Wellsie chimes in on Canada West Playoff format

From our Southern Alberta correspondent Dave Wells…


I know there is confusion out there about how Canada West teams will qualify for playoffs this year and how the playoffs will be set up. Heck, two of my friends (Richard Taylor and Nick Tait) who watch the loop very, very closely weren’t sure as of this week.

I did a bit of research and the following is the easiest explanation I could find for this 17-team loop where no two teams have the same schedule (literally) and every team does not play six opponents:  From a release on www.CanadaWest.org :

2016-17 playoffs will feature the top 12 teams based on win/loss record, playing a bracketed post-season structure over a three-week period. The top four teams will receive a bye in the first week of the playoffs, which will feature four best-of-three series.

The following week will consist of four best-of-three quarterfinals, leading to the Final Four hosted by the highest remaining seed. 

Playoff seeding will be determined by a rating percentage index (RPI), which will be calculated using a combination of winning percentage, opponents’ winning percentage, and opponents’ opponents’ average winning percentage. The conference RPI will be published on a weekly basis following the conference’s December break.

Back to Wellsie: So, to me, the key points to remember are:

  • records determine who make the playoffs, but
  • RPI determines how those teams are seeded in the playoffs.
    Thus, if you are a fan of a team fighting to make the playoffs I’d imagine record is the measure you’d be most interested in, but if you are more concerned with hosting any playoffs, right up to the Final Four, RPI will be your most important data.

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