Breaking down media mock; more notes (cont.)
Overseeded: UNLV (6), Richmond (7), Florida State (9). The Rebels should be seeded much lower now that they have lost two straight games. I also had Florida State as my last team in headed into last weekend.
Underseeded: Old Dominion (11). I don't feel that strongly about this one, but I had to choose somebody.
Home cookin': Whoever makes it out of New Orleans better hope Missouri loses in the first or second round. I know I wouldn't want to play the Tigers in St. Louis. Also, check out the four teams that were sent to San Jose: Pitt, Charlotte, Vanderbilt, College of Charleston. They're all from the east, which should tell you how few good teams play west of the Mississippi.
Upset special: Old Dominion over UNLV in the first round.
Regional final: Kansas over Wisconsin.
Overseeded: Butler (6), Rhode Island (7), Illinois (8).
Underseeded: Maryland (10), Florida (12).
Home cookin': Vermont might have a nice little edge in Providence, except it has to play Kansas in the first round. (Plus, Jayhawks fans travel as well as anyone.) The winner of the New Mexico-Utah State game would also presumably draw better fan support in Spokane than the winner of Wake Forest-Florida.
Upset special: Florida over Wake Forest in the first round. A classic 12-5 upset.
Regional final: Purdue over Villanova.
Kansas beats Purdue. Syracuse beats Kentucky.
In a fitting way to end a rematch of the 2003 final, Kansas' Tyshawn Taylor blocks Syracuse guard Andy Rautins' three-point attempt at the buzzer to give the Jayhawks their second championship in three years.
Man, I can't wait to do this for real in four weeks.
Other Hoop Thoughts
It was a brilliant move by Bruce Pearl to play so much zone against Kentucky, even though that's not his team's standard operating procedure. Why any coach would play a single possession of man-to-man against Kentucky is beyond me.
In fact, I have to wonder why, given the success Jim Boeheim has had going zone fulltime the last several years, more coaches don't do just that. I think it comes down to the macho belief that if you play zone, you're conceding that your guys are not as good as the other coach's guys. Uh, maybe they're not, coach.
Prediction: Kentucky will lose at least one game in the next 12 days. The 'Cats are going to play five games during that span, four of which come on the road against Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and Georgia.
One last thought from the Kentucky-Tennessee game: Anyone else notice that Tennessee's undershirts were illegal? They're supposed to be a solid color and the same as the game jerseys, but UT's undershirts had white stitching on them. You won't be seeing those in the NCAA tournament.
How does an Arizona team fighting for its tournament life lose at home to Oregon State?
It's time to start talking about Sherron Collins as a national player of the year candidate. He is only by far the most important player on the nation's best team.
Too many people are arguing that Rick Barnes should shorten his rotation, as if that is a cure-all to Texas' problems. Jay Wright plays 11 guys at Villanova and it seems to be working out well. If you have a lot of good players, the best thing you can do is play 'em.
One of the best rules changes of the last 10 years was the decision to count technical fouls toward a player's personal fouls.
Keep your eye on Lewis Jackson's minutes at Purdue. The sophomore point guard played 20 minutes (6 points, 5 assists, 0 turnovers) in the Boilermakers' win over Iowa. That's the most he has played in five games since returning from a broken foot suffered this preseason.
How about Brian Zoubek pulling down 17 rebounds for Duke in just 22 minutes during the Blue Devils' rout of Maryland. Zoubek may be limited physically, but he serves a very useful purpose for this team.
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