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Figures That Tell a Story

Dec. 09, 1957
Dec. 09, 1957

Table of Contents
Dec. 9, 1957

Acknowledgments
Fisherman's Calendar
Coming Events
The American Game
Spectacle
  • Basketball's boom has triggered a chain reaction of new multimillion-dollar arenas equipped to handle great crowds in a setting of colorful, geometric beauty

Art On The Court
  • Behind the apparently aimless swirl of 10 young men racing down a polished hardwood floor and the dynamic disarray which they present beneath the basket, there exist certain basic, even classic, patterns and skills. In instants of perfection, they also become an art, indigenous to this sport alone: the shooting, playmaking and defense which make up the game of basketball

Dixie's Hero
Quel Homme!
Yesterday
Figures
19th Hole: The Readers Take Over
Pat On The Back

Figures That Tell a Story

The perennial hot debate about which conference plays the best brand of basketball is analyzed in a set of charts specially prepared for the partisan fans

CONFERENCE RECORDS, 1956-57

This is an article from the Dec. 9, 1957 issue Original Layout

One excellent test of comparative conference strength is the won-lost record that the teams compile against nonconference opponents. The flaw in this test, however, is the fact that each conference's outside schedule differs in quality of opposition. To balance the first test, therefore, it is necessary to compare it with the conference's record against the top 20 teams in the country, according to the final ratings of the Associated Press poll. Below are both of these cumulative records for the 1956-57 basketball season.

View this article in the original magazine

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1 Oklahoma Slate, though now a member of the Big Eight conference, is included in the Missouri Valley compilation, contributing a 6-5 record, including one runner-up and one fourth-place finish. Not included with the Missouri Valley total is the record of Bradley in the 1954, and 1955 tournaments, when it was not a conference member. Bradley's record for those two years was 6-2, including one second-place finish.
2 Texas Tech, though now a member of the Southwest Conference, is included in the Border Conference total, contributing a 0-1 record.

If the statistics on these pages give a good indication of which conferences are the strongest, they also demonstrate that some are surprisingly weak, namely the Southern and the Skyline. The current Southern Conference membership has not won an NCAA tournament game in any of the last 10 years, has put only two among the top 10 and last year showed up badly against nonconference opponents in general (38-63) and the best 20 in particular (0-9). The Skyline was 37-51 against only fair outside competition, a dismal 3-20 against the best and shows no strength whatsoever in the AP poll or the NCAA tourney. Another surprise is how badly the Southeastern, with three teams among the top 15, did against the best of the rest in the nation (2-12).

Rating very high on the basis of good showings in all categories is the Big Seven. The fact that almost one-third of its outside games were against the very best indicates a strong schedule; its 45-16 record (best in the nation) indicates a strong league. But each reader should judge for himself on the basis of the facts. That is exactly what we suggest you do.

THE BEST FROM EACH CONFERENCE
Listed below are the teams that posted the best won and lost records of their conferences against outside opponents during the 1956-57 season. North Carolina, rated the top team in the country and winner of the NCAA title, also compiled the finest nonconference record.

TEAM AND CONFERENCE

WON-LOST

North Carolina (ACC)

13-0

Wake Forest (ACC)

9-0

Tennessee (SEC)

8-0

Iowa State (Big 8)

8-0

Columbia (Ivy)

9-1

UCLA (Pacific Coast)

9 1

Purdue (Big Ten)

7-1

Illinois (Big Ten)

7-1

Bradley (Missouri Valley)

13-2

Vermont (Yankee)

12-3

TCU (Southwest)

8-2

Tenn. Tech (Ohio Valley)

8-2

Idaho State (Rocky Mountain)

13-4

Fresno State (WCAC)

9-3

Ohio (Mid-American)

8-3

Wash. & Lee (Southern)

8-3

Utah (Skyline)

9-4

Hardin-Simmons (Border)

10-6