New-look Canada West basketball format set to tip off

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NEW WESTMINSTER – With the dawn of a new Canada West basketball regular season comes a new format, as the conference regular season opens Friday, November 4.

 

2016-17 marks a new look for both Canada West men’s and women’s basketball, as all 17 members will play under a unified format, with the elimination of the Pioneer and Explorer divisions, which were used the last two seasons.

 

The new format features a 20-game regular season schedule, with each team playing four geographical, or historical opponents every year, with games against six of the remaining 12 opponents every other year.

 

COMPLETE 2016-17 MEN’S SCHEDULE

 

COMPLETE 2016-17 WOMEN’S SCHEDULE

 

Over a four-year rotation in the schedule, each team will play every team in the conference at least twice, and will visit every gym in Canada West at least once.

 

The format had been approved at the 2015 Canada West annual general meeting, and also features a tweaked playoff format.

 

The top 12 teams based on winning percentage will earn post-season berths, with playoff ranking based on each team’s Rating Percentage Index (RPI) from the regular season. RPI will be used in order to account for the various strengths of schedule.

 

The top four teams based on RPI will receive a bye in the first week of the playoffs, which will feature four best-of-three series. The following week will consist of four best-of-three quarter-finals, leading to the Final Four hosted by the highest remaining seed.

 

The season tips off this Friday with a full slate of games including an early-season matchup between two women’s teams expected to compete for the conference title, as the Regina Cougars host the Victoria Vikes.

 

Regina topped the annual coaches pre-season poll with 256 points, earning 16 of a possible 16 first-place votes, while Victoria came in third with 215 points – just behind the defending conference champion Saskatchewan Huskies (229 pts.).

 

On the men’s side, the defending Canada West champion and national finalist Calgary Dinos earned the nod from their competitors, as the coaches pegged the Dinos the frontrunners in the poll with 252 points and 12 first-place votes.

 

For a complete look at the men’s conference season preview, click here, and for the women’s, here.

 

2016-17 CW men’s basketball pre-season coaches poll

Team / Points (first-place votes)

1. Calgary / 252 (12) 10. Thompson Rivers / 134
2. UBC / 243 (4) 11. Fraser Valley / 107
3. Alberta / 203 (1) 12. MacEwan / 104
4. Manitoba / 197 13. Mount Royal / 97
5. Saskatchewan / 194 14. UBCO / 58
6. Winnipeg / 176 15. Brandon / 54
7. Victoria / 150 16. UNBC / 35
8. Lethbridge / 144 17. Trinity Western / 30
9. Regina / 135  

 

 

2016-17 CW women’s basketball pre-season coaches poll

Team / Points (first-place votes)

1. Regina / 256 (16) 10. UBCO / 124
2. Saskatchewan / 229 (1) 11. Brandon / 112
3. Victoria / 215 12. Thompson Rivers / 104
4. Alberta / 205 13. Lethbridge / 73
5. UBC / 200 14. UNBC / 70
6. Calgary / 173 15. MacEwan / 63
7. Winnipeg / 155 16. Manitoba / 39
8. Fraser Valley / 137 17. Mount Royal / 29
9. Trinity Western / 125  

 

NOTES: 1st-place vote worth 16 pts., 2nd 15 pts, 3rd 14 pts. etc.

 

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