I was given a task to investigate how seeds have fared in the history of the BVL. So I began my research starting with the 2003 season which was the first season in which six teams were seeded and is as per our current rules. One of the best features of the BVL is that it not only works, the statistics are very realistic, and it is fair. In other words, the teams that fare well during the regular season generally fare well in the postseason. So let’s break it down.
From 2003 – 2016 there have been fourteen seasons in the league. In the first round of the playoffs the 3rd seed plays host to the 6th seed; while the 4th seed plays the 5th. A very interesting caveat is that a number of times the 3rd seed is actually the team with the second best record, however, they do not win a division and therefore do not get a bye. Well the 3rd seed has a record of 9-5 versus the 6th seed which is about a 2/3 success rate to advance to the Semi-Finals. That is a good rate, however, 35% of the time the 6th seed has been victorious in upsetting the #3 seed so it is not an impossible feat.
The 4th v 5th is a very close contested 8-6 record favoring the #4 seed. This makes sense as in a few occasions the two teams actually finished with the exact same won/loss record so there is not much difference between these two seeds. So more often that not the #3 and #4 seeds advance to the Semi-Finals.
In the Semi-Finals the story is as follows:
#1 Seed has advanced to the Leg Series 11 out of 14 times. That says that if you finished the season with the #1 team you are almost guaranteed a spot in the finals.
#2 Seed has advanced to the Leg Series 9 out of 14 times. Once again that is a very good number and means that more often than not the two best teams will find themselves playing for the Leg at the end.
#3 Seed has advanced only 4 out of 14 times. This was surprising to me as the #3 seed multiple times has the second best record. But when the #3 seed does not advance the #2 seed has advanced 4 out of 5 times.
#4 Seed has advanced to the Leg only twice out of 14 postseasons. That means that 8 times they have advanced to the Semi-Finals only to win twice.
#5 Seed has only once advanced to the Leg even though they have made the Semi-Finals 6 times.
#6 Seed has also only once advanced to the Leg out of five times in the Semis.
Now who has won the Leg……….and the surprise answer is………..
Not a surprise.
The #1 Seed has won the leg 6 times in 14 seasons. Now the interesting thing is that the #1 seed won the Leg in three consecutive seasons from 2004-2006. So in the last ten seasons the #1 Seed has only won the Leg three times. That is a 30% success rate in the last 10 years. Automatic championship it is NOT.
The #2 Seed has won the leg 3 times. These three championships have come in the last eight seasons. Which gives them a 30% success rate in the last 10 years as well. That is very even.
The #3 Seed has won the leg 3 times as well. They won the Leg in the first season researched (2003) and have won twice in the last ten. That is not bad as a 20% success rate in the last ten seasons. So out of the last ten seasons the 1-3 seeds have won 8 out of 10 times, and 12 times out of 14 seasons.
The #4 Seed has only won the Leg once. This was in 2010 which was Falls Church.
The #5 Seed has NEVER won the Leg.
The #6 Seed has won the Leg once which was in 2007 and guess who? Falls Church again. So that means that the ONLY times the 1-2-3 teams have not won the Leg has been due to Falls Church.
In summary, if you are the #1, #2, or #3 seed then you have a chance to win it all. They have accounted for ALL of the Leg winners for teams not residing in Falls Church.