NORMAN — Tonight, huddled at coach Sherri Coale’s far east Norman home, the Oklahoma women will find out whether they’re headed for the NCAA tournament.
And, while the Sooners have no reason to fear being excluded from the Big Dance, where they’ll be dancing remains anybody’s guess.
Last season, OU had to believe it would be sent home and was, yet Lloyd Noble Center is not hosting the first two rounds of the tournament this time around.
Oklahoma City is hosting a regional, but the Sooners likely won’t receive a No. 4 seed or better, thereby failing to give the tourney selection committee reason to give them a geographic favor.
Still, even if the committee was so inclined, OU could still go anywhere, because while opening round sites have been determined in advance, what regional each site lines up with won’t be determined until the field is determined.
OU would appear to be in line for a No. 6, No. 7 or No. 8 seed in any of the four regionals: Oklahoma City, Norfolk, Spokane, Bridgeport.
The Sooners are not ranked, but are No. 28 in the NCAA’s very own Rating Percentage Index (RPI). RPIratings.com, which produces an independent RPI list, ranks OU as No. 30.
Among Big 12 teams, the Sooners trail No. 1 Baylor and No. 24 Iowa State in both the NCAA and RPIratings.com RPI lists.
Yet another interesting tidbit, RPIratings.com also computes an independent conference RPI in which the Big 12 ranks No. 1 in front of the Big 10, SEC, Big East and ACC, even as Baylor remains the Big 12’s only ranked team.
ESPN women’s college basketball bracketologist Charlie Creme has placed OU as the No. 8 seed in the Bridgeport Regional, meeting St. Joseph’s in the first round, with the winner to meet the winner of Connecticut and Navy.