Indiana Tops Initial MRI Computer Rankings, Gonzaga, Missouri Valley Strong

Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Our initial computer rankings at Mid-Major Madness have a lot of praise for Gonzaga, the Missouri Valley and a few mid-major teams that might have been missed in the early going.

Near the end of the summer, we introduced you to the concept of the MRI, the computer ranking system that I developed more than a decade ago. The goal then was to identify those mid-major programs that deserved a little more attention than they would normally get from the major media.

That definition of major media has changed quite a bit in the last 12 years. The big boys play a little more attention to the top mid-major programs, but the concept remains the same.

If you aren't winning major tournaments, like Gonzaga or Creighton, and you aren't playing the cream of the crop (and usually getting beat), you will be missed.

And so we feel that the MRI is a strong addition to the Mid-Major Madness discussion, as it will help us to show which teams might be getting ignored on a wider scale.

Here is a warning: it is still rather early in the season, but we have always released the initial rankings on the Monday following Thanksgiving. You might find some teams you hadn't counted on near the top of the charts (Texas Tech (thanks to Cupcake City), Northwestern, Colorado State). And you might find some teams you will be immediately looking for nowhere near the top 25 (Kentucky, Michigan State, Florida State).

There will be a lot of fluidity over the next several weeks as the kinks in the data based on a single game or two get smoothed into the seasonal data, but the data still holds pretty well right now. We have seen as much in past seasons.

This will also be the first time that we release the full rankings every week of the year. In the past, we have only shown the top 25, and a few other teams of note. Now, you will get all 347 teams.

And last, before we pick out the highlights, remember that these rankings only consider games against Division 1 opponents. As such, the records might be a little different than what you are used to seeing. And some teams like Texas and North Texas get a break from embarrassing lower division losses.

With that, here are three things that stood out the most in the initial MRI rankings:

1. Indiana has helped to validate the group think that put the Hoosiers at No. 1 in all of the preseason rankings. They have won and won well against almost everyone on the schedule so far, including knocking off difficult opponents. But the team that we should all be watching is Gonzaga, who closed out a nice tournament in Orlando with a convincing win over Davidson. The Zags have been facing difficult Big 6 competition and dominating games in all aspects. As we mentioned in our roundup of the Old Spice Classic final, this is a special team based on the results they have been generating. It is entirely possible we will be looking Gonzaga on top of this ranking before the end of the year.

2. We don't consider the Mountain West a mid-major conference based on its performance in the past few seasons. This year looked like it was going to be no different. The league was the third best conference until this weekend played itself out. Still, the Mountain West is still a strong No. 7, barely behind the SEC. Colorado State is the surprise leader in the league, but there are four or five other teams that have been making names for themselves in this early season. And don't sleep on the Atlantic 10, another conference we normally ignore at Mid-Major Madness. The league might not have the shining example out front, or in the top 25, but there are a lot of clustered teams just beyond that mark who could make a strong move. The Atlantic 10 could be looking at a strong showing come March given that the strength goes about eight deep.

3. The Missouri Valley has done quite a job of establishing itself in the early going. Between Creighton (a monster team when the shooting is right), Illinois State (could give Louisville a scare given new injury concerns) and Wichita State (yes, we were wrong), the league has a trio of candidates to hold spots near the top of the rankings all season long. Northern Iowa didn't do too badly given the level of competition it faced at Atlantis, and Bradley and Southern Illinois have been pleasant surprises in the early going. The Valley could be deeper than anyone guessed, and an upset waiting to happen on any night given the early season numbers.

Here are the full computer rankings through the games of Nov. 25, 2012.

MRI BASKETBALL RANKINGS 2012-13
Rank Team W L MRI
1 Indiana 6 0 113.92
2 Gonzaga 6 0 93.38
3 Mississippi 5 0 93.00
4 Louisville 5 1 89.23
5 Florida 5 0 87.06
6 Syracuse 4 0 84.22
7 Pittsburgh 5 1 84.13
8 Illinois 6 0 82.49
9 Colorado State 3 0 81.73
10 Michigan 4 0 80.52
11 Ohio State 4 0 80.45
12 Northwestern 6 0 79.32
13 Duke 6 0 78.26
14 Texas Tech 3 0 77.02
15 Ohio 5 0 75.66
16 Minnesota 6 1 74.39
17 Cincinnati 6 0 74.10
18 Creighton 6 0 72.81
19 Illinois State 5 1 72.60
20 Wichita State 6 0 71.95
21 Cal 6 0 71.86
22 Baylor 4 2 70.43
23 Kansas 4 1 69.86
24 Oklahoma State 5 0 69.70
25 Oregon 5 1 68.64
26 UNLV 3 1 68.43
27 North Carolina 4 1 68.39
28 Colorado 5 0 68.06
29 Middle Tenn. St 4 1 67.64
30 Arizona 3 0 65.45
31 Missouri 5 1 65.45
32 Wisconsin 4 2 64.17
33 Seton Hall 5 1 62.79
34 Notre Dame 5 1 62.61
35 North Carolina State 4 1 62.31
36 Xavier 5 1 62.13
37 Georgia Tech 4 1 61.91
38 Iowa 5 1 60.62
39 St. Joseph's 3 1 60.23
40 LSU 4 0 59.82
41 BYU 4 2 59.55
42 Kansas State 4 1 59.02
43 Charlotte 5 0 58.90
44 New Mexico 6 0 58.77
45 Louisiana Tech 5 1 58.20
46 Iowa State 4 2 58.08
47 Maryland 4 1 58.00
48 Houston 3 0 57.85
49 Virginia Commonwealth 3 3 57.39
50 Connecticut 5 1 57.37
51 Butler 3 2 57.15
52 Clemson 4 1 56.95
53 Alabama 4 0 56.80
54 Marquette 4 1 56.71
55 UCLA 4 2 55.58
56 Santa Clara 4 0 55.54
57 Dayton 4 1 55.29
58 Kent State 4 2 54.88
59 Michigan State 5 1 54.70
60 Texas A&M 4 1 54.65
61 Temple 3 0 54.49
62 Cal State Northridge 6 1 54.49
63 South Carolina 5 1 54.43
64 Stanford 4 3 54.07
65 Valparaiso 5 1 53.78
66 Providence 4 2 53.59
67 SMU 5 1 53.45
68 Eastern Kentucky 4 0 53.34
69 Boise State 4 1 53.03
70 Virginia 4 2 53.01
71 Arizona State 4 1 52.96
72 San Francisco 2 1 52.54
73 Florida State 4 1 52.49
74 Saint Louis 3 2 52.49
75 Bradley 4 1 51.83
76 Kentucky 4 1 51.80
77 Southern Mississippi 5 0 51.10
78 Wyoming 5 0 51.00
79 Utah 3 1 50.33
80 Stephen Austin 2 0 50.29
81 Southern Illinois 2 1 50.03
82 Oregon State 4 1 50.02
83 Iona 2 2 49.74
84 Loyola (MD) 5 1 49.69
85 Bucknell 4 1 49.66
86 Akron 2 2 49.54
87 Illinois-Chicago 4 1 49.20
88 Virginia Tech 5 0 48.68
89 Purdue 2 3 48.38
90 Miami 3 1 48.31
91 Arkansas 3 2 47.96
92 Nebraska 4 1 47.89
93 Georgetown 4 1 46.96
94 Tulane 4 2 46.66
95 San Diego State 3 1 46.62
96 Western Kentucky 3 2 46.54
97 Vermont 3 1 46.03
98 Rutgers 4 1 45.53
99 Utah State 3 1 45.48
100 Texas 3 1 45.26
101 Oklahoma 4 1 44.70
102 St. John's 4 2 44.46
103 West Virginia 1 3 44.16
104 Western Michigan 3 1 44.01
105 Hawaii 4 1 43.72
106 Richmond 4 2 43.70
107 Belmont 3 1 43.20
108 George Mason 4 2 42.91
109 St. Bonaventure 3 1 42.83
110 Tennessee 3 1 42.73
111 Stony Brook 3 2 42.34
112 La Salle 3 1 42.08
113 Arkansas State 3 1 41.97
114 USC 3 3 41.40
115 Air Force 3 1 41.15
116 Arkansas-Little Rock 4 3 40.89
117 Washington 2 3 40.45
118 Memphis 3 2 40.13
119 Eastern Michigan 3 1 39.97
120 Cal State Sacramento 3 1 39.94
121 Central Florida 3 2 39.88
122 Murray State 3 1 38.98
123 Lehigh 4 2 38.77
124 Rider 4 3 38.03
125 Canisius 3 1 38.03
126 South Florida 3 2 37.97
127 North Texas 2 2 37.83
128 Jacksonville State 4 2 37.25
129 Tulsa 3 2 36.83
130 TCU 4 2 36.45
131 Albany 4 2 36.41
132 Evansville 3 2 36.35
133 Towson 2 2 36.25
134 East Carolina 2 0 35.93
135 Pacific 2 3 35.83
136 Washington State 3 3 35.69
137 Penn State 3 2 35.60
138 UAB 2 3 35.59
139 Wright State 4 2 35.57
140 Charleston 3 2 35.11
141 Gardner Webb 3 4 34.67
142 Oral Roberts 2 2 34.38
143 Miami (Ohio) 3 2 33.90
144 Indiana State 3 1 33.22
145 Pepperdine 3 2 33.10
146 Wisconsin-Green Bay 3 3 32.33
147 Central Conn St. 3 3 32.28
148 Army 3 2 32.21
149 Idaho 1 2 32.18
150 St. Mary's 3 2 31.93
151 Central Michigan 2 2 31.83
152 Cal Poly 2 2 31.74
153 Ball State 2 2 31.74
154 UC Davis 1 2 31.71
155 New Mexico State 2 3 31.56
156 Harvard 1 2 31.50
157 Loyola Marymount 2 2 31.38
158 UC-Irvine 2 4 31.20
159 NJIT 2 2 31.19
160 Robert Morris 3 3 31.10
161 Savannah State 3 3 30.71
162 North Dakota State 3 2 30.51
163 Youngstown State 3 3 29.81
164 Elon 3 2 29.70
165 Northeastern 4 2 28.97
166 Eastern Illinois 3 3 28.93
167 Cleveland State 3 2 28.73
168 Quinnipiac 2 3 28.59
169 Texas Arlington 2 1 28.57
170 Delaware 2 4 28.54
171 DePaul 2 3 28.52
172 Davidson 2 3 28.47
173 St. Francis (NY) 2 2 28.21
174 Massachusetts 2 2 27.98
175 Wake Forest 3 2 27.95
176 Marshall 2 3 27.92
177 Georgia State 3 2 27.74
178 Florida Gulf Coast 3 3 27.60
179 Morehead State 2 2 27.35
180 William and Mary 3 2 26.89
181 Duquesne 2 3 26.88
182 Old Dominion 1 5 26.40
183 Fresno State 3 2 26.34
184 Boston College 2 4 26.24
185 Seattle 1 1 25.93
186 Holy Cross 4 2 25.85
187 Sam Houston 2 3 25.62
188 Bryant 3 2 25.59
189 Northwestern State 1 1 25.58
190 Monmouth 3 3 25.50
191 Villanova 2 3 25.41
192 Columbia 2 2 25.14
193 Detroit 1 2 25.10
194 Princeton 2 3 25.07
195 St. Peter's 3 2 25.04
196 Loyola-Chicago 3 2 25.02
197 UNC-Greensboro 0 4 24.45
198 Tennessee Tech 2 1 24.37
199 Bethune-Cookman 2 4 24.33
200 High Point 2 2 24.09
201 Radford 2 3 23.84
202 Coastal Carolina 1 3 23.50
203 Cornell 3 4 23.09
204 San Diego 2 4 22.94
205 VMI 2 3 22.92
206 Cal State Fullerton 2 2 22.88
207 George Washington 2 2 22.87
208 Drexel 2 4 22.78
209 Georgia 2 4 22.75
210 Brown 2 3 22.62
211 Tennessee State 1 5 22.61
212 Denver 1 3 22.24
213 Auburn 2 4 22.23
214 Troy 4 2 22.22
215 Stetson 1 1 21.94
216 Montana State 1 3 21.86
217 USC Upstate 1 4 21.35
218 Drake 1 3 21.13
219 Vanderbilt 2 3 20.88
220 IUPUFW 2 3 20.75
221 San Jose State 1 2 20.63
222 Morgan State 1 3 20.47
223 Chattanooga 1 4 20.22
224 Norfolk State 2 4 20.22
225 New Hampshire 1 3 19.96
226 Houston Baptist 3 3 19.74
227 Northern Iowa 2 3 19.73
228 Texas State 2 3 19.71
229 South Dakota State 2 2 19.50
230 Mercer 1 3 19.38
231 Niagara 2 3 19.36
232 Fairfield 3 3 19.28
233 Portland 2 3 19.13
234 South Alabama 1 3 18.85
235 Missouri State 0 4 18.69
236 Florida International 1 2 18.55
237 Charleston Southern 0 4 18.51
238 Western Illinois 2 3 18.49
239 Southeast Missouri State 2 4 18.35
240 The Citadel 1 2 17.96
241 Rhode Island 1 5 17.65
242 East Tennessee State 1 3 17.36
243 North Carolina Central 1 4 17.31
244 Prairie View 1 5 16.97
245 Hartford 2 3 16.31
246 Nevada 3 2 16.12
247 Texas San Antonio 3 2 15.67
248 Northern Arizona 2 3 15.66
249 Sacred Heart 2 3 15.62
250 Northern Illinois 0 3 15.18
251 Colgate 3 4 15.14
252 UCSB 1 3 15.11
253 Siena 2 4 15.10
254 American 2 3 14.23
255 Boston University 0 5 13.81
256 SIU-Edwardsville 1 3 12.34
257 Northern Colorado 0 2 12.02
258 Cal State Bakersfield 0 5 11.87
259 Louisiana-Lafayette 1 4 11.83
260 IUPUI 2 4 11.83
261 Montana 2 1 11.83
262 Navy 2 4 11.77
263 Md.-Baltimore Co. 0 3 11.72
264 Dartmouth 1 2 11.51
265 Weber State 0 2 11.03
266 Jacksonville 2 4 10.94
267 UNC-Asheville 1 5 10.80
268 Winthrop 0 2 10.76
269 Hampton 0 5 10.64
270 Mississippi State 1 4 10.64
271 Central Arkansas 0 3 10.57
272 Delaware State 1 4 10.31
273 Western Carolina 1 4 10.09
274 Tennessee-Martin 0 4 9.89
275 Mount St. Mary's 1 3 9.53
276 UNC-Wilmington 3 3 9.07
277 Wagner 1 2 9.00
278 Northern Kentucky 0 4 8.93
279 UM-Kansas City 1 3 8.83
280 Georgia Southern 1 3 8.60
281 James Madison 1 4 8.46
282 Wofford 1 5 8.43
283 LIU-Brooklyn 0 4 8.42
284 Maine 1 4 8.16
285 Lipscomb 1 2 8.14
286 Buffalo 1 5 8.05
287 Toledo 1 4 7.71
288 Long Beach State 1 3 6.90
289 UTEP 1 4 6.43
290 Oakland 1 4 6.26
291 South Dakota 1 3 5.91
292 Yale 2 5 5.83
293 Southern 1 5 5.57
294 Coppin State 0 4 5.53
295 Florida Atlantic 2 3 5.26
296 Wisconsin-Milwaukee 1 4 5.21
297 South Carolina State 1 3 4.47
298 Marist 2 4 4.34
299 Howard 0 4 3.85
300 Portland State 0 3 3.34
301 Kennesaw State 1 6 2.79
302 Fairleigh Dickinson 2 3 2.25
303 New Orleans 1 2 2.21
304 Texas Pan-American 1 5 1.71
305 Pennsylvania 1 5 1.68
306 Texas AMCC 0 3 1.49
307 Mississippi Valley State 0 4 0.48
308 Manhattan 1 3 0.38
309 Idaho State 0 6 0.38
310 Eastern Washington 1 5 -0.33
311 Louisiana-Monroe 0 2 -0.38
312 Texas Southern 1 5 -1.01
313 Bowling Green 0 3 -1.23
314 North Carolina A&T 1 5 -1.37
315 UC Riverside 0 5 -2.04
316 McNeese State 0 3 -2.36
317 Arkansas-Pine Bluff 1 4 -3.03
318 Campbell 1 5 -3.33
319 Nebraska Omaha 2 4 -4.22
320 Fordham 1 4 -4.26
321 Alcorn State 1 3 -4.34
322 Florida A&M 1 5 -4.53
323 Binghamton 1 4 -4.86
324 Hofstra 2 4 -5.01
325 Appalachian State 0 4 -5.62
326 Utah Valley State 2 4 -6.73
327 Lamar 1 5 -7.05
328 Nicholls State 0 2 -7.26
329 North Dakota 0 3 -9.04
330 Austin Peay 2 3 -9.26
331 St. Francis (PA) 0 5 -9.40
332 Md.-Eastern Shore 0 6 -10.21
333 Rice 0 4 -10.59
334 Alabama State 0 5 -11.84
335 Samford 0 6 -14.73
336 Lafayette 1 5 -15.36
337 Alabama A&M 0 2 -15.51
338 Furman 0 3 -16.13
339 Chicago State 0 5 -16.92
340 Southeastern Louisiana 0 3 -17.07
341 North Florida 0 4 -18.05
342 Southern Utah 0 4 -18.69
343 Jackson State 0 2 -19.73
344 Longwood 1 5 -20.77
345 Liberty 0 6 -20.88
346 Presbyterian 0 6 -32.74
347 Grambling 0 5 -36.87
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