Posted on: March 11, 2009 9:05 am
Edited on: March 11, 2009 9:05 am

Give me the Heavyweights

I know I know I know...Cinderella strolls into the ball and steals the night...I get it. It is exciting to watch David beat Goliath. Exciting for about 10 minutes but then you realize the next game. You know that David can't possibly do it twice, three times or even a 4th! It ruins the tourney. I don't want to see Cleveland State in the Sweet 16. I don't want to see Western Kentucky in the Final Four. I want to see the Heavy weights and not the one year wonders who get on a hot streak. I know I am in the minority here. I know I will be criticized but I want to see the teams who have established themselves for years. I want Ohio St. vs Duke, UNC vs UCLA, Michigan St. vs Oklahoma! That makes for a great tourney! I have stated this before and to the dismay of many...Gonzaga is overrated because of their Cinderella status. I think they are slowly establishing themselves as a perennial basketball power by their consistent top 25 ranking but for a few years they were ranked because of their name. Let's face it. We will have a few upsets and maybe one of those 5-12 matchups that seemingly always gives us an upset makes it through to 16. They usually see the magic die. Sure as a fan I want to see UNC lose but I would much prefer to see them in the Final Four throwing haymakers with Uconn or Pitt. I would rather see the elite 8 filled with the top 8 teams in the nation slugging it out. Upsets are great for the school that is involved. It is great for the fans until their happiness turns to sadness when they find out that Cleveland St. has upset UCONN and now your elite 8 matchup is CL St. vs Oklahoma and not UConn. I know...then win the game! I feel genuinely good for the teams who pull the upset. I am happy for them and would not be upset if they made a deep run but I am just saying the tourney for me is about the heavy weight programs throwing round house rights at each other. This is the one argument I understand when it comes to College Football. We get heavyweights for the BCS games. Yes an occassional Boise St. gets in but for the most part we get the best teams in the nation battling each other. I want UConn, Pitt, UNC, Oklahoma, Louisville, Kansas etc... Big time coaches with big time players getting after each other. Call me a front runner but I will watch the Dodgers play the Mets. The Royals playing the A's...ehhhhhh? Texas vs. UCLA absolutely! Butler vs. Temple...I'll pass. So let the upsets happen but when it get's down to it and when 8 are left standing let's get the wanna bes out and have the best teams in the nation battling for the National Championship. I will leave you with this analogy. The hot lady you meet one night while on business out of town is fun and exciting and could give you a night to remember but your real love and excitement is your wife and kids at home. Cleveland St. may be sexy and exciting for a brief time but Oklahoma vs. Pitt is where it is at!!!


Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 24, 2009 10:59 am

Shaping up to be a crazy March!

Unbiased views from a college hoop fan!  I am not here to rip any teams but give what I think as March Madness rolls around.  Look forward to your responses!  So who is the best team in the Country?  That is as hard a question right now as no team has shown that they are heads and heels above the rest.  All have question marks that make winning 6 straight very hard to fathom.  They won't be playing bottom dwellers but the best of the college field.  I know there will be questions on bubble teams but my thoughts are that bubble teams don't win it and are usually out by the round of 16.  Let's go through the field...

  1. Pittsburgh- amazing guard play and intensity on defense.  I love the way Jamie Dixon has them playing and the toughness this groups seems to portray.  Losses at Louisville and Nova are respectable losses.  Both on the road at tough gyms.  Play great defense and limits opponents to 62 points per game while scoring 78. The problem...they are 45th in the nation by allowing over 40% of shots taken against them.  They give up quality shots and all it takes is one hot team to send you home.  If they contests shots and make teams earn baskets with tough shots they will be a very tough out.  Prediction- final 4
  2. UCONN...Ok I will say pick to win it.  Teams don't shoot well against them.  You have to hit outside shots to beat them.  They are big, strong, rebound well and always prepared.  Tourneys are won in the paint.  The later in the tourney, the more you need an inside game.  They will have to survive an early round scare with a hot shooting team and they will only become a tougher out as the tourney progresses. Don't see many flaws  and to  all the Pitt fans ...I am sorry...Thabeet won't get pushed around again on a neutral floor.  Win in March not February.  Prediction: Championship team
  3. Oklahoma - Boy are you Boomer Sooner fans going to be mad.  You had to win that game last night to show you can win without the big guy.  What you showed last night is you need Griffin to have a chance.  If UNC loses Hansborough do they still have a chance to win it all?  I say yes and I don't do the same with OU not having Griffin.  Head injuries stink.  He will for the rest of the season be one elbow from lala land as concussions come back so easily after one...Texas got you again.  PRediction 16 and out
  4. UNC - If they learn to play defense and show a dedication to it they have more talent than anyone.  They just refuse to play the d that will allow them to win it.  Many teams can score with the heels.  If they decide to use their athleticism to make some stops it will be the UNC invitational...Only problem is defense isn't a light switch and if they aren't playing it now, I don't know why they would start tomorrow.But how scary talented is this team? Prediction...Final 4
  5. Duke - sweet 16 run is in them but lack of interior toughness will get exploited.  One bad shooting night could embarrass them early in the tourney where guard play dominates the action but even if they are fortunate to survive, look at the teams above and tell me how they stop the interior play of those teams?  Yeah I am a fan and can't seem to lie to myself and answer that one.  Prediction 16 and out
  6. Memphis - Calipari has it going again but those disciplined teams seem to give them trouble.  I just don't see how they match up to the UCONNs or UNCs.  Pitt would spread them out.  I even see Duke giving them more than they can handle.  Memphis is a great story but they lost too much from last year's squad to make a serious run.  Prediction...16 and out
  7. Marquette - Dark horse here!  They really impress me!  Every time I sit down to break them down I leave saying "wow they are good" but they run the gauntlet of Uconn, Pitt, Louisville and Syracuse over the next two weeks...This will tell is they are pretenders or contenders.  We will find out if the cool aid is any good after next week.  That loss to Dayton just leaves me a bit weary on this team.  Prediction 16 and out
  8. Michigan State - My dark horse!  I love them and everything about Coach Izzo.  He gets the most out of what he has.  They are sound fundamentally and always focused.  They execute and are efficient.  They are made for deep runs into the tournament because Izzo makes the game into a game of possessions and execution rather than a scoring fest.  He puts your in tough spots and makes you make plays against a very tough hard nosed defense.  I love the team he has and a run into the elite 8 is very possible.  Prediction elite 8
  9. Louisville - God I love Rick Pitino.  His teams are ultra athletic and always peaking at the right time.  They have some bad losses so they are capable of breaking your hearts but I think he has them playing extremely well and has them ultra confident.  Upset special....Final four team.

I know I am opening up myself to critcism but this is just a brief look.  As the weeks go on I may change my mind but up to this point this is my humble view after watching a bazillion games

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 12, 2009 8:46 am
Edited on: February 12, 2009 8:48 am

Greatest atmosphere in college sports

Yes my team lost. They lost to the better team. Their weakness was exposed and still I think it will be their demise in the tournament but last nights Duke/UNC game is the reason why I love college basketball more than anything. If you don't like sports you would enjoy that game. The emotion and passion every kid plays with is remarkable. It is the way defense is suppose to be played. It is the effort you dream any of your players will give. It is the greatest atmosphere in all of college sports. I am not knocking a trip to The Swamp, the Golden Dome or Ohio St/ Michigan football. They are all special. That game last night just seems to be what is absolutely right in sports. When played at that level the game of basketball just seems poetic and graceful. The Cameron Crazies are absolutely wonderful. You find yourself watching them as much as the game itself. I was hoping speedo man would make another appearance. So I pose this question and as I have stated I am not here to bash anyones school or their rivalries. If you had one ticket and one ticket only for the rest of your life what sporting event would you go to? There is no doubt in my mind UNC/Duke at Cameron is my choice. It has nothing to do with the outcome of the game but the atmosphere, intensity and respect the two teams, the coaches and schools have for one another. It is more than a game. The names on the back of your shirt do not matter. The NBA prospects on the floor on that night do not matter. The rankings do not matter. The records do not matter. The only thing that matters is the name on the front on the jersey and how you will do anything in your power to make every student, alumnus and fan proud of your effort win, lose or draw!

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Duke/UNC
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