or five (two is obviously hyperbolic.) Hmmmm… Mayland won the title in what, ’02, and hasn’t been seen in the tourney since. Wake easily goes out this year on the first weekend. Duke doesn’t make it past 16. Only UNC from the ACC has a shot at the FF. So do MSU and Purdue. Advantage us. End of story.

    Feinstein repairs to more fruitful and incisive analysis, such as his critiques of US foreign policy. lol. And fellating fellow alum Tommy Amaker. You can’t concoct rubbish like this.

  12. Despite MSU’s terrible performance, the ACC only “won” the Big Ten/ACC Challenge 6-5.

    Feinstien should stick to what he knows best: writing melodramatic books about sports.

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  14. It’s obvious John Feistein did’t do his homework when criticizing the Big Ten. The Big Ten’s non-conference record/schedule speaks for itself. They played anybody and everybody. I am a Big Ten fan and want them to do well. I also understand that good basketball is played in all conferences across the country. For him to pick on an Illinois team for scoring in the low 30’s one game shows his lack of basketball IQ. The Illini definitely are offensively challenged at times but they also took the Missouri tigers behind the woodshed in the regular season. I live in ACC country and believe that most of their fans have tunnel vision when it comes to other conferences. Not to pick on the ACC because they definitely play good basketball. But so does the rest of the country. The Big Ten has performed about as expected in this tourney. We were not considered a juggernaut as we’ve only had a couple of teams (Purdue, Michigan St) ranked high all year. I absolutely believe this is the most competitive it’s been in the last 5 hrs. I also believe the best is yet to come. With the influx of new coaches (Crean, Painter, Tubby, Lickliter) it’s only going to get better. Big Ten fans should just lay back and enjoy the ride
    Why do we care what Feinstein thinks anyways….? it’s obvious that he’s never played the game…..he should stick to writing……I really did enjoy “A Season on the Brink”……