Chat with Charlie Creme
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN.com's women's basketball Bracketology expert Charlie Creme stops by to talk about his latest tournament projections.
To see his latest bracket, check out the women's basketball Bracketology index.
Send your questions now and join Creme Thursday at 1 p.m. ET!
john (oklahoma city, ok)
how could you not have oklahoma state in your bracket? they are number 25 in the rankings yet not one of the top 64 teams? makes no sense
Charlie Creme (1:05 PM)
John, we go through this every year. The rankings and the NCAA Tournament process are not the same. Rankings are not one of the criterion officially considered. Sure, the committee (and myself) look at them, but that don't hold much wait.
Zak (Poughkeepsie, NY)
I'm a commentator for Marist Student Radio (WMAR). We had a spirited debate on Tuesday whether or not a 1 or 2 loss MAAC season for the Red Foxes would really improve their standing in either the polls or Bracketology with any significance. Barring a MAAC sweep, is Marist going to hover around an 11?
Charlie Creme (1:05 PM)
I would say if Marist dropped a couple of games in the MAAC then nothing better than an 11 would come the Red Foxes way.
Who are the teams on your short-list of national championship contenders at this point in the season?
Charlie Creme (1:08 PM)
UConn, Baylor, Stanford are the very short list. Duke and Tennessee are right there, but in a tournament setting I have my reservations about them. Duke's offense is just not good and that will cost them eventually. TN still seems to be missing the "IT" factor. Hard to put my finger on it, but something small seems missing.
With the improved play by mid-majors, at this point should we be still rewarding the BCS conferences with 5-8 bids, or should there be two bids to some additional mid-majors, like the MAC, for example
Charlie Creme (1:12 PM)
David, I wrote about this a little last week. Frankly, there hasn't been improved play by the mid-majors. Marist, MTSU, BG have had good NC seasons, but not many others. I have trouble lumping the A-10 schools in the same category, but you could also say Xavier and Duq, but there aren't many qualified so-called mid-majors out there for at-large bids.
Do you think the baylor lady bears deserve to be#1?AND DO YOU THINK THEY CAN BEAT UCONN AT THEIR OWN GAME NOW THAT THE LADY HUSKIES ARE NUMBER 2?
Charlie Creme (1:13 PM)
I suppose Baylor belongs at #1. I don't put a ton of stock in the rankings, but, as we saw earlier in the season, there doesn't appear to be much difference between Baylor and UConn.
Barry (Phoenix, AZ)
What is your track record as compared to Lunardi? Do you two ever compare notes or have an accuracy competition? :)
Charlie Creme (1:14 PM)
We really don't. Joe is a good friend and has been for a long time, but there isn't really a competition of any kind. He's been a little better than me most seasons, but I think last year we were even.
Hey Charlie, Georgia Tech is 12-4 with losses to UConn, Tennessee, Georgetown and at Old Dominion. They have an RPI of 30 and a SOS of 52, yet you have them as a 9 seed. Oklahoma is 12-3 with losses at Ohio State, at Arkansas and at TCU, and a RPI of 91 and a SOS of 193. Why no love for the Jackets?
Charlie Creme (1:17 PM)
Remember at this stage of the game RPI and SOS don't hold as much wait. People still argue all day long of the merits of RPI over a full season let alone at this time. Those numbers carry a lot of weight, but it's less so now than it will be. And also don't focus on who teams have lost to as much as whom they have beaten. Anyone can lose a game.
What is your take on Lady Vols? Also who is this surprising undefeated team Florida Gulf Coast? Are they any good? James Madison is an at large bid? How? :) Also is Samford an underrated mid major team? How do they do in conference and your opinion on them. Also here are a few more teams I would like to know your opinion about... Georgia Tech, Eastern Michigan, Wisconsin Green Bay, UCSB, Oregon State, Syracuse, Texas Tech, and St. Bonaventure. I follow these teams very closely. I would like to know your opinion on them? It would be great for an expert to give me their take! Thanks, Gary! :)
Charlie Creme (1:19 PM)
There is a lot there Gary, so I'll pick out a few things. Love GB. SU needs to do something in the BE. The OHio State win only carries them so far without something else. Georgia Tech is good, solid, but I still don't think will finish in the ACC's top-three. James Madsion was not an at-large. JMU was the AQ from the CAA.
Charlie Creme (1:21 PM)
Oh and Florida Gulf Coast has actually been good for a few seasons now. It's just that they aren't yet NCAA Tournament eligible. They are in the 4th and final year of their D1 probationary period. No doubt FGCU would have represent the A-Sun at some point if the Eagles had been eligible.
do you think lsu will get a higher seed come ncaa tournament time?
Charlie Creme (1:22 PM)
I'm really not sure. I think they are going to be up and down. The SEC is never easy and this LSU team doesn't have traditional LSU talent.
Al Carpenter (Athens, Ohio)
What does Rutgers have to do now that conference play is beginning to make the field?
Charlie Creme (1:25 PM)
RU had better have a very good BE season. The tough scheduling may have finally caught up to Coach Stringer. They were only a 9 seed last year and they didn't win enough in the NC this year. The Georgetown win was a nice start, but I'm going to say 10 wins before the conversation really gets serious about them and there had better be some high profile conference wins in there too.
Do you think baylor and uconn will meet in the ncaa title game this year?
Charlie Creme (1:25 PM)
They would be my choices now if I had to choose.
Sally (Birmingham, AL)
What is your take on the undefeated teams still left so far?
Charlie Creme (1:28 PM)
I mentioned Duke a little already. Love that D and rebounding, but that offense sets basketball back a couple of decades. You have to be able to better score in the tournament to win the whole thing. WVA may be similar. Great D, but not sure if there are enough scorers to get to a Final Four. UNC is a bit of a mystery, but will begin to see more of what the Tar Heels are in the next two weeks. At GTech tonight is a good start. A shame we won't get FGCU in the tournament yet again.
What would you say are the odds of your current bracket holding up until March?
Charlie Creme (1:29 PM)
Slim to none and slim just bought his bus ticket out of town.
Charlie Creme (1:30 PM)
Remember, a lot of the AQ's won't even hold up to the next bracket when there are actual conference games. In many of the smaller leagues it's a combination of overall record and RPI to break ties when there are no conference games yet. But that's part of what makes it fun. It provides the "What if" factor.
Um, Charlie, let me get this straight. Notre Dame has three losses: by 11 on the road at your #1 Baylor (same margin as Baylor/Tennessee), by 5 on the road at your #3 seed Kentucky, and by 3 at home in double OT against your #3 seed UCLA, and you seed ND #6 behind a 10-4 Ohio State team with several head scratching losses and BEHIND Michigan State who got POUNDED by Baylor and whose strength of schedule is 50 places behind ND? Does ND's strong showing on the road last night against a tough Marquette team do anything to convince you that maybe you've seeded ND a little low? Or do they have to beat UConn this Saturday to satisfy you that they're for real?
Charlie Creme (1:33 PM)
Steve, your bring up some decent points, but remember, anyone can lose. Yes, ND schedule has been good, but where are the meaningful wins? Ohio STate at least BEAT LSU and Oklahoma. Michigan State BEAT a solid Dayton team, plus FSU and Texas.
is there any ulm games on the espn family of networks schedule for next year?
Charlie Creme (1:34 PM)
Off the top of my head I don't know, but my guess is probably not until the Sun Belt Tournament.
Is this year Coach M at Duke finally meets expectations?
Charlie Creme (1:35 PM)
I'm assuming you mean Coach P unless there is some news on a coaching change I missed. I would say they could reach a Final Four, but that offense, and it isn't just shooting, HAS to get better.
kevin (macon ga)
Last year the committee gave more at-large bids to mid-majors than usual and they did quite well, with only the WAC going winless among multi-bid mid-majors. Meanwhile, major conference teams with seeds worse than #8 went 0-4. Will this year's committee take that into account when determining who gets in?
maxie (odessa, tx)
You would think that a journalist could spell weight.
Charlie Creme (1:37 PM)
No, past tournament results don't play in at all, plus they aren't measuring conferences, just teams.
Does Stanford end up with a #1 seed at the end of the year?
Charlie Creme (1:37 PM)
I think it's a strong possibility.
I have a comment to make about your comment to Georgia Tech and the Oklahoma question. Georgia Tech has beaten so many better teams than Oklahoma has even faced.. I don't get your comment because if it goes by Georgia Tech's wins than they have beat Georgia, @ Portland State, neutral site Missouri, MTSU, Northwestern.
Charlie Creme (1:38 PM)
You may have something Ken, but let's not get carried away. Missouri? Portland State?
Phil (Gainsville, Fl)
So you mentioned up there about Florida Gulf Coast... do you think that if they get past all their conference teams in regular season than I am sure make it to the wnit.. Do you think they could win it all?
Charlie Creme (1:39 PM)
I don't see why not.
do you think tennessee is one of the sec teams to watch closely?
Charlie Creme (1:39 PM)
They always are, right?
Terrell (Salisbury, MD)
Honest opinion on Maryland's Schedule? After the 06 National Title, and good recruiting classes regularly, don't you think it was time for Frese to start scheduling this team National?
Charlie Creme (1:40 PM)
It could be better, but this had been a young team and I understand scheduling to your roster in some seasons or periods for a program.
Mark (San Diego, CA)
I know this team needs to win their conference tournament to get in but how would you say the intensity has changed from the beginning of the season to now with UC Santa Barbara?
Charlie Creme (1:42 PM)
Well they are certainly playing better, but the results may have as much to do with the schedule getting easier. And, yes, the Gauchos will need to win the Big West tourney.
Which of Oklahoma's wins are you so impressed with that they merit a 6 seed at this point? The 3-pt home win over RPI #58 New Mexico? Or was it their lone road win over RPI #218 UW-Milwaukee? Or are you banking on Whitney Hand's return? It doesn't seem to be paying off so far based on their recent road loss at RPI #74 TCU. Nothing against the Sooners and maybe they do end up that high at the end of the day but that one has me scratching my head at this point.
Charlie Creme (1:44 PM)
You may have a point on OK. Perhaps they aren't a bit too high, but let's not get carried away. It's not like the teams behind them are lining up with huge credentials either. I'll be very interested in the OU-Neb game this weekend.
Can Minnesota get in the big dance this year
Charlie Creme (1:45 PM)
It's going to be difficult at this point. 0-3 in the BT is a big hole. They would have to go on a tear at this point. Longshot at very best.
Charlie Creme (1:46 PM)
Florida is right there, but not quite right now. That loss to Brown will hurt, no doubt, as will the Hampton loss. Florida's fate now comes down to the SEC season. The NC with the Gators didn't tell us enough.
kevin McCaffrey (brookfield,ct)
Geno is coming out in supporting Diana Taurasi on her drug testing. Will Geno be in trouble with the basketball world? Geno will not waiver in his support for his players.
Charlie Creme (1:48 PM)
I doubt he will be in any trouble with the basketball world. Anyone can respect someone who has the back of their friends and colleagues. The shocking story would have been if he HADN't come out in full support.
I live in Athens but I am a huge Georgia Tech fan. I was reading what the others posted about Georgia Tech and what you said. I believe Missouri beat Georgetown this year... I know they are not the best but still that has to count for something. Portland St. did beat a good Tulane team. I just don't understand how Oklahoma deserves a better seed still hard to comprehend.
Charlie Creme (1:52 PM)
Some have made what I would consider valid points on OU, but we're getting carried away on Georgia Tech. Portland STate is 7-6. Missouri is 8-6. Sure they each have a decent win, but if GTech is building it's resume on that, it's a poor case.
Terrell (Salisbury, MD)
I understand that logic, Mr. Creme. Maryland even with the bulk of her National Championship roster back, for at least two years, still arranged weak OOC schedules. As a fan I just thought it was a prime opportunity to go National with the schedule.
Charlie Creme (1:53 PM)
You may be right and it may be. Perhaps next year. This team is still young, the ACC is a huge challenge and they did play Gtown, St. John's, and an at least solid St. Joe's team. Purdue is a good opponent on paper, so it wasn't terrible.
Frankie (Dallas, Tx)
Let me ask this... Oklahoma state is okay... How does Texas Tech get no respect when clearly they have played better and beat better opponents than OK State. Am I correct?
Charlie Creme (1:54 PM)
Not at all sure what you mean. Texas Tech was in the latest field and Okla St. was not.
Yes but Georgia Tech beat Georgia, MTSU, and Northwestern? Doesn't that count for something when comparing to Oklahoma? I mean that's all I am trying to say.
Charlie Creme (1:55 PM)
Of course and Georgia Tech got in the field as a 9. I've acknowledged that OU might be too high, but I don't think I've misrepresented Tech at all.
Charlie Creme (1:56 PM)
Ok. I'll have to wrap it up there. Good stuff today. Always love the chats and looking forward to the next one. Keep looking for the bracket updates and enjoy the first full weekend of conference play.