Finally, we know the 65 teams in the tournament and we can begin filling out our brackets. A tool I'll be using to fill out mine is my computer's ratings which anyone can do, but I'll also be using it's picks against the spread, confidence in picks, and performance charts which are only available to subscribers to the Schmidt Computer Ratings 2010 NCAA Tournament Newsletter.
If you are wondering what you'll get in the newsletter, take a look at the newsletters and bowl game previews that were part of the 2009/2010 football newsletter. Or, as a sneak peek into what the basketball previews will look like, below is a preview of the Arkansas-Pine Bluff vs Winthrop play-in game.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Winthrop play on 3/16 for the right to play Duke in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff is ranked #248 by the computer with 71.552 ratings points and a record of 17-15. Their performance chart can be found below and shows they started off with a bunch of losses, but finished with wins and had their best game of the year to finish off their tournament.
Winthrop is ranked #202 by the computer with 74.582 points and a record of 17-13. Their performance chart can be found below and shows they started the season off slow with a bunch of losses, but got it together mid year and finished the season with 2 of their best games of the year.
The teams are not separated by 2 degrees in any way but are separated by 3 degrees in 26 ways.
The line is Winthrop by 5.5 and the computer agrees they should win but by just 3 points. Using the newsletter format* the pick is:
.Arkansas-Pine_Bluff +5.5 over *. Winthrop 3.0 2.5 0.707 0.671
* - Pick format. The x denotes the home team. The * denotes the pick to win the game. The . is just a place holder. The number before "over" is the best line I've found typically from Maddux Sports. The team on the left is the pick against the spread. The first column after the second team is what the computer predicts the winning team will win by. The next column is the difference between the Vegas line and that prediction. The next column is the confidence of my pick to win. The last column is the confidence of the pick against the spread.
Again, if you are interested in getting this type of preview for all NCAA tournament games, subscribe to the newsletter today! E-mail any questions or leave a comment.