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What is ESPN BPI in March Madness

You might have heard the acronym BPI in reference to college basketball. You wonder, what is BPI in March Madness? Here’s a guide to help you understand the Basketball Power Index (BPI) and the rankings.

What is BPI?

ESPN invented the College Basketball Power Index or BPI. It is a stat that measures how far above or below average every team in the nation is and it projects how well the team will do. The index uses two different measurements to get a ranking. The first is BPI Offense and the second is BPI Defense.

BPI is calculated by finding the difference between these two different measurements. ESPN then has rankings listing every since team. For example, on March 8, 2023, Houston was number one among BPI teams with a ranking of 21.4. Tennessee, Alabama, UCLA, and UConn rounded out the top five. Purdue, the top team in the Big Ten, landed at seventh.

BPI Rankings and Terms

BPI Offense measures a team’s offensive strength compared to the average offense in the nation. The defensive metric measures a team’s defensive strength compared to the average defense among NCAA basketball teams. The scale is based on 70 possessions for a game.

Selection Sunday and the Selection Committee

The NCAA Tournament Selection Committee takes several factors into account when picking teams for the NCAA March Madness Basketball Tournament. These include RPI, strength of schedule, record, and more. Throughout the year, the BPI rating list is sent to the committee. It’s unclear if it impacts the final decision on which teams make the tournament.

68 teams are selected to make the tournament field for the Division I Basketball Tournament. Each team receives a seed from 1 to 16. Eight teams compete in the First Four in four play-in games. The Men’s College Basketball Tournament added the First Four back in 2011.

Using BPI Rankings for the NCAA Tournament Bracket

Should you look at BPI when picking your bracket? There are all sorts of tools you can use to make predictions on the tournament to win your bracket pool. There are plenty of analytics, stats, and more provided by popular websites. How you decide to pick teams throughout the tournament is up to you.

If you are looking to bet on NCAA Men’s Basketball or just hope to have a solid bracket in your family pool, you will have to consider your own strategy. The Men’s College Basketball Power Index might be a tool you use.

That doesn’t mean ESPN’s BPI is the only tool you should use as a predictor of a team’s performance. There are so many factors that impact teams during college basketball’s craziest time of year.

BPI correctly predicted the National Champion in the first three seasons of its existence with Kansas, North Carolina, and Duke.

For the 2022 Tournament, Gonzaga was number one in BPI. The Bulldogs were not able to win the national title. Kansas beat North Carolina in the final. the champion has usually been in the top 25. UConn ranked 25th in 2010-11 before winning it all.

What is ESPN BPI in March Madness FAQs

What does BPI stand for?

BPI stands for College Basketball Power Index. It was created by ESPN.

Does the NCAA Selection Committee use BPI to decide which teams make the tournament?

It’s unclear if the NCAA committee takes into account a team’s BPI rankings. The committee likely uses several tools such as team strength, strength of schedule (SOS), strength of record, and more to decide what teams get in.

How many teams make March Madness?

There are 36 at-large bids and 32 automatic bids to make up the 68-team tournament field. The automatic qualifiers have to win their conference tournament.

Who is the last team ranked number one in BPI to win the National Title?

 Virginia won the National Title in 2019 after being number one among Division I teams in BPI.