First off topic. Who the fuck is in charge of this weather and can we fire them? The average high for my neck of the woods around St. Patties day is 51. It has been 30-35 degrees warmer than that. 85 on March 17th. No this not in anyway a good thing.
Now on to the tournament. Both Missouri and Kansas fans have descended upon my fair city because Omaha happens to be the site where both of their teams were sent. A move that surprised no one. And while I can't say I saw a lot of Kansas fans at the hotel I was sequestering myself in, the place was crawling with Missouri fans whom oh-by-the-way left early and very unhappy. I don't if this will go down as where were you when you heard about Kennedy moment but I can tell you where I was when Missouri went down. At a Perkins restaurant having dinner with the Contessa. A Kansas fan sitting near us looked up from his phone and yelled MISSOURI WENT DOWN! The place erupted. Poor unloved Missouri. Alas it seemed nobody loved them nor cared except of course for Duke. It had been 12 years since a 15 seed had upset a mighty 2 seed. It happened twice in 3 hours. It's hard to know which one was sweeter. It's arguable which was the bigger upset. I'll state my case in a minute.
The motel I was at didn't have true TV I saw nothing of the San Diego State loss. So I can't help Jonathan with what exactly went wrong. I can tell you North Carolina State is still around in the tournament so maybe they just got beat by the better team at least right now.
Creighton was who I thought they were. They barely beat the #5 team in the SEC and were the beneficiaries of some terrible coaching by Alabama and some shaky officiating. For the record as much I as I hate Creighton I liked that no call. None of it mattered they were never truly in the game against North Carolina at all as I expected they would not be.
Best Game: I'd have to say Norfolk State over Missouri. Down to the wire, competitive fast paced and fun to watch.
Worst Game. South Florida over Temple. Ok maybe there were some blowouts that were less competitive than this game but at least in those one team played well. In this stinker both clubs stunk the joint up.
Biggest Upset: Norfolk State over Missouri gets the nod over Lehigh over Duke. Why? Simply becuase in their second game Lehigh was highly competitive against Xavier why Florida just rolled Norfolk State like a cheap cigar. Lost in the discussion after they had beat Missouri was the fact that Norfolk State had lost this season to D2 Elizabeth City State. Lehigh had the look of a pretty good team that was under valued. Norfolk State was just flat a God awful team that happened to beat a team that many people, the Count included, had going to the final 4.
Officiating. The officiating in the Syracuse-UNC Asheville game was an embarrassment flat out. Would Asheville had won the game if they had gotten any of those calls right? I doubt it. But they weren't given a fair shot of doing so down the stretch that is a fact. a 16 has still never beaten a 1. and it seems the NCAA was working to keep it that way. I didn't like the call against Notre Dame either. I am no Notre Dame fan at all but I agree with Charles Barkley. That maybe be the rule by the book but you don't call it in those situations. I already said I liked the no call against Creighton...but fuck Creighton.
South: It looked for all the world like this was going to be the odd ball bracket With a 10, 11,12, and 15 winning their first round games but it ended up going pretty much according to Hoyle with one major exception. The 1,3 and 4 teams Indiana, Baylor, and Kentucky are still playing. The exception is Xavier the 10 seed who beat Notre Dame and then Lehigh whom of course beat Duke.
West: Michigan State, Louisville, Marquette, and Florida. Other than Florida the 7 seed this bracket has also gone as planned. The Missouri upset gave Florida an easy route to the sweet 16. I think any of these 4 could win this region.
East: Syracuse, Wisconsin, Cincinnati, and Ohio State. Another bracket that has but one oddball an it's not that odd. 1,2 and 4 are still around Cincy is a 6. I predict a team from Ohio will win the Ohio State-Cincy game.
Midwest: This bracket is a little funky. #1 North Carolina and #2 Kansas are still around but so are #11 North Carolina State and #13 Ohio. N.C. State is playing really well right now so Kansas has no cake walk but given that the only team left in this region that has comparable talent (North Carolina) is banged up and the next two games are in St. Louis (where the crowd will be pro Kansas) they are looking good for a run at the final 4.