Happy Easter everyone.
I may be in a minority around here on this, but last night, I actually said "Poor Aggies" and didn't mean it derisively. They played a tough game, and if they had any offense to speak of, they'd have won that game pretty easily. No doubt the Ags' defense played a part, but UCLA looked kind of moribund. I'd say the Bruins need to pick it up, but their next game will be against the San Diego/Western Kentucky winner, and then the Xavier/West Virginia winner. Maybe one of the latter could give them a game, but it's hard to conceive of an easier path.
Anyway, congrats to A&M. I think Turgeon did a lot more with this team than should have been expected, especially in the last handful of games. The could have tanked down the stretch, but they sucked it up and ended up giving a #1 seed a very uncomfortable game.
Also, F off Dook. You're becoming just another team, you know that?
Here's the slate and my snap predictions. If you consult my previous post, you may come to the conclusion that they aren't worth the pixels they're printed with.
- No. 13 Siena at No. 12 Villanova (11:10 AM CST) - My heart says the Saints, my head says the Wildcats. But given the day's significance, how can you pick against the Saints? I think it'll be a good game.
- No. 7 Miami (FL) at No. 2 Texas (1:15 PM CST) - I think we should guard Jack McClinton. NO LEGACY MEDIA DINOSAUR COULD COME UP WITH SUCH INCISIVE ANALYSIS! TAKE THAT, KIRK BOHLS! Anyway, Horns should win, but I don't expect a blow-out. Something in around 5-10 points as we seal it by actually hitting our free throws. Our superb recent defense gives me comfort that we'll be able to clamp down on their shooters.
- No. 7 Butler at No. 2 Tennessee (1:30 PM CST) - Butler seems to be a team nicely designed to frustrate the Vols - they're disciplined, balanced, and have some non-stiffs up front. Vols haven't played really great since their Memphis win. I think we get an upset here.
- No. 13 San Diego at No. 12 Western Kentucky (1:40 PM CST) - I demand a finish to match their previous victories. Three OTs will be fine.
- No. 10 Davidson at No. 2 Georgetown (1:50 PM CST) - my second potential upset. After a strong first day, the Big East started getting exposed a bit. Given Davidson's excellent play against perenially disappointing Gonzaga, as well as its going toe-to-toe with Duke and UNC earlier in the year, I don't think they'll get spooked by the Hoyas' rep. But I still ultimately come down to Georgetown.
- No. 8 Mississippi State at No. 1 Memphis (3:45 PM CST) - My final upset possibility. Memphis was workmanlike in taking out UT-Arlington, while the Bulldogs looked sharp against Oregon. We haven't had a truly astonishing upset so far (maybe San Diego over UConn). Maybe this is where it happens. I certainly think Mississippi State's size and style can irritate the Tigers.
- No. 6 Oklahoma at No. 3 Louisville (4:00 PM CST) - Knowing what I know of the Sooners, and what I saw of the Cardinals, I think this will be a solid Louisville win. The Cards have enough big guys to neutralize wobbly Blake Griffin and inconsistent inconsistent Longar Longar, and I don't see David Godbold repeating his Friday night performance.
- No. 9 Arkansas at No. 1 North Carolina (4:20 PM CST) - UNC cruises to big lead, lets Locke and Sawyer to come in during the second half to hunt down the remaining wild boars.
Have fun watching the games! Feel free to discuss in comments...