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Commence the Madness! It's 12:00, brackets are locked, and games are tipping off. No matter how much I second (or third) guess my last minute pick changes, there's nothing to do now but wait and see how it pans out. I was having a really hard time with a couple sections of my bracket because the teams are so evenly matched. The Elite 8 will almost certainly be made up of Florida or Maryland and Wisconsin, Notre Dame, Oregon, or GT from the Midwest, Kansas and UCLA, Pitt, or Duke from the West, UNC or Texas and Georgetown from the East, and Ohio State and Texas A&M or Memphis from the South. What this means is that a few teams have much easier paths, notably Kansas (if they get past either Nova or Kentucky), Georgetown (who won't play anyone even close to their own level until they get to East Rutherford), and Ohio State (same deal as G'town). This makes it hard not to like the Hoyas, Jayhawks, or Buckeyes to make it to Atlanta with fresh players. Meanwhile, Team Lightswitch (who, to their credit, still manage to win when playing halfheartedly) could drop their second round game to Zona or Purdue or lose to a hot Maryland team. It's hard to see the Gators, not making the Final Four, but they have a few potential surprises in store. In the bottom half of the Midwest, Oregon/ND is a 3-point shootout that will obliterate GT if it manages to pull upsets on UNLV and Wisconsin. Injured and fading Badgers seem to be trying to bail out, but the question is to who. If Florida makes Elite 8, they'll face one of 4 teams coming off difficult games and should cruise. In the West, Duke (yes, Duke) could knock off Pitt or UCLA to draw Kansas where they'd ultimately get stomped. After watching Pitt fall apart when Aaron Gray is denied the ball, a Duke matchup is intriguing because McRoberts is the superior player and has more supporting players around him. An injured UCLA can still be serious trouble though too. But UCLA/Duke/Pitt all kill each other and no one can match up with Kansas by then. East, Texas/UNC is everyone's intriguing matchup to see how Hansbrough responds to a vastly superior inside presensce (answer: not well). If UNC doesn't flop against Marquette/Michigan State, they won't stand a chance against Texas who has a cakewalk until that point. Someone tell me they don't want to see Durant square off against Hibbert to get to Atlanta. After a challege with UNC, Texas is drained when they face the Hoyas who haven't even broken a sweat yet. In the South, Louisville may prove more tricky than expected but Texas A&M seems like too good a team to fold to the likes of Rick Pitino. Memphis looks good on paper, but they haven't played anyone, and Texas A&M will tear them apart. Ohio State/A&M is probably one of the tougher late-round picks because they're so evenly matched. I think the edge probably goes to Ohio State simply because they'll be fresher. Other interesting matchup: VT/Illinois. They're pratically the same team. Winner is a coin-toss, but will probably make the Sweet 16.

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  • I'm Rev. Adam
  • From Oakton, Virginia, United States
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