Not that I necessarily want to rehash the discussion that went on when the schedule was originally released, but I thought it worth noting that the schedule really played out like many of us hoped when it was announced (unfortunately, the team hasn’t taken advantage of the leverage that this schedule provided them). Props to former DOBO Jon Perry for putting it together.
PSU currently has the #30th ranked schedule strength in the country (LINK Subscription required) and that will almost assuredly improve as we move through conference play.
The secret to putting together a good schedule for RPI purposes is finding those teams that will wind up doing well in their conference races. Ken Pomeroy has just run a simulation of all the conference races and has projected the champions of each of the conferences (Parts one and two of Pomeroy’s simulations). Here’s how Pomeroy projects PSU’s opponents will do in their conference races (not all teams will have a listing because Pomeroy only ranks teams that have projected to win the conference at least once in his 10,000 simulation runs).
Lehigh - 3rd in the Patriot
Saint Joseph’s - not ranked
Fairfield - 2nd in the MAAC
Central Connecticut - 5th in the NEC
Mississippi - 4th in the SEC
Furman - 3rd in the SoCon
Maryland - 4th in the ACC
Duquesne - 3rd in the A10
Mt St. Mary’s - 10th in the NEC
Virginia Tech - not ranked
Maine - 2nd in America East
That’s a bunch of teams near the top of their conferences. The only game on the schedule that probably can’t be justified would be Mt St Mary’s. Va Tech isn’t ranked but scheduling any Big Six school is OK. St Joe’s also isn’t ranked but there are plenty of reasons for having any Big Five Philly school on a home and home rotation.
We can revisit this at the end of the season when the conferences have sorted themselves out but, at least from Pomeroy’s projections, this looks to be playing out as an almost perfect schedule.