Get inside March Madness with SI.com's Luke Winn in the Tourney Blog, a daily journal of college basketball commentary, on-site reporting and reader-driven discussions.
3/11/2007 12:20:00 PM
Join The Blog Pool ... Or Else
That's our pal Wladimir Klitschko, the boxer. He's here to strongly encourage you to join the Second Annual Tourney Blog Pool, which is open and accepting entries. Sign up, fill out your bracket, join the group "Luke Winn's Tourney Blog," and then sit back and let the magic happen.
Based on where I finished in last year's standings, there is a 20 percent chance that if you join this thing, you'll be able to come away from it saying something along the lines of, "My bracket was thoroughly superior to Luke Winn's and I don't even get paid to watch college basketball. He should be out of a job or at the very least, relinquish his blogging privileges."
If that's not incentive enough, there's also a prize package for the winner (a bunch of random stuff that has yet to be determined, but will probably include at least one video game, at least one basketball book, and at least one random piece of Sports Illustrated junk -- but not a football phone) and the immense fame associated with your name being mentioned in this space should you, at some point, be among the pool's leaders. The 2006 winner, Bradley White, still gets recognized on the street from his blog-pool-champ photo.
A few pool-related things of importance:
• We had 328 entries last season. If we don't hit at least exceed the number of teams in Division I (336), my self-esteem will take such a damaging hit that it could affect my blogging for the rest of the tournament. So please, ask your friends to join.
• It is IMPERATIVE that give your team a better name than the one the game assigns, which is "Team [Your Last Name]." I probably won't kick you out of the pool if you don't ... but really, you don't want to be the guy with Team Hirschfelder when everyone else has quality stuff like Todd Bozeman's Rejected Ham. I chose to make a reference to a hapless college hoops exhibition team from my childhood, and name my bracket Marathon Oil.
• If anyone out there wants to unofficially sponsor this pool -- let's say, your company makes retro jerseys of the 1933 Indianapolis Kautskys, and you want to give one away to the winner and get some pub here; or you're an upstart Internet university starting a major in bracketology and want to award our champ the first annual Lunardi/Palm Scholarship -- send me an e-mail from the link in the right-hand rail of the blog. All serious offers will be considered.
Team Malc here... and I'm gonna jump right into the fire, by stating that the first major upset will be Oral Roberts over #3 seed (east) Washington State. Other notable first round upsets: #12 Arkansas over #5 USC (East); #11 Stanford over #6 Louisville (south);#10 Creighton over #7 Nevada (South...not a huge upset, but by the way Nevada is getting hyped, it will be a surprise);#11 VCU over #6 Duke (West); and the closest thing to an upset out of the midwest in the first round will be #10 Georgia Tech over #7 UNLV. The biggest upset I'm seeing for the tourney is in the Midwest regional final, where I think Wisconsin will upset Florida to advance to the final four. I also see Texas upending UNC in the East regionals,before upsetting Georgetown in the regional final to advance to the final four. Kansas over UCLA in the West, and Ohio State over Texas A&M in the South.
Why do the eveny call the brackets by geographical regions? There is no correlation by teams or even where the games are played. Maybe someone ought to give the committee a map of the us. Or perhaps is run by all those former college BB players who never earned a degree!! Just call the brackets 1 -4, it would make more sense!!
Tha Truth here! I've won my work bracket 3 years running so far. Last year predicted WVU's run to the Sweet 16 and well as others. My first round upsets are Georgia Tech, Villanova, VCU, Gonzaga, George Washington, Texas Tech, Xavier, and Albany taking out Virginia. But its in the 2nd round where the real drama will happen. Butler over Maryland, Notre Dame over Oregon, and Marquette over UNC.. Yes i said it Marquette over UNC. 3rd Round So. Illinois over Kansas, Pitt over UCLA, Marquette over Texas, Tennessee over Ohio St., Texas A&M over Memphis. E8; Wisconsin over Florida, So. Illinois over Pitt, Georgetown, and Tex A&M. Final = Wisconsin vs. Georgetown. Winner Georgetown 72-65
In response to Josh's comment, it is very easy (and irrelevant) to point out a phenomenal player's physical deformity to try to detract from the fact that Tajuan has a 92% free throw shooting percentage, he also has the Pac-10 record for most three point shots made by a freshman beating Jason Capono's previous record! Making a joke out of Tajuan's ear is only revealing that Josh must have shortcomings of his own that he is trying to cover for!
Okay, this is a bit off-topic, as it has to do with the N.I.T. as opposed to the NCAA Tourney.... however, my pick to win it all: North Carolina State. My back-up pick is the Orangemen of Syracuse (still can't believe they missed the NCAA's).
First Round upsets...(12)Old Dominion over (5)Butler..(11)Winthrop over (6)Notre Dame..(10)Georgia Tech over (7)UNLV..(9)Villanova over (8)Kentucky..(11)VCU over (6)Duke..(10)Gonzaga over (7)Indiana..(9)Michigan State over (8)Marquette..(10)Texas Tech over (7)BC..(9)Xavier over (8)BYU..(13)Albany over (4)Virginia..(10)Creighton over (7)Nevada......Second Round...Other upsets big game to final four....(10)Georgia Tech over (2)Wisconsin...(3)Oregon over (1)Florida..(1)Kansas over (2)UCLA..(4)Texas over (1)UNC...(2)Georgetown over (4)Texas..(10)Creighton over (2)Memphis..(5)Tennessee over (1) Ohio St....(3)Texas A&M over (5)Tennessee...FINAL FOUR..(1)Kansas over (3)Oregon...(2)Georgetown over (3)Texas A&M...(1)Kansas over (2)Georgetown