Bracketology numbers and notes to know for this weekend

Check out everything you need to know about the college men’s volleyball bracketology so far this season and for the upcoming matches this weekend.

Conference RPI

Non-conference results are what ultimately determine a conference’s RPI ranking. The ranking is based on a conference’s combined winning percentage against NCAA opponents. Every conference match results in one winner and one loser, which in terms of conference winning percentage means it’s always guaranteed to be at .500. As a result, non-conference results are the greatest influence on a conference’s RPI rankings. Teams also benefit in their RPI ranking if they play in a league with a strong conference RPI because during the conference season they have an increased opportunity to play against teams with winning records and high RPI rankings. Below are the non-conference records for each NCAA Division I-II conference against other NCAA members this season.

Conference Record Winning Pct.
1. MPSF 56-21 .727
2. Big West 56-29 .659
3. EIVA 39-30 .565
4. MIVA 41-33 .554
5. Independents 25-26 .490
6. NEC 34-36 .486
7. ConfCarolinas 14-28 .333
8. ECC 2-30 .067
8. SIAC 1-35 .028

Strength of schedule

Strength of schedule is one of the criteria categories the selection committee uses to determine the NCAA Tournament field. In addition, a team’s strength of schedule is part of the formula used to determine the RPI rankings. Below are the teams projected to have the best strength of schedule at the end of the season. The projections are based on match results so far this season.


Projected end of season strength of schedule (as of March 5)
2. Stanford
3. UC Santa Barbara
4. UC Irvine
5. UC San Diego
6. USC
7. Concordia
8. BYU
10. Pepperdine
11. Grand Canyon
12. Ohio State
13. Missouri S&T
14. Purdue Fort Wayne
15. Lewis
16. McKendree
17. Lindenwood
18. Sacred Heart
18. Hawai’i
20. Loyola

KPI rankings

The NCAA men’s volleyball committee this season added the KPI as a selection criteria category. The KPI is a ranking system that evaluates every match result on a scale with the best positive result receiving about a 1.0 score and the worst possible result garnering about a negative-1.0 score. Among the variables used to determine a match result score includes opponent’s winning percentage, opponent strength of schedule, point differential, match location.

KPI rankings (as of March 6)
1. Grand Canyon
3. UC Irvine
4. Long Beach State
5. Hawai’i
6. Ohio State
7. BYU
8. Penn State
9. Stanford
10. Loyola
11. Pepperdine
12. USC
13. Princeton
14. Purdue Fort Wayne
15. Ball State
16. Lewis
17. Harvard
18. McKendree
19. Daemen
20. Lincoln Memorial

Record against teams under consideration

The category of record against other teams under consideration for the NCAA Tournament is a piece of criteria that historically has helped shape the NCAA Tournament field. Below are the records for some notable teams against teams under consideration, according to Off the Block’s latest bracketology projections.

Record vs. under consideration teams
Grand Canyon (2-0)
Hawai’i (1-0)
Long Beach State (3-1)
UCLA (5-3)
Penn State (3-2)
UC Irvine (2-2)
BYU (3-5)
Ohio State (1-2)
Edward Waters (0-1)
Ball State (0-3)
Belmont Abbey (0-0)

Big bracketology matches this weekend

Below are the matches to watch this weekend that could have big implications on the bracketology at the end of the season.

Match Start time Bracketology significance
Grand Canyon vs. UC Irvine (at Hawai’i) 4 p.m. Thursday This is a match that will have implications on every major selection criteria category – head-to-head, record against teams under NCAA Tournament consideration, RPI and KPI.
Grand Canyon at Hawai’i 7 p.m. Friday See above – that applies to this match and then some.
UC Irvine at Hawai’i 5 p.m. Sunday It’s not a Big West match, but the winner of this will have an advantage trying to secure the head-to-head category edge when the two teams meet for their conference series in April.
Ohio State at UCLA 5 p.m. Sunday UCLA needs this win to even the head-to-head series. An Ohio State win and things start to get more interesting for the UCLA’s at-large chances.