NCAA Tournament Quick Thoughts

  • Yes,  I know the Big East only saw two of eleven teams advance into the Sweet Sixteen, however seven did advance to the round of 32, which is over 1/5 of the field.
  • Arguments are made that the only reason two Big East teams made the Sweet 16 is because they were able to beat other Big East teams. On the other side of that coin, it also means that perhaps two of the five teams to lose in the round of 32 lost simply because they played Big East teams.
  • Watching Butler run their offense is a treat. The difference in the movement off the ball for the Bulldogs compared to Pittsburgh was night and day. Bradley Stevens is absolutely one of the elite coaches in America.
  • Jimmer is the truth. Period. I didn’t see BYU surviving the opening weekend without Davies. Not only did they, they did so rather impressively.
  • Michigan basketball is on the way back.
  • Which team benefited most from the pod system, and from the court they got to play on during the opening weekend? I think it’s safe to say Duke and North Carolina share that, as both squeaked out of the round of 32 with close victories in Charlotte. It makes you wonder what would have happened had they been on a truly neutral court.
  • The fact that Xavier and Michigan State both have made the Sweet 16 for the straight years prior to this tournament was, and still is, irrelevant to this years tournament. The squad that started that run for each bears very little resemblance to the ones that were ousted in the opening round.
  • For the first time since Los Angeles did it in 2007, a city has two teams in the Sweet 16. The city? Richmond.
  • Seth Greenberg, please shut-up now. You aren’t even the second best team in your state, you absolutely have done nothing to show why your Virginia Tech Hokies belonged in the tournament more than the VCU Rams. All the Rams have done is shown they belong with the big boys, while your Hokies can’t get out of round two in the Not Important Tournament.
  • Trey Thompkins and Travis Leslie, please return to Athens. If you do, the 2012 NCAA Tournament run could be special for the folks in Athens.
  • Have you ever seen a dumber foul than the one Sheldon Mack committed at the end of the Pittsburgh/Butler game? The answer is no. Well, except for the fact that Pittsburgh committed an even more egregious foul on the other end.
  • Picking upsets isn’t the way to win a bracket pool, but it’s a way to make watching the opening round much more fun, and feel some vindication when you nail one.
  • I did pretty well with the upset picks. Richmond, George Mason, and Gonzaga delivered. Utah State, Old Dominion and Georgia took their opponent down to the bitter end while Clemson just tired down the stretch in a game they were in throughout. Belmont was the only one who kinda make me look silly.
  • Speaking of Clemson, the scheduling of this tournament screwed them pretty royally. No way they should have been playing in the first game of the tournament after playing in the First Four, especially considering they didn’t even get in ’till about 5 a.m. on Wednesday morning. Pretty inexcusable if you ask me.
  • Was there any game more exciting to watch throughout its entirety than Arizona against Memphis. Neither possession seemed to last more than 12 seconds, and the game was played at break-neck pace. It also had plenty of drama down the stretch. Two very, very athletic teams. Memphis could be very good next year.
  • Florida State just plays ridiculous defense, period. They are an extremely tough out, reminds me of some of those old Wisconsin teams that seemed to regularly crash the party.
  • On the note of the Badgers, things have shaped up rather nicely for them. Butler’s offense won’t catch them as off guard and out of position as it did Pittsburgh. Watching Taylor go head to head with Mack is going to be a real treat.
  • Missed free throws make the end of college basketball games in March the most exciting thing in sports.
  • At this point, I don’t see how anyone can pick against Ohio State. Everyone else has looked extremely vulnerable, with Kansas perhaps being the second strongest. Right now, Ohio State though is playing head and shoulders better than anyone else.

 

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