The winless ones

It’s that time in the season again when people start tracking the winless teams and seeing if its possible that they’ll go the entire season without notching a victory. Ballin’ is a Habit listed the 18 winless teams, but it was this notice from UMBC that made me really start thinking about teams with a 0 in the win column. Did you know that three of them (Binghamton, UMBC and Hartford) play in the America East Conference. Three others (Alabama State, Alcorn State and Grambling) play in the SWAC. Well, there’s more you probably don’t realize!

The best team without a win this season according to Ken Pomeroy is Western Michigan. The Broncos have lost to four teams in the top 45 already thanks to play in the loaded Puerto Rico Tip-Off. The Broncos probably aren’t going to be on this list for long because they play Hope on Wednesday. I don’t know what Hope is, but I’ll bet they’re in for a long night. Also, WMU is still a MAC West contender, don’t let that record fool you.

Coming in a close second is Austin Peay. The Governors are an OVC favorite, even at 0-7. They’ve played five top 100 teams already this season, including a two-point loss to George Washington. They also lost in overtime to Detroit. While Murray State has the opposite record right now at 7-0, AP can still give the Racers a challenge in conference play. On the other hand, SIU-Edwardsville better hope it can get a win in one of its two non-Division I games. Its opponent on Wednesday, Robert Morris, isn’t an easy team to beat.

Another winless frontrunner is Morgan State. Todd Bozeman’s Bears are expected to once again rule the MEAC, but right now they’re 0-6. They’ve lost their last three games by a combined nine points. At UMBC on Dec. 14, is the first time Ken Pomeroy’s predictions thinks they’ll break through. It looks like it will be a four-way battle at the top of the MEAC between Norfolk State, Hampton, Coppin State and Morgan State. Another winless MEAC team, Florida A&M has two chances against non-Division I schools on Dec. 5 and Dec. 8 to get out of the club.

There are obviously 13 other winless schools, three of which reside in America East and are certainly the most fascinating of the bunch. They play each other home and away, so there’s obviously a possibility for wins then. Early in the season Hartford has looked especially terrible. The Hawks have one loss by single digits (by seven to Brown). They don’t play a non-Division I team. Currently Ken Pomeroy puts their chances of a winless season at 1.1%, pretty darn high considering there at least 22 more games to go. Hartford’s best chances for a win? One of these four games against their winless brethren: Jan. 15 vs. Binghamton, Jan. 17 vs. UMBC, Feb. 7 vs. UMBC or Feb. 12 against Binghamton.

The presence of Hartford on the schedule means that both Binghamton and UMBC’s chances of going winless are still less than 1% according to Ken Pomeroy. Of course the Retrievers’ chances took a big hit today with the announcement that Chris De La Rosa won’t be playing. Still, he only played in one game this season thus far and UMBC has managed to be competitive. While the Retrievers don’t play any non-Division I schools this season, UMBC does have a game at Towson on Dec.10 or those four conference games to notch a victory.

Binghamton has a chance to get its first win on Saturday against Army. The Bearcats, who are extremely young, will have had almost a week to prepare for the Cadets. If they don’t seize the opportunity, hopefully they grow up enough during conference play to pull off an upset or two. This though is the definition of a rebuilding season.

Are there more fun facts about other winless teams that I should know?

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