02 March 2012

Is Dayton Desirable?

It's hard for us to believe, but we continue to see a trickling of opinions from some NU fans that they'd rather be in the NIT than Dayton.  We have already dismissed this opinion out of hand because it is so ridiculous given NU's embarrassing O-for-NCAAs history.  We do appreciate these opinions as it has given us reason to reflect upon the prospects of going to Dayton, and we have come to the conclusion that Dayton may actually be the best destination for NU.  Hear us out.

  1. Location.  Dayton is a 5.5 hour drive from Evanston.  NU alumni are spread out around the country, but there is a significant concentration in Chicago/Midwest as well as on east coast.  
  2. Second Round Location.  Dayton winners play next game in either Columbus or Louisville.  Same locational arguments for Dayton as Columbus/Louisville.
  3. Timing.  Games on either Tuesday or Wednesday.  NU's opponent would have limited time to prep for NU's atypical offense/defense.  Advantage NU.
  4. Opponent.  NU would play a peer.  Given game timing we like our chances in a peer game.
  5. Second Round Opponent.  NU would be playing in prime upset game in Second Round.  Early on in the game NU would have the advantage of already playing through NCAAs jitters on Tue/Wed.
The biggest downside we can see is that a thin NU squad is not ideally suited for an extra game and a two day turnaround for Round 2.  This counterargument against Dayton has merit but ultimately we think all of the above factors easily eclipse this concern.