Final Four Teams are Road Warriors

I’ve found the best way to identify NCAA Tournament Final Four contenders is by process of elimination. One of the best criteria we can use to eliminate pretenders is a team’s record away from home. Teams that reach the Final Four have at least a 0.500 record (road + neutral site) entering the NCAA Tournament. There are only two outliers in the last 80 Final Four teams, and they simply lucked into their historic runs. There are additional factors and stats that I’ll use to narrow our list of contenders further, but that will come after the conference tournaments are done (stay tuned).

How are 2024’s Teams Shaping Up?

Here’s a quick look at today’s NET top 32 teams. Green teams are good to go. Yellow teams are on the cusp and the next week and a half will be crucial to pick up much needed road/neutral wins. Red teams go in the pretender pile. Twenty of the top 32 teams are good to go – at least in terms of their record away from home. I’ll identify other flaws later.

Teams to Keep an Eye On

Nine teams have some work to do to stay above or get over the threshold. The Big 12 Tournament will be critical to five of them.

  • Alabama – Needs to win at least 2 games in the SEC Tournament
  • Iowa State – Win at Kansas State, and they’re good to go. Otherwise, they’ll need to win at least 2 games in the Big 12 Tournament.
  • BYU – Win at least 2 games in the Big 12 Tournament
  • Baylor – Win at Texas Tech, and they’re good. Otherwise, they’ll need to win at least 1 Big 12 Tournament game.
  • Kansas – Win at Houston (tall order) and win at least 1 Big 12 Tournament game. Lose at Houston, and they’ll need to win the Big 12 Tournament or reach the championship game if they drop to a 5 seed or lower.
  • San Diego State – Win at least 1 game in the MWC Tournament
  • Texas – Win at least 2 games in the Big 12 Tournament
  • Florida – Beat Vandy and win at least 1 game in the SEC Tournament
  • Villanova – Win at least 3 games in the Big East Tournament

Red, But Not Technically Dead

Wisconsin and Michigan State are in bad shape, but miracles happen. They can technically still dig themselves out of their respective holes and get over the mark.

Wisconsin, after inevitably losing at Purdue on Sunday, will have to win the Big Ten Tournament. Michigan State must win at Indiana on Sunday and then win the Big Ten Tournament.

4 responses to “Final Four Teams are Road Warriors”

  1. Batto Avatar

    Auburn is 5-0 vs Quad 2 Away/Neutral, and 0-6 vs Quad 1 A/N… woof woof

    1. BracketNinja Avatar

      Tell me about it! They have fantastic stats and metrics – all except that Q1 record. Blech…

    2. Jbone315 Avatar

      Took South Carolina’s manhood today

      1. BracketNinja Avatar

        Yeah they did! Irony is that the beatdown was so bad, South Carolina could drop below 50 in the NET, and it will only be another Q2 win. If they let SC keep it close, it would def be a Q1 win. For seeding, it shouldn’t matter on Sunday, anyway. Just funny.