Archive for the College Basketball Category

2010 March Madness Sleepers….

Posted in College Basketball, Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 16, 2010 by sportsguru09

Another year, another March, another month of Madness. That’s right folks, it’s a new year and a new bracket of teams with no hope, some hope, or a good chance of cutting down the nets in Indianapolis. March Madness 2010As everyone scrambles to start filling out fifteen different scenario-pending brackets, we all bask in the glory and anticipation of a tournament filled with buzzer beaters, upsets, and the potential for a #1 seed to finally bite the bullet and get canned in the first weekend (except my Blue Devils). Trust me, if Duke gets canned, you won’t hear much more from me in the latter half of March. The Thursday deadline is approaching fast so let’s kick the Madness off with a few upset specials I’ve got up my sleeve….

1. Temple vs. Cornell in the Round of 64

Yes, I know everyone likes Temple and their guard play this year. But you know what? Cornell is one of the best 3-point shooting teams in the country. They fire up threes like the ball is on fire. With any space, a 3-ball is headed toward the rim from the Big Red. Cornell is one of the leaders in the clubhouse in 3-point percentage and attempts in the NCAA Division 1, and there’s no reason to be gun-shy here in the tournament. I mean, for goodness sakes, Andy Bernard (the Office) went there, so they must be good. With that Ivy League brain power, they might very well just have the fortitude and the swagger to knock off Temple. As we all know, the 5-12 matchup is always an intriguing one. Every year, at least one 12 seed does its thing and takes care of business against an often too-comfortable 5 seed. Look for this year to be no different.

2. Notre Dame vs. Villanova in the Sweet 16

Let’s skip a few rounds and head on to the Sweet 16 where I really like Notre Dame to upset a very overrated Villanova Wildcat team. With Harangody back and Little-Hansborough playing well from the perimeter, Notre Dame has taken on an identity that was present with the ballclub last year. I know the ‘Cats still have Scottie Too Hottie and an array of guards, but there is not one soul on the Villanova that can truly contain Cool Hand Luke in the paint. If the Fighting Irish make it this far and Villanova doesn’t lay an egg against Richmond in Round 2, look for the Green and Gold to fight on and lose to Duke in the Elite 8.

3. Florida vs. The West Region

All I have heard this week is “Oh, my Hokies didn’t make it, what is the committee thinking?” or “My Hokies or My Bulldogs deserve a spot in the NCAA Tournament.” Well, to be quite honest, they might as well go ahead and worry about the NIT because neither Miss. State, nor VA Tech had a chance of cutting down the nets anyways. Who got in instead? My super sleeper team, the Florida Gators. Watch out folks, watch out for the Gators to come chompin’ on your doorstep. Billy Donovan is a prove winner and his team ALWAYS plays well during tourney time. Now that they’ve been given a chance by the NCAA committee, count on them to prove their worth in the West Region. Not only do I have them upsetting BYU in Round 1, but I have them taking down Kansas State to secure a spot in the Elite 8, where they will eventually succumb to their Orange counterpart, Syracuse and Jim Beoheim. Florida is deep with young talent, they endured a learning season in the brutal SEC, and have a young star by the name of Chandler Parsons who can light it up from 3-point land or dribble to the basket among the trees. No one has heard a lot about Florida this year, but any team coached by Donovan makes me a believer. Everyone is on the K State bandwagon, but watch them unravel under the pressure when they face the Gators early into March Madness. I like Florida and their potential here, and why not? No one’s ever able to “call” the next George Mason run in the tourney….da Gators have the best chance of anyone. Count it, and the foul.

My Worst Nightmare…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , on May 13, 2009 by sportsguru09

The title speaks for itself…gross…

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Alpha Inventions

Why Sports Illustrated, Why?!?…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2009 by sportsguru09

Ugh, I am disgusted. What did I get in the mail today? Sports Illustrated’s NCAA Championship issue with Tyler Hansbrough on the front. I could not have been more upset. Sports Illustrated should’ve known better. I don’t want this! You know what I did? siunccoverYep, you got it. Ripped that cover right off (the rest of the magazine was good, come on now). I should get a one magazine refund for even having to look at that right out of the mailbox. Even worse, the Tar Heel I hate the most, Tyler Hansbrough, highlighted the front cover with a ridiculous, goofy looking face while taking a shot against one of State’s defenders in the NCAA title game last Monday night. Gross…SI, take it back. I would’ve rather had a “Duke Gets Knocked Out” issue to be perfectly honest. At least I wouldn’t have had to look at Hansbrough and the rest of his lady friend Tar Heels. Come on SI, you know better…

Courtney, So Much For That Guarantee…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2009 by sportsguru09

Can anyone say student loan? How about $64,000 of debt? Well, all this is now a reality for Ms. Courtney Paris, the Oklahoma Lady Sooner who failed on her guaranteed NCAA Championship as of 9 P.M. last night. The Lady Sooners lost to the Louisville Lady Cardinals in the Final Four Sunday evening by a bucket after blowing over a 10 point lead at the end of the 1st half, thus ending OU’s title hopes and crushing Paris’ guarantee. When asked the $64,000 question (literally), she said, however, that she would be good on it and would pay back the scholarship in the coming years. Paris just didn’t have the cash on her last night, of course.

What does this teach us kids? NEVER GUARANTEE ANYTHING when money’s on the line. You’re just asking to be broke. It’s all fun and games until someone goes bankrupt. This isn’t the board game Life, it IS life. Money doesn’t grow on trees…unless it’s Monopoly money.monopoly_photoshop_template

And to those in the financial offices at OU, nothing like getting $64,000 back in the mail right?

Silly Sooner…Guarantees Are For Kids…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2009 by sportsguru09

So, let me get this straight. Before March Madness began, at Senior Night, one of the Oklahoma Lady Sooners, Courtney Paris, guaranteed an NCAA Championship?!?!? And if they didn’t win it she would pay back her entire OU scholarship, a value of $64,000?!?!? I am ABSOLUTELY STUNNED, mortified for her parents, and completely hysterical over how obnoxious this whole thing is. I know the Lady Sooners are a quality basketball team and are in the Final Four, but has Ms. Paris ever heard of the UConn Lady Huskies and Geno? They haven’t lost in what feels like a decade and they have averaged over a 20+ point margin of victory in each of their NCAA games during the Big Dance this year. oulogoAnd oh by the way, earlier this year the Huskies dismantled the Sooners by 28 points. I’m no fortune teller, but a 28 point margin is a LOT to overcome over the course of one game. Anything can happen, mistakes can be made, and flukes do indeed happen, but let’s be real here. If this were PTI and we were playing “OddsMakers,” I would give the Lady Sooners a 7% shot at winning the game. However, this may take at least 80 points from Paris in order to keep up with the Lady Huskies on the court.

Now don’t get me wrong, I admire the courage and the heroism of the guarantee. Many famous athletes, including Joe Namath for one, have done so in the past and lived up to their public, cocky statements. If the Sooners were able to actually win the game, however, the guarantee would go down as absolutely unbelievable in the history of women’s college basketball. But don’t forget, SHE’S RISKING A $64,000 SCHOLARSHIP. I don’t know Paris and her family’s financial situation but as a parent (and no I wouldn’t know), this just doesn’t seem right. Paris, yes, earned the scholarship herself but if it then disappears, guess who pays the college bills? Good ‘ole mommy and daddy (or Paris takes out a $64,000 high interest loan). Come on Courtney, don’t be silly.

And on the subject of women’s basketball, does anyone know if the WNBA even exists anymore?!

To Be A Wildcat or Not To Be…That Is The Question…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 31, 2009 by sportsguru09

Behind Door #1: 8 Years, $35M at College Basketball’s Mecca

Behind Door #2: Another year, no love and another overrated team in a pathetic conference

Mr. John Calipari, which do you choose?

The answer is simple… GO TO KENTUCKY. What better way to prove yourself? Move to Lexington, become a jockey for their thoroughbred basketball players, and restore the tradition and prowless that Kentucky hasn’t seen since the Pitino era. To boot, you get $35M to do so. Sounds like a winner to me, but hey, I’ve been wrong before.

Calipari has taken an above average Memphis Tiger team to the NCAA Tournament multiple times in his career there starting in 2000. Just last year his team was in the Championship Game, only to blow a late lead and lose to Kansas in Overtime. This year, Missouri exposed them for what they really were in the Sweet 16…overrated and untested…and knocked them out early, much earlier than so-called bracketologists predicted. 100111All in all, however, that’s neither here nor there in this debate. Now, let’s shine light on Calipari’s current predicament: coach Kentucky or continue at Memphis? We’ll strictly stay with pros and cons, don’t worry folks.

PROS:

1 – $$$$$$$$$$$$…Can anyone else spell cash?!?! John Calipari has been offered an 8-year, $35M deal to move to Kentucky and coach the Wildcats
2 – Getting to coach at one of, if not the most, prestine and richest basketball schools in the country and of all time
3 – Calipari will be a motivational blessing with a great reputation among Wildcat fans with what he’s done at Memphis over the last 9 years
4 – You get to follow Billy Gillespie who clearly had no idea what he was doing with a young, talented 2009 Wildcat group
5 – His coaching legacy will now live in the same place as Rick Pitino and Adolf Rupp…that’s pretty good company if we’re talking college basketball
6 – Calipari can leave behind the criticism and the “under-appreciation” he got while coaching Memphis who plays in an overall weak and shallow conference. He will be able to truly prove himself in a high calibar conference with lots of talent and physical play and a high level of competition
7 – I heard the Kentucky Derby’s pretty sweet to attend in person…
8 – Mr. Memphis will be able to develop a young, talented set of ballplayers, including Jody Meeks, who could make a run at Player of the Year during the 2009-2010 season
9 – $$$$$$$$…Did anyone mention money?!?!ncb_ap_calipari_200

CONS:

1 – Calipari will be taking over a set of players who are unproven and will have to live up to Wildcat standards (i.e. Pitino and Rupp) of performance over the course of their and his career
2 – By leaving the Tigers, Memphis will likely lose recruits and Calipari’s abandonment will likely leave a bitter taste in the Tigers’ mouth. They will have to start all over. But who knows, this may not even be a concern of his.
3 – Calipari will no longer be able to cakewalk through a pushover conference and literally guarantee himself recruits and a conference title each basketball season going forward. With Memphis, regular season and tournament championships were literally locked up before the year even started and a high seed in the Big Dance usually followed suit.
4 – He won’t be getting paid as much unless he regotiates his contract…which could get ugly…it usually does…
5 – He’s already married so he won’t be able to “shmooze” with any of the ladies in Lexington…we all know they’re reputation…heard of Ashley Judd?

Clearly, the odds favor the pro here. It looks pretty clear-cut as to what Calipari should do. But to sum it all up, we’ll just use the wise words of Jerry Maguire to pave the way for Mr. Calipari and his decision…SHOOOOOOW ME THE MONEY

Tom Izzo…The Magician…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 30, 2009 by sportsguru09

He’s done it again. Tom Izzo has pulled yet another rabbit out of his hat. Instead, this time it was a 2009 Michigan State Spartan.

Courtesy of psufanblog.com

Courtesy of psufanblog.com

Izzo and his “under the radar” Spartans have stepped back onto the NCAA stage and stolen the spotlight heading into the Final Four…in Detroit, Michigan. Home Sweet Home State? I think so. Izzo has taken a bunch of unknowns outside of Michigan and turned them magically into another overachieving unit that has simply played flawlessly throughout March Madness and the NCAA Tournament. Whatever tricks that Izzo has had up his sleeve have proved brilliant in the team’s journey through the NCAA field. This says a lot about Izzo and his leadership. Though I cannot stand the Big 10, you must give credit where credit is due. Outside of the Michigan State campus, if you asked someone, including me, to name one member of their current roster they and I would’ve laughed and said “Who cares? They’re not going to do anything anyways.” And there you go folks, I was wrong. I’ll admit it. Shoot, they’ve proved us all wrong, even so-called bracketologists. NO ONE, and I mean no one, had them in the Final Four of their pick’em bracket, let alone winning the dance and cutting down the nets. Why would you have? They play in the Big 10! That’s strike 1. But Izzo and company have simply stunned the College Basketball world and booked their trip to Detroit where they are likely to sell the place out with Spartan fans so close to home. It’s going to be ruckus and absolute pandemonium when State steps onto the court…

izzo_mainDo I think Michigan State has a chance against UConn and likely UNC this weekend? Well, Izzo’s already proved me wrong once getting his guys to play outside their minds. Why not two more games, huh? I think he’d tell you they’re pretty good…but that’s just a hunch. Don’t count them out…It could be another night at Izzo’s Magic Theater. We’ll just have to wait and see, but for now, buy your tickets folks and get out your wands. You’re in for a treat. Nobody knows how he does it, but he’s got the right touch..the magic touch if you will.