Wahine No. 17 in RPI

Very odd, IMHO.


Hawaii at 17 this week. Hard to figure out how they dropped 6 spots with 2 wins, albeit wins over mediocre teams.

So …. obviously the committee took other things into account.

Most obvious is Illinois getting seeded with an RPI of 20. blantant that they protected the Illini who are regional hosts.

Illinois & Hawaii the only seeded teams not in the Top 16 of RPI.

The two teams in the Top 16 that didn’t get seeded: Marquette at No. 8 & Creighton at No. 16.


  1. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 6:55 am

    RPI vs. tourney seeding
    1. Penn State.seeded 2
    2. Texas seeded 1
    3. Florida seeded 5
    4. Missouri. seeded 4
    5. Washington seeded 3 final four host
    6. Stanford. seeded 7
    7. USC seeded 6 regional host
    8. Marquette. unseeded
    9. Nebraska seeded 8 regional host
    10. Kentucky seeded 15 regional host
    11 Minnesota. seeded 10
    12. Duke. seeded 16
    13. Kansas seeded 14
    14. San Diego. seeded 9
    15. Wisconsin seeded 12.
    16. Creighton unseeded
    17. Hawaii seeded 11
    20. Illinois seeded 13 regional host

  2. Ron December 2, 2013 7:04 am

    I think we dodged the bullet and I think your conclusions answer as to why this occurred. Normally, would have used this rating against us but it was convenient to let us host.

  3. ifo manoa December 2, 2013 7:04 am

    cindy, looks like the selection committee went with the list prior to the monday Dec 2, 2013 update
    IMHO. otherwise this remains somewhat of a mystery given what we’ve been told regarding the
    new selection criterion(s).

  4. ifo manoa December 2, 2013 7:10 am

    not sure about creighton but marquette’s out of conference record with top 25 teams was A factor against them.

  5. Butch December 2, 2013 7:14 am

    They probably gave UH a seed because they wanted to give Illinois a seed and would look stupid giving a 20 rpi team a seed without giving a UH team of 17 rpi team no seed.

  6. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 7:16 am

    2. agree about the convenience given the number of ‘west coast’ teams. 9 Pac-12 teams 3 from the BWC, 2 WCC. almost a quarter of the field
    3. i think they took other things into account outside of the RPI, such as the coaches poll as well as geography.
    Looks like they did a better job about not sending teams across country, as happened a number of times when Hawaii got sent to Florida, Louisville, in Penn State regional
    Hawaii with 4 west teams feeds into USC
    San Diego subregional with 4 west teams … feeds into Nebraska
    some exceptions: unseeded Cal at Florida subregional, New Hampshire to USC, Hampton to Stanford

  7. ifo manoa December 2, 2013 7:21 am

    actually confirms a few knowledgeable skeptics about us being on the ‘bubble’. i feel we lucked out
    a bit this year versus last year.

  8. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 7:21 am

    4. think Hawaii’s win over Creighton a factor.
    As for Marquette, they got the AQ by beating Creighton in their tourney. they went 1-1 against the Bluejays during the regular season. No signature wins. played a very regional schedule except for:
    BYU Lost 3-2, USC Lost 3-0, Penn State Lost 3-0. Florida L 3-0

  9. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 7:25 am

    5. Thought that as well.

  10. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 7:32 am

    Illinois 16-14 overall, 12-8 conference
    in last 12 8-4. wins over then-Top 25 teams Wisconsin, MIchigan, Michigan State, Purdue
    4 losses at Northwestern in 5, swept at Nebraska, 1-3 at Penn State, swept by Minnesota at home

  11. Warrior Dave December 2, 2013 7:33 am

    Finally! Wahine gets a break and host after being screwed time after time.

    The NCAA will get a huge payday for their actions as I suspect Hawaii fans will respond and attendance will be at least 8,500 – 9,000 on Friday night and higher for Saturday when the Wahine win.

  12. Warrior Dave December 2, 2013 7:35 am

    Cindy, if USC should lose in the opening round, will the second round still be held in LA?

  13. Maverick December 2, 2013 7:36 am

    It’s really not difficult to fathom UH’s drop. UH’s opponents’ total w-l record this past weekend, after games played, was 13-43, or .232. Fullerton and Riverside are not mediocre, they are the two worst teams in the conference by far. This low winning percentage more than offset the benefit UH got from its two wins. It’s just the math of RPI. Not shocking at all. I predicted the drop a couple of weeks ago, which was a similar drop after UH played them the first time around.

    I believe UH benefited from a 3-1 record against top 25 RPI and 6-2 against top 50 RPI, better than Creighton, Kansas and Marquette’s records. On head-to-head, UH’s win over Creighton favored UH to get a seed (I shudder to think where UH would be had they lost the five set match to Creighton). Plus, the win against Texas played a role. San Diego also benefitted from a strong pre-conference performance. I think the moral here is that you not only must play strong opponents, but you also have to beat them.

    I also think that the AVCA poll was used, in addition to other polls. Would help explain seeds for both UH and USD.

    The unfortunate part of all this is the blatant protection of Illinois as a regional host. Illinois seed was clearly undeserved. No logical way to justify other than host protection.

    At the end of the day, as far as UH is concerned, I believe the seeding committee fairly considered UH’s body of work, rather than using only the RPI. Still not a perfect outcome for all seedings, but better than what I’ve seen in the recent past.

  14. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 7:39 am

    win or lose, the host remains the same for first-second rounds.
    11. people seem to forget that UH hosted subregional 2 years ago, as well as the regional. However, even 2011 was a a joke. subregional with 4 conference champs. regional with USC & Pepperdine. Even ESPN announcers said that Hawaii-USC and USC-Pepperdine were final four worthy matches.
    but agree that UH has historically been jobbed.
    BTW, the NCAA could care less about making money. otherwise Hawaii would normally host.

  15. ifo manoa December 2, 2013 7:43 am

    13. Ahhh… the knowledgeable skeptic comes forth….. LoL

  16. Maverick December 2, 2013 7:44 am

    15. Doing my best given seeding decisions are a black box to the public.

  17. Maverick December 2, 2013 8:03 am

    5 and 9. Seems a little far fetched to me given the stats in post #13 above. So I looked at McGinn’s RPI estimate to review other teams’ records against top 25/top 50 rpi competition. Based on this, UH has the best record of any team ranked between itself and the #50 RPI team. The team with the next best record in that group is Florida State.

    Had UH received the seed but did not perform as well against the top 25/top 50, your view may be valid. But the numbers suggest that UH got the seed on its own merits and its body of work.

    It seems that the complaints of RPI-only/RPI-dominant weighting for seedings has finally caused the NCAA to make changes to its seeding criteria, which this year’s committee took to heart. I believe they used other polls/rankings to make the final seeding decisions, with the one exception of Illinois.

    That being said, if UH fails to win out this weekend, then this is all moot. But fun to speculate and discuss in the mean time.

  18. Andrew December 2, 2013 9:24 am

    I’m looking forward to the Wahine hopefully getting a chance to avenge two prior post season losses against USC and Washington. That match against USC couple years ago in the regionals was probably one of the most intense matches I’ve seen. You could pretty much feel it in the arena. I think if they continue their current improvement in play, they can go far. Latley Olevao and Taylor have improved their play and have given Hartong that much needed help.

  19. Andrew December 2, 2013 9:35 am

    Cindy, have you had a chance to see any games with any of the teams in UHs bracket?

  20. Dan-O December 2, 2013 9:37 am

    One match at a time…..let’s get victories in the first two rounds before even THINKING about rematches with USC and UW.

  21. Andrew December 2, 2013 9:42 am

    I agree but that’s why I said hopefully. Luckily as a fan, it’s ok to look ahead to possible future matches.

  22. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 9:49 am

    19. some in passing, not complete matches

  23. mario December 2, 2013 10:06 am

    Agree with #11 that NCAA should reward teams with great attendance. What does volleyball game means if there are no people watching the game. Its good for the sport also. About time to give UH a break after all the years of unfair seeding.

  24. Warriorfan December 2, 2013 10:35 am

    I hope UH is able to duplicate this next season, what got UH over the hump was that win over Texas and those two key wins on the road against Creighton and Wichita. Hope UH goes on the road there again and schedules PSU to replace Texas, Hopefully UCLA will get better next season to help the rip more but I doubt it.

  25. Maverick December 2, 2013 10:37 am

    24. I agree on going on the road in the pre-conference season. UH will benefit from that from performance and perhaps seeding perspectives. I’d rather the team not wait until the post-season to play a top team on the mainland.

  26. Cindy Luis December 2, 2013 10:39 am

    24. Don’t know how tough UH can schedule next year. there’s a couple of new conference ‘challenges’ during the preseason which may make it hard to get the very top teams. But Shoji will schedule as tough as he can. Not all about who Hawaii wants, it’s also about who wants to play Hawaii.

  27. Cubicle1126 December 2, 2013 11:02 am

    i’m not one to believe in “conspiracy theories” or that the ncaa is out to get hawaii. hawaii ended the season with a 17 rpi, and got seeded 11. it could just be that hawaii earned it! i’m inclined to believe that than anything else. (although, at the end of the day, i have no inside info on how the committee conducts its deliberations.)

    it’s a funny contrast, right? hawaii was 17 in rpi last year and was denied a seed. hawaii is 17 this year, and gets an 11 seed.

    i’ll echo what maverick said above, and what some other folks have been saying on here and on VTalk all along. if hawaii ended the season in any kind of contention for a seed, the nitty gritty of their record this year, i.e. being 3-1 against top 25 rpi teams, and 6-2 against the top 50, was enough to earn them a seed. maybe geography was also involved in shuffling the seeds around, i don’t know. but “3-1” and “6-2” … those right there were the magic numbers that likely went a long way to getting hawaii seeded, imho.

    compare this year to last year. hawaii also ended the season as the #17 rpi team. the nitty gritty of their schedule last year was not impressive. they were 1-2 against the rpi top 25, and 3-3 against the rpi top 50. just a couple wins difference in the win column, but it stands in stark contrast, doesn’t it?

  28. Maverick December 2, 2013 11:12 am

    27. I’m glad you brought that up. I thought UH’s record against top 25/50 last year was unremarkable. I guess you gotta play the good teams and win.

  29. jake December 2, 2013 11:37 am

    18-19, per your question, i’ve watched AZ state (PAC12) and BYU (BYUTV). Both are big/strong and can put up a good block.
    BYU was impressive in their three set sweep of USD on their home court and just lost out on the conf title when USD beat them in 5 sets in SD. AZ state can be crazy good but their PAC 12 record does’nt show that. They are huge at the net and although early in the season, they accounted for the only other loss Texas incurred. AZ state lost in five to Illinois but swept Texas in three sets in Champaign, Ill in mid Sept. makes for an
    interesting first and hopefully second round.

  30. OrbitalRipZ December 2, 2013 1:44 pm

    Re: 13: Nothing you said answers “It’s really not difficult to fathom UH’s drop” from RPI #11 to RPI #17 in one week. UH’s non-conf. opponents total W-L record from Nov. 25 (date of last RPI) to Nov. 30 (last matches played) was 9-9. UH’s conf. opponents total W-L record from Nov. 25 to Nov. 30 was 5-7. Total: 14W – 16L.

    Granted that UH played against the bottom dwellers UC Irvine Riverside AND Cal St Fullerton the same weekend hurt, but that by itself doesn’t explain that huge drop. “Not shocking at all. I predicted the drop a couple of weeks ago, which was a similar drop after UH played them the first time around.” UH played Fullerton on Sept. 27 and Riverside on Sept. 29. At that time the NCAA did not release its first RPI yet. When the first NCAA came out in the first week of October, UH was ranked #3 — its highest RPI ever!

    The rest of what you say has nothing to do with explaining the “not difficult to fanthom drop” from #11 to #17 in one week; e.g. ” AVCA poll was used, in addition to other polls.” The AVCA Poll has nothing to do with NCAA RPI or explaining UH’s drop in the RPI from #11 to #17.

    I want to explain why I mentioned ILLINOIS from early on when it had a overall W-L record below .500 and why I posted on this blog way before Selection Sunday that Illinois would host a subregonal, but I think Cindy answered that question already.

    Anyway, if I were Marquette, I would be pissed. Still think they deserve to host over Duke. Main thing is for the Big West teams to play LIGHTS OUT and do not embarrass the Volleyball [Selection] Committee, which put its ass on the line in sending an amazing 3 BWC teams to The Dance.

  31. Cubicle1126 December 2, 2013 2:16 pm

    orbital — you’re only factoring in how hawaii’s non-conference and conference opponents did last week (which, as you say, was 14-16).

    but since hawaii played uc riverside and cal state fullerton, then their win/loss records (1-15, and 11-17, respectively) gets factored in to hawaii’s rpi formula. factoring in that many more losses helps to explain the drop in hawaii’s rpi in one week.

  32. Cubicle1126 December 2, 2013 2:20 pm

    orbital — also as for seeding duke over marquette … duke was 4-3 against the rpi top 25, while marquette was 2-4. if i were on the committee, i would have seeded duke over marquette too.

  33. Maverick December 2, 2013 3:36 pm

    30. Nonsensical. You need to add in Fullerton and riverside’s overall record in the rpi calc to perform the marginal analysis.

    And th rest of the post addressed other points.

  34. Maverick December 2, 2013 3:38 pm

    30. The rpi drop I mentioned may have been mcginn’s estimate so I stand corrected. Still not difficult to fathom the drop.

  35. Maverick December 2, 2013 5:44 pm

    30. Btw, to what do you attribute Hawaii’s drop in the last RPI rankings, if not playing the worst two teams in the conference and having an opponent w-l total from last weekend of 27-57 (.321), including the w-l records of the two teams Hawaii played (and which are incorporated again in UH’s RPI)? Note that prior to that weekend, Hawaii’s opponents’ w-l record was above .500, and about .550 or so. That component value of RPI was going to fall after last weekend’s results. You make a claim that playing the weak teams was not the only reason (and I never said it was), but you don’t actually explain logically what you think the other reasons are.

    Playing teams with terrible w-l records impacts a team’s RPI negatively, which could translate into a fall in the RPI ranking depending on what other teams do. The previous week, UH played Northridge and Davis which had better winning percentages than Fullerton and Irvine, and UH still fell in the RPI rankings.

    Absent a logical, data-based alternative, I am very confident that the drop was mostly related to playing weak BWC teams, with other factors having a significantly smaller impact (such as how other teams near UH’s RPI performed). But I welcome your informed view.

  36. Maverick December 2, 2013 5:53 pm

    31. Cubicle, didn’t see your post. Glad you understand how RPI works.

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