Giant killer – Liberty, Akron and others may surprise in the first round


Every giant can fall.

If there were any lessons from this college basketball season, that must be it (now a state of San Diego). Waiting in the wings to unfold the March Madness brackets, perhaps this season more than ever, is a group of future losers looking to end the tournament's dream of early candidates. That's what this space is for: Giant killer.

It has gone through many iterations over the years, but the idea has long been using data-based analysis to identify Giant Kills, which we identify as any team with few. Best five seed lines underneath his opponent in the tournament pose a legitimate threat to win. So for the first time in 2020, we're looking at this area and trying to answer this question: Who is the first Giant Killer candidate we should watch?

The current method uses our Basketball Strength Index (BPI) as a basis and then builds on that by considering the style advantage between the two teams in a given game. You can read more about the methodology here in our introduction from 2018.

But back in 2020: Today we focus on a potential Round 1 Giant Killers – expected seed number 11 or worse – that could be devastating next month.

Note: All information on Wednesday.

Flame of freedom

Liberty is well positioned for a repeat performance as the Giant Killer. Last season, Flames upset the fifth seed in the state of Mississippi because it was largely a game with a target score of 30 points, 62.5% from Caleb Homesley. Now he and Scottie the big …

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