How Will the Big 12 Play Out (Final Edition)

At this point, we have a pretty good idea of how things are going to play out in terms of Big 12 Tournament seedings.  Kansas and Kansas State will almost certainly be 1-2 in the conference tourney (I'd run through the scenarios of what would happen if K-State lost to Iowa State, but ... K-State's not losing to Iowa State, so it's not worth the time).  OSU will likely be the 7-seed, and the winner of Colorado-Tech will be the 8-seed ... and they will probably face off in the 8-9 game four days later.  Iowa State is almost certainly the 11, and Nebraska is the 12.

So what don't we know?  As always, let's start with the current standings:

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 14-1 28-2
2 Kansas State 11-4 24-5
3 Baylor 10-5 23-6
4 Texas A&M 10-5 21-8
5 Missouri 10-5 22-8
6 Texas 9-6 23-7
7 Oklahoma State 8-7 20-9
8 Colorado 5-10 14-15
9 Texas Tech 4-11 16-13
10 Oklahoma 4-11 13-16
11 Iowa State 3-12 14-16
12 Nebraska 2-13 14-16


We all know the most likely scenario heading into this weekend: ATM and Baylor avoid upsets, and Mizzou ends up the 5-seed, facing Nebraska on Wednesday.  And really, that's probably okay.  At this point, I've gotten over my fear of Nebraska (previously, we mentioned that we'd rather fall to #6 and face Iowa State, but ... after this Tuesday night, I say no thanks to that), which I realize probably means doom, but if Mizzou ends up behind both Baylor and ATM, then ... well, they deserve it, don't they?  They had chances to beat both of those teams in the final minute and couldn't get it done, and the consequences of that are that you might have to play Nebraska on Wednesday.  Sounds fair to me.

But if BU or ATM get upset ...

March 2-8: Weekend Games

In essence, there are three weekend games that matter to Mizzou, and they happen in succession.  ATM tips off at Lloyd Noble at 11, then Mizzou plays Kansas at 1, then Baylor hosts Texas at 3.  Perfectly timed, really.  (I smell multiple live threads!)

Saturday
11:00 am (ESPN): Texas A&M at Oklahoma (ATM 69%)
12:30 pm (ESPN 360: Nebraska at Oklahoma State (OSU 84%)
1:00 pm (CBS): Kansas at Missouri (KU 56%)
3:00 pm (ESPN): Texas at Baylor (BU 63%)
3:00 pm (ESPN 360): Texas Tech at Colorado (CU 66%)
5:00 pm (ESPN 360): Iowa State at Kansas State (KSU 92%)

As you see, KU's odds of beating Mizzou moved from 53% to 56% after each team's mid-week efforts (KU thumping #2 KSU, Mizzou almost falling to #11 ISU).  Regardless, it's still basically a tossup, and Mizzou will have to play out of their minds to beat the Jayhawks.  But is that even the most important game of the weekend from Mizzou (from a seeding perspective)?  Nope.

Below are the scenarios (in descending order of likelihood) for the results of three games: ATM-OU, KU-MU, and UT-BU.  For the below tables, we're assuming that the favorites (OSU, CU, KSU) win the other three games.

If Kansas, A&M and Baylor win... (24.3%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 15-1 29-2
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Baylor 11-5 24-6
4 Texas A&M 11-5 22-8
5 Missouri 10-6 22-9
6 Texas 9-7 23-8
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
10 Oklahoma 4-12 13-17
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


I guess it's important to point out that the most likely scenario (KU-ATM-BU) still only happens one out of four times.  The possibility of some sort of upset is still pretty high.

If Missouri, A&M and Baylor win... (19.1%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 14-2 28-3
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Baylor 11-5 24-6
4 Texas A&M 11-5 22-8
5 Missouri 11-5 23-8
6 Texas 9-7 23-8
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
10 Oklahoma 4-12 13-17
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


Obviously the most likely upset of the three is MU over KU, and while that would obviously bring about its own level of celebration (if Zaire Taylor somehow made the winning shot again, he would potentially move straight to #1 on the list of Most Beloved Tigers Since Melvin Booker), it wouldn't make a damn bit of difference in Mizzou's seed unless it's accompanied by another upset.

If Kansas, A&M and Texas win... (14.3%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 15-1 29-2
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Texas A&M 11-5 22-8
4 Missouri 10-6 24-7
5 Texas 10-6 24-7
6 Baylor 10-6 23-7
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
10 Oklahoma 4-12 13-17
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17

 

If Mizzou, A&M and Texas win... (11.2%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 14-2 28-3
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Texas A&M 11-5 22-8
4 Missouri 11-5 23-8
5 Texas 10-6 24-7
6 Baylor 10-6 23-7
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
10 Oklahoma 4-12 13-17
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


As you see above, for seeding purposes Mizzou is actually more reliant on Texas than themselves right now.  If A&M and Texas win, it doesn't matter what happens to Mizzou.  That's unfortunate, of course, since Texas a) is playing in Waco and b) hasn't been anything resembling reliable lately.

If Kansas, OU, and Baylor win... (10.9%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 15-1 29-2
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Baylor 11-5 24-6
4 Texas A&M 10-6 21-9
5 Missouri 10-6 22-9
6 Texas 9-7 23-8
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Oklahoma 5-11 14-16
10 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


Here's perhaps the most annoying scenario.  OU actually beats ATM at 11am ... and then Mizzou loses and doesn't get a bye.

If Missouri, OU and Baylor win... (8.6%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 14-2 28-3
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Baylor 11-5 24-6
4 Missouri 11-5 23-8
5 Texas A&M 10-6 21-9
6 Texas 9-7 23-8
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Oklahoma 5-11 14-16
10 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


If Mizzou and OU win, we no longer have to count on Texas for anything...

If Kansas, OU and Texas win... (6.4%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 15-1 29-2
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Missouri 10-6 22-9
4 Texas 10-6 24-7
5 Baylor 10-6 23-7
6 Texas A&M 10-6 21-9
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Oklahoma 5-11 14-16
10 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


Now we get to the really fun scenarios.  Mizzou loses ... and ends up third.

If Missouri, OU and Texas win... (5.0%)

Seed Team Conf. Overall
1 Kansas 14-2 28-3
2 Kansas State 12-4 25-5
3 Missouri 11-5 23-8
4 Texas 10-6 24-7
5 Baylor 10-6 23-7
6 Texas A&M 10-6 21-9
7 Oklahoma State 9-7 21-9
8 Colorado 6-10 15-15
9 Oklahoma 5-11 14-16
10 Texas Tech 4-12 16-14
11 Iowa State 3-13 14-17
12 Nebraska 2-14 14-17


Yeah, no surprise that these two have the lowest probability.

Overall, here's how it looks:

Overall Probabilities

  • 3-Seed: 11.4%
  • 4-Seed: 34.1%
  • 5-Seed: 54.3%

Now let's play out how Saturday will go.  When MU and KU tip off, ATM and OU will be wrapping up.  If ATM wins, a 3-seed is out the door...

If A&M Beats OU...

  • 3-Seed: 0.0%
  • 4-Seed: 37.0%
  • 5-Seed: 63.0%

But if OU unexpectedly pulls off an upset (unlikely, but unlike Texas they've at least been playing better recently ... plus they're at home), then suddenly things get interesting.

If OU Beats ATM...

  • 3-Seed: 36.9%
  • 4-Seed: 27.8%
  • 5-Seed: 35.3%

So if ATM beats OU, Mizzou's bye chances rest solely on Texas' ability to pull off an upset.  Easy to figure that one out.  But let's break out what might happen if OU wins.

If OU & MU win...

  • 3-Seed: 37.0%
  • 4-Seed: 63.0%
  • 5-Seed: 0.0%

In this scenario, the BU-UT game no longer matters.

If OU & KU win...

  • 3-Seed: 37.0%
  • 4-Seed: 0.0%
  • 5-Seed: 63.0%

In other words...if OU and Missouri win, Mizzou gets a bye.  If Texas wins, Mizzou gets a bye.  Any other scenario, and it's Mizzou-Nebraska mid-afternoon on Wednesday.  And again ... it's nice to still be in the hunt for a bye, but in the end, Mizzou made their own bed here by losing to both Baylor and ATM in the last minute.  Come through in either of those games, and the scenarios all change.  Of course, without the Worst 13 Minutes Ever, it's possible that Mizzou's end-of-February improvement doesn't happen.  That does seem like it was a bit of a turning point in the season, at least until Justin Safford's injury derailed things at least temporarily.

Anyway ... go OU (gag), go Mizzou, and go Texas (gag).

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