by Barca Blog (Photo by Jimmy Jones)
Vanderbilt climbed three spots to No. 13 in the latest Rating Percentage Index (RPI) released Tuesday afternoon.
Why is this important? The NCAA selection committee uses the RPI as one of the primary statistics to evaluate the tournament field.
Going into the final week of the regular season, the Commodores (39-13, 15-10 SEC) are a lock to make the tournament, but also have a strong chance to host a regional -- a luxury for 16 of the 64 teams in postseason play. Vanderbilt holds the third-highest RPI in the top-rated conference at the moment, a fact that won’t be ignored by the committee on Selection Monday (May 31).
VU can strengthen its resume with a series win over Arkansas (No. 8 RPI), another team vying for one of those coveted host spots. The two teams will face off starting Thursday at 6 p.m. CT at Hawkins Field.
Overall, nine SEC teams were listed in the RPI Top 30.
SEC in NCAA RPI
4 - Florida
8 - Arkansas
13 - Vanderbilt
14 - South Carolina
15 - Alabama
16 - Auburn
22 - LSU
26 - Ole Miss
39 - Tennessee
70 - Mississippi State
114 - Georgia