Some Tape-Delayed Tourney Thoughts
Adam Kilgore here, and you know what that means: more pandering to that sinister young male demographic, which may be the only thing that can save newspapers at this point (Only kidding, Rennie). Sorry for the lack of posts of the past couple days; it's been a busy time for all us here, particularly Steinberg, who is out-Bogging all of us despite the fact that his first born child is not yet two weeks old. Steinberg even called me last night because there was inadvertantly two No. 1s in my local poll vote. Impressive, to say the least.
Once we all arrive at our respective sites and start gathering some excess, Bog-worthy material, the posts should increase (and your work productivity will plummet).
For, some things that most people aren't talking about as much that I think they should be. Or, at least things I think people aren't talking about, because I'm knee-deep in copy for tomorrow's paper and haven't been watching all the shows/reading all the blogs/listening to the radio so much.
-Watch for Eastern Kentucky against North Carolina. There's more on this from me in the paper tomorrow in a story about the possible success of 16 seeds, so I don't want to get into it too much. I'm not saying pick EKU in your bracket, but it should give the Heels trouble because of the style it plays. Here's something I can't say in the paper: the line on this game is 26.5. If you like money, you might want to think about taking those points. If you don't like money, enter a bracket pool against Patrick Stevens.
-People keep comparing Texas to Syracuse in 2003 because of the Durant-Melo thing, which makes sense. But there's little metion that both teams used freshman point guards with a score-first mentality: Gerry McNamara for Syracuse and D.J. Augustin for Texas. The biggest difference, though, is that Jim Boeheim was much better at reigning in McNamara than Rick Barnes is with Augustin. The SU offense ran through Melo much more than Texas' does Durant, as it absoltely, positively should. I'm not sure which is worse - watching Calvin Johnson play with Reggie Ball, or Durant with Barnes and Augustin. Also, there's no one on Texas who can guard like Kueth Duany. Not even close.
-Why is Niagara playing tonight? The Purple Eagles come a conference, the MAAC, that isn't THAT awful and had one of the best point guards in America, Marist's Jared Jordan, playing in it. They won their last 12 games. 12 in a row! As John Feinstein will argue more eloquently than I, Illinois and Arkansas - which I'm assuming were the final two teams to make the field - should have played for their 12 seed. Niagara and Florida A&M earned their way into the field, and they have nothing to prove, so much making them play tonight is unfair. The play-in game, as currently constiuted, is a terrible idea. That being said, I can't wait to watch it.
-Purdue getting a nine is totally insane. It shouldn't even be in the tournament over Drexel.
-Did you know that Tom Crean is playing Tom Izzo in the first round? Weird that isn't getting more attention, no?
Also, so I can further become an object of ridicule, my picks: I've got the same Final Four as Prisbell - Kansas, Florida, Georgetown and Texas A&M - with Florida over A&M for the title. I've got a pretty panzy-ish Elite Eight, with Texas the highest seed. The outliers in my Sweet 16 are VCU, Old Dominion, Nevada, which I'd imagine are all pretty popular upset picks. So nothing too wild from me. I would have loved to pull the trigger on VCU over UCLA and UNLV over Wisconsin, but decided Bo Ryan and Ben Howland were just too good of coaches.
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