By: Sean Cartell
SEC Digital Network
DESTIN, Fla. – The Southeastern Conference has won three NCAA Men’s Basketball Championships since 2006 and, at the league’s annual spring meetings in Destin on Tuesday, Commissioner Mike Slive discussed issues pertaining to the sport, including optimizing several factors.
Slive is keenly familiar with the men’s basketball selection process, having served on the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee, including a year as its chair in 2009. He knows the importance of the Ratings Percentage Index as a consideration factor in the selection process and, along with the league’s athletics directors, have charged the conference with improving its RPI and strength of schedule.
“One of the things our athletic directors did in their most recent meeting was agree that all of our schools would submit their men’s basketball non-conference schedules to the conference office for a review so that we can take a look at those, put the analytics to them and help our institutions in a way that is going to be helpful, not only to them in terms of postseason, but also helpful to the conference,” Slive said in his Tuesday press conference.
First implemented in the sport of men’s basketball in 1981, the calculation of RPI includes a team’s winning percentage (25%), its opponents winning percentage (50%) and the winning percentage of its opponents opponents (25%). Using that current RPI formula means that how one SEC team schedules can significantly affect the RPI of all SEC teams.
Slive also mentioned that the SEC athletics directors have asked the conference office to evaluate the possibilities of a primary site for the annual SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament.
“We talked with our athletic directors about future tournament sites and they voted unanimously to authorize the conference to explore a primary site for the men’s basketball tournament,” Slive said. “They felt it was important for us to explore that possibility and we will begin that exploration shortly.”
The 2013 SEC Spring Meetings continue Wednesday in Destin.