Nate Silver's much hyped FiveThirtyEight.com debuted today following in the Grantland footsteps over at ESPN and they came right out of the gate crunching some interesting numbers in an attempt to predict the NCAA basketball tournament set to tip off this week.
The methodology used is all pretty interesting stuff, combining a number of existing power rankings such as Pomeroy's ratings and ESPN's Basketball Power Index, but naturally we're interested in the local teams chances of making some noise.
There's good news and bad news for Philadelphia area hoops fans.
Silver's system likes Villanova quite a bit but puts the chances of St. Joe's or Delaware making any real noise at a pretty distant probability.
The likelihood of Villanova getting to the:
Field of 32: 95%
Sweet Sixteen: 64%
Elite Eight: 41%
Final Four: 21%
Championship Game: 9%
WINNING IT ALL: 4%
The likelihood of St. Joe's getting to the:
Field of 32: 33%
Sweet Sixteen: 8%
Elite Eight: 3%
Final Four or Beyond: <1%
The likelihood of Delaware getting to the:
Field of 32: 9%
Sweet Sixteen: 2%
Elite Eight or Beyond: <1%
One of the interesting notes about the East bracket according to their methodology is they like the No. 4 seed Michigan State to have the best chances to advance to the Final Four out of the East at 24% with No. 1 seed Virginia at 23.3% and Villanova right behind them both at 21.1%.
If you're looking for some additional info to help you fill out your brackets, the FiveThirtyEight stuff is certainly informative, but as we all know, you can never predict what kind of madness will actually unfold in March.