Originally Posted by i seen hippos
Which is why I said, "(And yes, I know that even those programs have had their down years, but you know what I mean.)" I didn't mean compared to those programs specifically over this exact period of time. I just meant compared to programs who, over history, have established themselves as the game's true elite. If you want to talk about just this decade, for that matter, Illinois is arguably a Top 5 program and definitely Top 10, but we both know that isn't the case.
And don't overstate the importance of the tournament. It's the most important thing, but it isn't the only thing. Winning conference titles, consistently winning 25-30 games without down years interspersed too often, producing All-Americans, along with tournament success. I think everything needs to be taken into account when talking about who the best programs are.