Friday, March 18, 2011

NCAA Tournament Thoughts: Early Friday

Texas is one of those teams that can go either way. They can lose in the first round or go to the Final Four. They have a lot of talent, but they're young and they're streaky. They looked pretty good against Oakland. An exciting game because Oakland is the rare underdog who wants to push the pace against a favored team.

Five teams got at-large bids with 14 losses, Tennessee, Penn State, Michigan State, Marquette and USC because of their high strength of schedule ratings. Four of those teams lost and I expect Marquette to make it all 5.

I wonder if the combined 27 losses between Tennessee and Michigan is the most ever for a first round game.

Marv Albert is doing the Texas-Oakland game, what a pleasure to listen to.

At least until Gus Johnson starts.

Whatever Bruce Pearl said to his team at halftime didn't work. Michigan outscored them 37-11 to start the second half, turn a 33-29 game into 70-40. And it will probably be his last halftime speech at Tennessee. The poor performance and the violations will lead to a likely firing.

Memphis - Arizona is a perfect matchup if the committee wanted to give us a fun fast-paced game. Got a little chippy for a minute with two intentional fouls for contact to the head.

Kyrie Irving made a brief appearance for Duke. That would be a huge lift for them if he is healthy.

Gus Johnson is starting to heat up. He just lost his shit over a finger roll. "GEORGE GERVIN WOULD BE PROUD!!!!!"

You just know the games Gus Johnson is calling are going to be close. Villanova had a 6 point lead and a chance to put it away, then George Mason hit a 3, Nova missed two free throws and fouled GMU for a 3-point play.

A great early performance from Gus Johnson.

Arizona-Memphis wow. The only thing worse than missing free throws is throwing away an inbounds pass. And an unbelievable shot block to end the game. You almost never see them miss a free throw on purpose, get the rebound and put it back up in time, but wow. And that was a good no-call. I find the officials have been making too many calls at the ends of these games, glad they let Arizona decide this one.

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