LAS VEGAS - The skeptics had already come out, launching a preemptive strike to discredit Gonzaga's case for a No. 1 seed in preparation for when the brackets are unveiled on Sunday. Zags coach Mark Few and his players have heard it over and over. Gonzaga doesn't play in a "real" league, that the WCC is a mid-major conference. The Bulldogs are a fraud, and will bow out early yet again.
Just your latest reminder that college basketball is a ridiculous sport, the best sport for drama on a nightly basis. That's Larry Drew bailing out UCLA against Washington. Every night we can realistically expect at least one -- but more like three or four -- outcomes that make us perk up and pay attention. College hoops is on a ridiculous roll right now.
So who's gone where? Why? What does it mean? Who benefits and who suffers? I'm laying it out for you here, just as conference play gets underway and these programs begin playing in new sheds on the road, fledgling rivalries just out of the box, still smelling like plastic. Try your best to not be confused; try your worst to get as frustrated as possible.