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Tag:2011 NCAA basketball tournament
Posted on: March 21, 2011 12:11 am
 

March Madness - first weekend recap

Every year March Madness is filled with wild games, close finishes, and crazy upsets.  Here's how the first weekend of the tourney of 2011 went down:
  • In the first round the 1's, 2's, and 3's had absolutely no trouble (except maybe BYU, the only team to win by a single digit, 8)
  • Other than the 1,2,3's 16 of the remaining 20 were decided by less than 10
  • 11 of those remaining 20 were decided by 5 pts or less, a combined 30 points, or an average of 2.7 points
  • The Southwest regional saw the 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 seeds all win
  • Tennessee lost by 30 to #8 Michigan after being down only 4 at half.  Bruce "Cheater" Pearl's leading scorer had 19, none of them in the 2nd half
  • I didn't even know there was a station called TruTV, and I got it in HD!  Southern Fried Stings looks pretty good too...

  • Saturday and Sunday blowouts included #12 Richmond by 17, #11 VCU over #3 Purdue by 18, BYU over Gonzaga by 22, and OSU by 32 (only one making any sense)
  • The big dogs started struggling: Notre Dame lost by 14 to #10 Florida State, Pitt lost by a point in a game they shoulda won, Duke survived by only 2, UNC won by only 3, and San Diego State needed 2 overtimes
  • #1 Pitt's loss was to last year's national runner up Butler, who lost it's best player and struggled despite returning the rest of last year's squad, taking an at-large 8 seed into the tournament
  • The three 4vs5 matchups were all VERY close (8, 5, and 1 point games)
  • 6 more games were decided by 5 points or less (including #11 Marquette's upset of #3 Syracuse)
  • The so-called "amazing" Big East has only 2 teams left, lowest seed Marquette and Kemba Walker UConn (see my last article; I also loved all 11 teams)
Soapbox: It seems to me that this year had the usual number of upsets but far more really close games and fewer blowouts.  It also seems to me that there were a lot of dumb plays and dumb decisions by seemingly dumb players (ex's: the Pitt-Butler and UNC-Washington foul-filled finishes).  Is that because NCAA basketball has far fewer upperclassmen and just a bunch of raw talented freshmen and sophomores who bolt for the NBA after only a year or two?  I think yes, and I hope this year's Final 4 are all senior-led teams just to prove the points that A) experience matters and B) graduating from college matters.
  • Oh and one more bullet: my bracket sucks.  I knew I should have gone with my heart and picked homers Wisconsin and Marquette to play in the national championship!
 
 
 
 
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