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Joward NWAC Basketball Power Rankings - January 9

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Joward NWAC Women's Power Rankings

Centralia women finally ascend to top spot

With the Holiday Tournaments behind us — and a host of fascinating results with them — we can begin to take a look at the upcoming region schedules. The South looks like it'll be a grudge match between Umpqua, Clackamas and Lane once again. Centralia looks awesome through their first 14 games of the year, and has a good chance of blowing through the Western Region, while Spokane, Wenatchee Valley, Treasure Valley and Walla Walla each have a shot in the East. 

We'll get to each of these match ups as the rankings roll on, but a few highlights from the last week: former No. 1 Umpqua got rolled by 39 points by Snow College, current No. 1 Centralia beat Snow College by two and Clackamas is having another one of those preseason runs with five in a row.

There are a few questions which stand out as we enter the next section of the year. Spokane looks like a leader in the East, but how will they stand up to decidedly tougher competition once they've had to run through the brutal Eastern Region schedule? Umpqua has lead us on several times over the past few years with great preseason play, only to fade as the season continues. Will they hold up their end of the bargain?

And lastly, we rolled out a new efficiency rating system last week with fairly positive results. This edition adds a few things, including a free-throws per game stat which helps to show exactly why certain teams can accomplish their high points-per-possession numbers.

Pace is determined by taking a team's total points and dividing it by their average points-per-possession to get the number of possessions they've played. Total possessions divided by games is what the "pace" number is.

Offensive efficiency is what a team would score if they played at the average pace of the top-16 teams, which is 67 possessions per game. Current average points are in parenthesis next to each ranked team's efficiency numbers.

From this point on, expect the rankings to be published about every two weeks on Sunday or Monday until the NWAC tournament arrives in early March. Updated coaches rankings, released Jan. 8, have been posted under each team's rating.

Women's Top Four
1. Centralia
2. Clackamas
3. Spokane
4. Umpqua

View complete rankings and team by team analysis


Joward NWAC Men's Power Rankings

Bellevue men lead rankings into region play

Last year we always assumed the Southern Region would shake itself out and, being stubborn, it never did. The South has always gotten flack for as long as these rankings have been a thing, and yet they've managed to capture two of the last four NWAC titles. Once again, it looks like the South is being its good ol' self, but the Western Region has joined in the fray. Neither region has a standout as of yet, with four teams legitimately in the mix at the start of region play.

The Northern and Eastern regions, however, are entirely different. Bellevue and Edmonds have emerged as frontrunners with entirely differing offensive styles in the Northern Region, while Big Bend, Wenatchee Valley and Spokane are clearly ahead of the remaining teams in the Eastern Region with Columbia Basin making a solid run at relevancy. 

In the last set, we used a beta system to rank a team's pace by adding and dividing and multiplying some numbers together and calling it good. The league has stepped forward and offered the actual possession stats, and we rolled out a new efficiency rating system last week with the women to fairly positive results. This edition [Get the top-16 teams] adds a few things, including a free-throws per game stat which helps to show exactly why certain teams can accomplish their high points-per-possession numbers.

Pace is determined by taking a team's total points and dividing it by their average points-per-possession to get the number of possessions they've played. Total possessions divided by games is what the "pace" number is.

Offensive efficiency is what a team would score if they played at the average pace of the top-16 teams, which is 67 possessions per game. Current average points are in parenthesis next to each ranked team's efficiency numbers.

From this point on, expect the rankings to be published about every two weeks on Sunday or Monday until the NWAC tournament arrives in early March. Coaches rankings, which were released on Jan. 8, can be found beneath each team's rating.

1. Bellevue
2. Edmonds
3. Big Bend
4. Wentachee Valley

View complete rankings and team by team analysis


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