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Midwest (Heartland) Analysis and Power Rankings

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Midwest (Heartland) Analysis and Power Rankings Empty Midwest (Heartland) Analysis and Power Rankings

Sat Dec 14, 2019 11:35 pm
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Using the tab summaries available on the AMTA website, I complied all records/results/etc. for the Midwest (heartland) programs (considered as WI, IL, MN, IA, MO, KS, NE, SD, ND) that seem to be relatively grouped together in common regionals. Some oddities will apply, but the only teams eligible for these rankings are from these states.
The following section is the ten highest teams in terms of BPT (Ballots per tournament), with no other consideration put into the order. ALSO: this is only consistent of the tab summaries that have been posted on the AMTA site as of 12/14. All results through November 24th are tallied. Teams with only one recorded tournament will not be considered for either section below.

RK - CODE - TEAM                      Record- BPT - #Of Tournaments- Notable results
1. 1276 UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO (15-1) (7.5BPT) (2) (1st at Illinois) (1st at IUPUI)
2. 1116 CREIGHTON UNIVERSITY (22-2) (7.33BPT) (3) (1st at UMKC) (1st at Creighton) (3rd at NW Missouri St)
3. 1616 UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS (20-3-1) (6.83BPT) (3) (2nd at Cornshucker) (2nd at UMKC)
4. 1193 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (19-5) (6.33BPT) (3) (1st at Drake)
5. 1191 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (23-7-2) (6 BPT) (4) (2nd at Drake) (3rd at Illinois)
6. 1192 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (24-8 ) (6 BPT) (4) (2nd at Hamline) (3rd at Drake) (3rd at Minnesota)
7. 1383 UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS-CHICAGO (11-3-2) (6 BPT) (2) (2nd at Milwaukee)
8. 1010 MACALESTER COLLEGE (17-7) (5.67BPT) (3) (1st at Minnesota) (3rd at Hamline)
9. 1154 WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY ST LOUIS (32-14-2) (5.5BPT) (6) (1st at E Kentucky) (3rd at Wash U StL)
10. 1706 UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA (11-5) (5.25BPT) (2) (3rd at Creighton)
Honorable Mentions
1275 CHICAGO, 1011 MACALESTER, 1429 MISSOURI, 1430 MISSOURI, 1032 WHEATON, 1206 CORNELL


POWER RANKINGS - based on results alone, no consideration given to traditional program strength or stacking, only the results compared to the strength of the tournaments. Deference is also given to head-to-head or comparative results from teams in the same tournament. Obviously there's no way this can be completely comprehensive or objective (and I most certainly haven't seen all the teams on this list yet), but hey, that's what the comments section is for, right?
1. 1276 UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO (15-1)
2. 1154 WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY ST LOUIS (32-14-2)
3. 1116 CREIGHTON UNIVERSITY (22-2)
4. 1616 UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS (20-3-1)
5. 1191 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (23-7-2)
6. 1193 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (19-5)
7. 1192 UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA (24-8 )
8. 1275 UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO (16-11-1)
9. 1032 WHEATON COLLEGE (19-10-3)
10. 1206 CORNELL COLLEGE (24-14-2)

In the hunt: (no particular order)
1429 MISSOURI (10-5-1), 1430 MISSOURI (10-5-1), 1059 CENTRAL MISSOURI (19-12-1), 1383 UIC (11-3-2), 1011 MACALESTER (17-7), 1706 NEBRASKA (11-5), 1372 IOWA (23-23-3), 1373 IOWA (21-15-2), 1155 WASH U (18-12-2)
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 1:03 am
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Could do more regions in the future, but obviously went with the home area first. FWIW, I'm not affiliated with any of the teams ranked on this list- so fire away if you disagree, I won't take any offense.
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 1:44 pm
This is great - I don't know much about the midwest, but I would love to see your takes on other regions. West, Northeast, Southeast.
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:56 pm
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Is the St. Olaf tournament included? Minnesota teams took 1st, 2nd, and 4th, a Macalester team took 3rd.
I think it went:
1st: Minnesota A
2nd: Minnesota C
3rd: Macalester C
4th: Minnesota B
But I'm not sure
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 3:57 pm
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This is really interesting, thanks for putting it together. I'd have Cornell College -- a nationals team last year that lost only one or two people -- higher. Northwestern should be on there as well -- their invitational results have been solid, and they had some of their best members abroad this semester. They got two teams to nats last year, so I think they've earned their place. I'd also have Illinois above Creighton -- both have been really good, but Illinois has done it against better competition.

Also not how sure how much weight to give records in invitational season; a lot of teams are unstacked for a long time. I know a lot of teams on that list were in fact unstacked for most if not all of the invitational season.

Anyway, here's my top ten:

1. U Chicago A
2. Northwestern A
3. Illinois A
4. U Chicago B
5. Minnesota A
6. Cornell College A
7. Northwestern B
8. WashU A
9. Creighton A
10. Minnesota B

I'd have Iowa, Central Missouri, Macalester, and Mizzou just missing out.
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:11 pm
Yeah I didn't give any weight to success from previous years- hence the perhaps bizarrely low rankings for Cornell/NU (Northwestern doesn't even appear on the BPT list because of their strength of schedule, and none of their unstacked teams seem particularly frightening). As for Creighton, it's an interesting case. I don't know much about them but at UMKC (a fairly large field) they tied Illinois at 8-0 but had a much higher CS, so that's why they were ultimately ranked above them, even though UIUC has undoubtedly faced tougher competition. Also I do believe that's the only tournament posted so far that had two teams finish at 8-0.

The St Olaf tourney doesn't appear to be posted on the AMTA Invitational page so it was not included for these rankings.

And ultimately it's ranking unstacked teams so there may never be an answer that can be universally agreed upon (nor will the answer be all that important in terms of predicting regional success), especially when considering someone like Creighton who seems to be pretty clearly stacked and manhandling lower competition (2 tournaments with ridiculously high PDs). Would love to have seen what they could do at a tournament like Cornshucker- but they definitely are the wildcard of this list at the moment. 22-2 with their only loss being to Mizzou is pretty impressive no matter how you shake it down, can't put them too far down the list with a record like that even if the competition hasn't been great. Did get a nice win over Central Missouri though, so if anyone knows more about them I'd love to hear it- similar with the Minnesota schools.

In terms of program rankings and making guesses on stacking, I assume Chicago, Minnesota, Cornell, Northwestern, Wash U would still be the top 5, with Illinois, Creighton, Macalester and Wheaton rounding out the list. Mizzou might be a darkhorse this year- managed a decent result with each of their presumably unstacked teams. Suprised they were sent to Lawrence, it seems to be a fairly tough regional with a few teams outperforming expectations this fall. Not much of a read on Iowa yet- a couple of interesting results that I wouldn't have foreseen. All I know for sure so far is Cedar Rapids ORCS will be a bloodbath. A couple of elite programs and a whole lot of 'upper-midcard' programs, if you will.

Always up for any information that would aid in these considerations. I'm mostly going in blind on results alone (although admittedly that does have its advantages in relation to biases too).
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Sun Dec 15, 2019 11:45 pm
I'm pretty sure the Illinois team at UMKC was Illinois B, not Illinois A. Creighton is for sure really impressive. They have some really good young attorneys and I expect them to do really well at regionals. It's just tough to get a good read on them because they just haven't hit the same level of competition as a lot of the other teams on this list.

Also, I'm pretty sure Mizzou does not stack. At least in past years, they have run two teams of equal strength. Not sure if they are going to try to do that again this year, as they have three teams registered. But that's at least what they've done in the past.
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Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:59 am
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This appears to be pretty right on. Seeing the way the regionals were assigned these lists are all the teams being used to power balance things. Creighton has juice to make a real run at it, loads of experience and seem to have been stacked from the start so just building reps. That win over Central Missouri was close on the points but probably speaks to the polish of a team that's stacked out of the gate, Central Missouri doesn't stack for fall. Creighton will probably ruin someone's weekend at regionals and have a real shot to get to NCT. Mizzou semi-stacks, looks like if they fully stacked they could have one real power team. Mizzou has a tough regional but their invitational results have been very consistent, they finished 2nd in a fairly deep field (WashU, Mizzou, Central Missouri, UCF came up, Indiana) at the tournament put on by Columbia College that Mizzou Law hosts this past weekend.

Wash U(A) is what you would expect from them, Wash U(B) is young but solid and exactly the kind of team that can grab that last bid for ORCS. Illinois is still really good, very poised and experienced.

To me the only surprise to this area is the absence of Loyola as a power. They have the people, and I'd never be surprised for their A team to show up to a Regional and be ready to blow people's doors off, just hasn't been the case of late. They seem to be in a similar lull as Kansas as far as results are concerned but both programs have 2-3 teams and solid folks running the show. Both are the kind of programs that could show up at regionals and pull 5 or 6 ballots and it would not be a shock to see them get bids to ORCS.


Stab at the Top 10:

1. U Chicago A
2. Northwestern A
3. Illinois A
4. Minnesota A
5. Cornell College A
6. U Chicago B
7. Creighton A
8. WashU A
9. Northwestern B
10. Mizzou A (if they stack)

Not Quite Top 10: Iowa, Central Missouri, Macalester, Wisconsin, WashU(B), Minnesota(B), Nebraska in that mix.
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Mon Feb 03, 2020 3:29 pm
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Given the results I can recall from the Loras field- there's going to be an interesting shakeup to this list if it can be done properly before regionals. Real interesting results involving teams like Wheaton/Creighton/Cornell/Iowa & the traditionally elite programs are (as expected) starting to separate from the field. GCF and Indiana might provide some additional clarity to the order.
If I had to quickly power rank the now-stacked teams, this is what it might look like:
1. U Chicago A
2. Minnesota A
3. U Chicago B
4. Wash U A
5. Northwestern A
6. Cornell A
7. Minnesota B
8. Northwestern B
9. Illinois A
10. Wash U B
HMs: Iowa, Creighton, Wheaton, C Missouri, Macalester, Mizzou, Kansas
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Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:25 pm
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I think Northwestern A deserves to be higher on this list. Looking at results from Ramblin' Wreck, Northwestern A took 3rd place, and Minnesota A took 6th place. Minnesota and Northwestern A faced each other at Atlanta; Northwestern took both, but not by much.
Central Missouri did not advance out of the Norman regionals (but got an honorable mention). Since there were only 4 bids in the Norman regional, an honorable mention on this list is still valid. Hopefully, they'll get an open bid to go to ORCS.
Macalester A won the Hilltop invitational, so a higher place on the list for them is probably deserving for their A team. Macalester A also went 5-3 at UCLASSIC, which is also impressive. Looking at results from the Hatting invitational, their B team is struggling post-stack (going 2-5-1). I'm guessing that they didn't stack until this semester.
I'd say that Northwestern A and Macalester A deserve higher spots on the list, with Illinois A being taken off the list as a result of Macalester going on it.
What were the results from the Loras invitational? I've yet to see the tab summary.
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Mon Feb 03, 2020 9:03 pm
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Just to clarify a few things:  

I agree about the Northwestern Analysis, also Northwestern B was the one to get 3rd place at Rambling Wreck (while taking 2 from a supposedly higher ranked Minnesota A).  For a program with 2 teams that have gone to Nats 2 years in a row, I don't see how either is not in the top 5/6 Midwestern teams.
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Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:02 pm
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I agree about Northwestern -- great program. They also were missing some people this fall semester who were abroad and are just now getting them back. They also had a ton of new members getting experience last semester, but still managed to put together some great results. I think it has to be them and U Chicago competing for the best team in the region.

I also think Illinois A should stay on this list. They are coming off a really strong ORCS showing last year (where they easily took 2 from WashU A and split with Northwestern A) and have put together some impressive invitational results. A very talented and well run program.
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Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:01 pm
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Tue Feb 04, 2020 8:30 pm
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Yeah that explains some of the things I was hearing. Creighton took 2 from Wheaton then lost 6 straight by 1 point (I assume these were one judge rounds). They got a tough draw- MSU A, Iowa B, Kansas A (CS of 22), but still interesting to be sure. They ended with a positive point differential and their largest ballot was a plus-4. Not sure I've ever seen that before.
Wheaton's draw got much easier from losing that round- and I was stunned when I saw a +11 over who was listed as Illinois A (it was actually their C team, if the numbers are correct).
Cornell A dropped a ballot by 19 to Carleton B- I'm going to assume that's a hell of an outlier, but still- otherwise took care of weaker competition.
Not in this region, but EMU had a good weekend. Only dropped one in a split decision with IL ST
Grinnell A also put themselves on the map with a strong performance- likewise for the Carleton squads
Iowa A feasted on weaker competition, but dropped and tied with Carleton- not as strong of a result as the record would indicate. (The further down this list I go the more I can't help feeling Creighton got an absolutely ungodly draw- missing any of the large number of really weak hits in this tournament)
Iowa B took from Creighton and MSU C in a fairly solid weekend.
Aside from being blasted by EMU, Kansas A put in a nice weekend, and will get themselves some consideration heading into regionals.

An up-and-down field but this lends some clarity to the picture. Despite the inverse results (2-6) and (6-2), Creighton might have actually shown separation from Wheaton, Iowa is still super hard to figure out, Cornell, Grinnell and Carleton are just muddying the waters with curious results. The proportion of one-judge rounds, however, make these results suspect at best.

And yes, I do seem to have not given Northwestern quite the amount of credit their results seem to dictate (to be fair I didn't have my results doc up at the time), but yeah they merit at nothing else a higher spot than Minnesota A at this juncture.

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