NEW: Most of Arkansas' nonconference schedule is here

http://www.wholehogsports.com/news/2016 … on-nov-11/

So, the only 3 games missing are the games that will be at Bud Walton arena, that’s part of the Golden Gopher Showcase? If that’s the case that means we are only playing 3 games outside of Arkansas in the non-conference, and 2 of those are against teams that aren’t expected to do well this year in their conference (Minnesota and Ok State). That only gives us an opportunity to get 1 really good road win out of state in non-conference against Texas, and that’s considered a neutral site game.

I really thought we needed another quality team to play outside of Arkansas to legitimize our non-conference schedule. We missed the NIT in 12-13 because we only played 3 games outside of the state in non-conference, even though we had 19 wins and went 10-8 in conference. The SEC isn’t perceived to be strong this year, so it may take us 24-25 wins to be solid in the NCAA tournament field. Really hope I’m wrong, but I admit I’m a little disappointed in this schedule.

Yes, those are the three missing.

This is a typical schedule for this coaching staff. The hope is that they identify which mid-majors are going to be good and get those wins. I think Austin Peay, Stephen F. Austin and North Dakota State have the potential to be RPI builders.

Arkansas is not going to play more than three games out of the state in nonconference. If you go below 18 home games, the administration becomes unhappy. Each game is worth around $275,000 in season ticket sales alone, not to mention other ticket sales, concessions, travel costs, etc., that go into playing at home vs. on the road. And you always have to factor in one game in North Little Rock.

I thought a schedule like last year’s was perfect. 2 neutral site and 2 road games against quality teams. And we played all 4 of these before conference started. I think that schedule was the reason for the team overachieving in conference play even though we were predicted to finish at the bottom of the conference. You look at the schedule this year before conference play starts and you’re talking about only 1 true road game experience against a Minnesota team that only won 8 games last year. And we’re playing in the conference that’s the hardest to win on the road. As a fan doesn’t really make me optimistic they’ll be ready for SEC road games with this year’s non-conference schedule.

I am not sure if Oklahoma State will be as bad as you project. We will see on that.

As a rule, I would like to play one road game against a strong Power 5 team and one winnable road game against a Power 5 teams that can finish in the middle of the pack. I think we have close to that in 2016-17 schedule. In addition, I would like to play two strong Power 5 teams at home. I don’t think we have that in our projected 2016-17 schedule.

Regardless of how you schedule, you need to win road games and some wins against top RPI teams, to give you a good RPI. The above model gives us a chance to post some wins on the road and also post some wins against strong teams at home. I think 2016-17 schedule satisfies half of that model.

Matt, the Honda Center is the Anaheim Ducks’ arena. The one in Houston is Toyota Center. Wrong Japanese car company…

Ok State will be picked to finish near the bottom of big 12 this year. They really aren’t returning much talent, and they will be adjusting to a new coach and a new system. Now they are in the Big 12, so their RPI won’t be horrible. But, it’s not going to a top 50 RPI road game or close to that. Our best hope for them is the Big 12 being really good like they normally are and they pull a few upsets and have a sub 100 RPI. If they can do that that would be good for us.

Ugh. Thanks for pointing that out.

Yep
The athletic dept expects my annual $910 for two season tickets. A decrease in games would reduce my $910 unless they upped the price of tickets. Based on the # of season tickets that adds up.

At least if you are going to do it this way can we get a marquee home game in the non conference?

I think they see Houston as their marquee game. I don’t necessarily think that, but it is big enough to warrant a home-and-home.

The marquee game some years may very well be dependent on the team and location the Hogs draw for the Big 12 challenge.

Arkansas does get Minnesota at home in 2017-18. Perhaps Colorado State will be Big 12 in-waiting by then.

Don’t sleep on Houston. They have a lot returning on a team that won at Temple by 27, won at UConn, and defeated SMU and Cincy at home. Most of their losses were competitive games against good teams. The Cougars could be an NCAAT team this season and may be the second best team that we play in nonconference.

Good observation, I honestly didn’t know much about Houston. Although I’m disappointed we didn’t have more away games, the schedule has some solid teams, that shouldn’t hurt our RPI. The team with the worst RPI in non-conference so far is Minnesota who had a 264 RPI last year, which they have a decent recruiting class coming in and return their top 2 scorers, so hopefully they are significantly better.

Also, haven’t seen it mentioned in this thread, but Matt found out 2 more games. We’ll also play UT Arlington (Last year RPI 107) and Mount St. Mary’s (247 RPI). So, we’re just lacking one team. Hopefully they can find another sub 200 RPI team.

The Cougars went 22-10 last season and finished third in The American conference, but missed the NCAA Tournament after being upset in their conference tournament opener. The team features guard Rob Gray Jr., a junior college transfer who led The American with 16 points per game as a sophomore.

And Houston is coached by Kelvin Sampson, who, despite his recruiting flaws, is a heck of a basketball coach.

Listed with last year’s RPI:

  1. Texas
  2. SF Austin
  3. IPFW
  4. Houston
  5. UT Arlington
  6. North Dakota St
  7. North Florida
  8. Oklahoma St
  9. Austin Peay
  10. Sam Houston St
  11. Mount St. Mary’s
  12. Minnesota

When was the last time Arkansas did not play a team from the SWAC or MEAC?

I love all the opponents in the 100-200 range. That is excellent for RPI gaming. One hopes that Minnesota will not be awful again + MSM will be OK returning eight players. They are in the Northeast Conference, though, which is hardly better than the SWAC and MEAC. At least we don’t see four of 'em on the schedule anymore.

Looks like the final team on non-conference will be Southern Illinois on November 14th. Last year’s RPI 136.

Our first 2 games are about as tough opponents as I can remember to open the season. Our first opponent, IPFW was the regular season co-champs in the Summit league and ended last year with a 74 RPI. Our 2nd opponent, Southern Illinois has had tough basketball teams for years. They have struggled some the last 6 years, following six consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, including 2 Sweet Sixteens. They certainly are not your usual “cupcakes” to open the season.

I would like someone on HI staff or Niles to come up with an analysis of how close or how far off the RPI from the prior year is to the ending RPI in a current year over the last five years, I have a feeling there is a significant swing in those RPIs from year to year.

I think scheduling a RPI rich schedule is not easy as some believe. It may look good before the season opens, but the reality may be quite different.

That has to be true. It certainly is in baseball. It seems as soon as you schedule a team, they either go on a winning tear or on a losing one.

I would expect that using only RPI from the previous year to predict next year’s RPI is fairly noisy, especially outside the power conferences. However, if you add other info like average conference ranking, team computer rankings further back than just one year, percentage of stats returning, and incoming class rankings, you might get predictive enough that the projected schedule strength has a fairly narrow variance. My guess is that the staff takes into account many, if not all, of these factors.

I don’t have an easy way to collect that data over all of college basketball. Actually I’ve been toying with the idea of doing some serious number crunching for predicting college basketball results, but job one will be to figure out how to most efficiently collect the data on the cheap. I’m not there yet. However, if anybody has some of the above scheduling attributes, I’d be willing to run the data through any number of machine-learning algorithms.