Archive for Big East

Tourney Pick’em and Analysis to Come…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2009 by sportsguru09

To all my readers out there, I will be doing a region by region analysis of the 2009 NCAA Tournament bracket through Thursday of this week. Check back each day to see what chances I give YOUR team.

If you want to join a NCAA Tournament Pick’Em Challenge, join mine
-Click on NCAA Tourney Pick’Em
-Click on Join Private Group
-Group ID# is 90706
-Password is “baseball”

Name your pick set and good luck!


All hail the ‘cuse…Duke gives me a heart attack….

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , on March 14, 2009 by sportsguru09

One more Overtime, one more victory for the Syracuse Orange. Last night in the Garden, Syracuse took it to West Virginia and proved once again that they are primed for the NCAA tournament and ready to make a run to the Final Four. Jonny Flynn and company continued to knock down shots, get steals, and make free throws with absolutely no legs or any stamina left from the 6 Overtime marathon the night (and morning) before. Let’s give them credit where credit is due. syracuselogoA forgotten squad in the Big East during the regular season, Syracuse, whether or not they win the Big East tournament today against Pitino’s Louisville Cardinals, has stepped up to the plate and taken over the spotlight from the Huskies and Pittsburgh. We were tired of hearing about UConn and Pitt anyways, thanks Syracuse. And, if they beat the Cardinals today, do they deserve a #2 or #3 seed in the Big Dance? I think so. With a Big East Tournament title, they would officially be the hottest team in the country. Hopefully they’ll have something left for the NCAA tourney (refer to my brutal conference post) and continue to play well. Good for Jim Boeheim…

And now, the thing that makes March Madness great but gives me a heart attack when Duke is involved. Duke snuck by BC last night after being down 7 at halftime. However, down the stretch with a 7 and 5 point lead, Duke missed free throw after free throw and let the Eagles creep back in the game, leaving them with the final shot and a chance to win. dukebluedevilsThank goodness BC had one of their Power Forwards throw up a 30 foot 3-pointer with over 3 seconds still left on the clock. And what was I doing? Sitting on the coach, heart pumping, and sweating profusely….like usual when Duke plays a nail-biter. I don’t think I can take much more of this…it’s just not healthy. And to all those “Fear the Turtle” Maryland fans today: watch out for Gerald Henderson…he has some more to prove after last night. Good luck to ya…..

PS – North Carolina got lucky last night by the way. They were definitely outplayed by Virginia Tech and the gobblin’ Hokies. And no, don’t give me the excuse of well, it was because Ty Lawson was out. Boo hoo hoo, no one wants to hear it….especially me and the rest of the Cameron Crazies.

Absolute bedlam in the NCAA…

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 14, 2009 by sportsguru09

6 Overtimes, 3 ½ hours?!?!?!?! Upsets galore, OT thrillers, and buzzer beaters: just another glimpse into how great the 2009 NCAA tournament will be. Yesterday’s college hoops action included two top seeds in the Big East going down, Oklahoma (#1 seed) losing a close one, and Kansas (also a #1 seed) biting the bullet and falling short against a stubborn Baylor team. And the top seeds in the ACC have yet to even play! PS, no one cares about the Pac 10 anyways, they’re non-competitive. Though I don’t support the necessity of having individual conference tournaments to place a potential other “Big Dancer” in the March Madness mix, because of the fact that they still do exist, let’s go ahead and root for the dramaticbasketball. Boy did our wishes come true last night. What will go down in NCAA history as one of the greatest heavyweight fights ever, Syracuse and UConn took exhaustion to a new level. Jonny Flynn, Syracuse’s star guard, played 67 out of 70 minutes. That’s the definition of stamina and perseverance. The game even saw bench scrubs getting minutes late and racking up statistics for the first all season. Over 200 shots were taken, 60+ fouls were committed, and just to add spice to the night, multiple layups that could’ve won the game were missed. Madison Square Garden turned into Hollywood last night….what a show.

March Madness is here folks. I can’t believe we still have to wait until Sunday night to get the bracket posted and pick our winners. O well….but in the meantime, let’s talk about what makes the NCAA tourney better than all the rest in professional or college sports. Yes, the Super Bowl, World Series, and Daytona 500 are exciting, but do they really compete in a sports lover’s heart with the intrigue and excitement created by March Madness? It’s not even close. If I had to give up watching any Finals series or championship games except for just one, I would without hesitation choose to watch the NCAA tourney for the rest of my life. The drama, the despair, the elation……all in one tournament! The best part is: no matter what the year, there’s always buzzer beaters and NOTHING can top those. Remnants of Bryce Drew, Jim Valvano, and Christian Laettner fill the halls of NCAA tourney history. ncaa-logoNot even great catches or comebacks in the Super Bowl are better than half-court swishes, a full length drive down the court for a game winning layup, or bad free throw shooters actually hitting free throws with little or no time left to lead their team to victory. These moments are priceless and best of all, they are created by kids who’ve worked their tail off (on the court and in the classroom) and have a REAL PRIDE AND PASSION for the game of basketball. This isn’t the NBA where every player is typically overpaid, hot dogs-it, and bores the audience to sleep. Truthfully, the heck with the NBA. March Madness is a time where athletes’ hearts are poured out, teams become families, and future all-stars make a name for themselves in the most dramatic of moments. All for the love of the game….aren’t we missing that these days? The NCAA Tournament is two thumbs up in my book. The NCAA Tournament is finally upon us folks…are you ready?!?

PS – Good luck filling out your brackets next week. You have as about as much chance of picking all the games perfectly as I do actually winning the trip to ESPN studios by eating Cheez-Its and looking inside the box…..

Memphis Tigers…Overrated and Untested

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 12, 2009 by sportsguru09

Another year, another Conference USA title for John Calipari and the Memphis Tigers. Who cares? I sure don’t. They play in the Conference USA with little to no competition. Yes, they made a big run in last year’s NCAA Tourney, but this year they’ll have a rude awakening when they face an opponent with some REAL talent.

Bracketologists (man would I love to be one of those and make a living) around the NCAA are throwing around the idea that Memphis could potentially get a #1 seed in one of the regions in the Big Dance. THIS IS ABSOLUTELY OBSURD. memphistigers2No way do they deserve a #1 seed over the likes of Pitt, UConn, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Duke, and Louisville. Many people forget that Louisville, not UConn or Pitt, actually won the Big East regular season title. It would be a shame and a mistake on the NCAA’s part to give Memphis a #1 seed. They are unproven against other big-time basketball programs while the other aforementioned list of teams have beaten themselves up in and out of conference play all year long. Memphis’ 2009 strength of schedule was 55, worse than most powerhouses around the NCAA. I mean, look at their 2008-2009 scheduled opponents? The team list includes: Chattanooga, Fairfield, UTEP, Tulsa, Houston, Tulane, Marshall, Lamar, Syracuse, and Xavier, among others. Yes, Syracuse and Xavier are reputable opponents, but Memphis’ conference foes are a list of misfit teams with no real strength or ability to even compete with the Tigers.

And another thing, more talk about John Calipari as the Conference USA Coach of the Year and potential NCAA Coach of the Year? Are you serious? The NCAA shouldn’t reward this guy, he should be told that he better be glad he won the weak conference that he’s in. Otherwise, he’d be looking for a new job. calipari2If he really wants to prove himself and show his players off, how ‘bout throwing Memphis into the Big East or ACC next year. I 100% GUARANTEE that they would not win either of those conference regular season championships outright. Memphis just isn’t that good for one, and the physical toll from each of those power conferences would prove them decent at best, maybe even mediocre. With a cake schedule and a babyface of a conference, Memphis is usually fresh going into March Madness. But in 2009, I predict that their tourney life won’t last too long…..

Does it pay to be in a brutal conference?

Posted in College Basketball with tags , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2009 by sportsguru09

Many people say that towards the end of every college basketball season, teams who already know that they are going to the Big Dance get great pre-NCAA tourney warm-ups by fighting amongst themselves for their respective conference tournament titles. Teams play each other once again, get banged up, run themselves ragged, then allegedly waltz into the tournament, get bumped to the NIT (the JV to the Varsity’s NCAA Tournament), or get their plane tickets home to watch the rest of the season from the couch……wait a second…..waltz into the NCAA tournament? You must be joking. 300_66316 Has anyone ever heard of the Big East and the ACC? Do people know they exist? These are arguably…wait, they ARE the toughest, let alone most competitive two conferences in all of college basketball. Each conference goes at least six or seven teams deep in the number of teams who could possibly get an at-large big to the Big Dance. I mean, just take 2008-2009 for example. In the ACC, Florida State, Maryland, UVA, and NC State have all won games against Duke, North Carolina, or Wake Forest. Yet, their records indicate that they should lose by 40 points. At home or on the road, any team can honestly beat any team at one time. Look at the Big East. Louisville loses to UConn, then beats Georgetown by 30 points. Same situation for all of those teams. Each conference has teams like Providence, Clemson, Florida State, Syracuse, and Notre Dame that all are talented teams but play in an absolutely grueling conference against the nation’s elite. If they played in any other conference, including the Pac-10 which is a non-competitive joke, they would win the regular season outright. Now, you might say that if they were elite, then they would win these games against other dominant college programs. This may be true, but what about when it comes to their conference tournaments? A team like UConn, North Carolina, Duke, or Pittsburgh who is already going dancin’ must now win 3,4, or 5 more games to claim a tournament championship…..before the ONLY MEANINGFUL tournament starts! They get taken to the wire by teams with false hope of dancin, players get hurt, teams are exhausted, and for what? To say that you’re an elite team? WHO CARES, YOU’VE ALREADY PROVEN IT! That’s what the NCAA tournament is there for: to take those elite teams and determine which one is the best. march-madness-on-demandWhat do you get in the meantime if you don’t win your conference tournament? A few brutal, hard-nosed games against teams playing for nothing or for little hope, teams with nothing to lose, and an even tougher journey going into the NCAA tournament with trying to have a team 100% healthy, composed, and ready to run at full strength. To me, the NCAA has missed out on this subject. Based on how the regular season goes, give the regular season champs an automatic bid, then go through the same process to pick the remaining tournament teams based on record. Why does it make sense for a mid-major with a losing regular season record to win their conference tournament, get a big in the Big Dance, then lose in the opening round by 30 or 40 points? It does no good for the game, and those teams usually just get embarrassed. And for all those mid-majors out there, a team like Georgia in 2008, going 4-12 in conference play, conference tourneys can steal a bid for your conference. Why even have a conference tourney? To give false hope and to skew the NCAA tourney performance of the nation’s elite? It just doesn’t benefit anyone….except for a lonely mid-major or bogus major conference squad that gets less than a Cinderella’s chance of actually making a name for themselves in the NCAA tournament. Keep dreamin NCAA….what a waste of time