Inconsistent play is usually one of the biggest reasons a college basketball team finds itself on the NCAA Tournament bubble.
On an almost annual basis, Dayton seems to be one of those teams. Generally, the Flyers start strong and meet some resistance in a challenging Atlantic 10 conference. This year appears to be somewhat similar.
Meanwhile, a team from a “Power Six” conference who spends most of the season in the Top 25 usually has little danger of missing the NCAA Tournament. However, Mississippi State could be an exception to that rule. The Bulldogs’ resume deserves to be placed under more scrutiny than it has been thus far—probably due to their weekly spot in the Top 25.
Here is a quick summary of the key numbers on Dayton and Mississippi State:
Dayton: 17-10 Overall, 7-6 A-10; RPI 69, SOS 58, 3-4 vs. current RPI top 50
Mississippi State: 19-9 Overall, 6-7 SEC; RPI 60, SOS 65, 3-3 vs. current RPI top 50
Common Opponents: Alabama (both won), Mississippi (Dayton won, Miss. St. split two games)
RPI information from realtimerpi.com, updated Feb. 23