Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Monday Musings...on a Tuesday

Ok so I'm a day late with this one. You know what? It happens. Sometimes it just does. You want to post on a Monday because, you know, Monday Musings sounds better than Tuesday...hell I don't even know what I'd call a rambling post on a Tuesday. Well actually I do- I'd call it Monday Musings on a Tuesday. Done and done. Glad we cleared that up.

Anywho, first a hearty congrats to the Gopher basketball squad. Gutty, gritty, determined performance in the Big Ten tournament- well except for the Sunday stinker against Ohio State. Apparently they knew they were in so they wanted to rest up for the Big Dance? That Evan Turner is pretty good though- and by pretty good I mean I would seriously consider taking him ahead of John Wall in the NBA draft. That is, if I had the opportunity and if I still cared about the NBA, which since the Sonics got shipped to Oklahoma, I do not. But still, Turner is the real deal and if Ohio State hadn't been placed in the bracket of death I'd love them as a Final Four team.

Honestly, I know next to nothing about college hoops this year as I've watch next to nothing for college hoops this year. Probably for the best for my bracket, considering in the years when I think I DO know something I end up doing terrible. Or at least not winning- and let's be honest, if you don't win it's terrible. Just ask Tim Brewster. What? Sorry, couldn't resist.

A few things to consider when filling out your brackets, courtesy of Colin Cowherd (who, by the way, you can now hear daily on AM 1500 in the Twin Cities. He talks about all kinds of sports instead of the host in the 9-noon slot on another so-called "sports" station that talks Vikings, Vikings, and more Vikings. And occassionally the Timberwolves because they're so relevant right now. Cowherd's not my favorite, but for me he's much better than the alternative):

* it's been 24 years since a team lower than a four seed has won the national championship.

* it's been about that long since anyone lower than a six seed has made the national final.

* 12 seeds and lower do not get past the first weekend- at least not usually. Since they started this whole crazy field of 64 back in the 80's, something like six in 400 hundred 12 seeds have gotten to the sweet 16. Not saying it can't happen, just saying it's very unusual. There's always a 12 upsetting a 5, but that's usually where it ends.

Having said all of that, and again remembering I have watched little college hoops and know absolutely nothing this year other than Evan Turner is a cross between Jesus (either the ice skating Jesus who does interpretive dance of my life or the baby Jesus who is watching his Baby Einstein videos learning about shapes and colors or the one who wears a tuxedo t-shirt. Or maybe the Baby Jesus who wears #7 for the Twins and who really should have signed that bloody extension right now? Or sweet baby Jesus), and some kind of really good basketball player who just seems to always make the right play (well except for his 10 turnovers Sunday) and is really, really "clutch" despite the fact stat nerds will tell you that clutch doesn't exist.

What was I saying again? Were we talking about bacon? No, but we should have been. From someone who knows nothing the brackets looked awfully messed up. Kansas is the supposed #1 seed in the tournament and they get the toughest bracket? Kentucky is the supposed 2nd best team and they also get a tough bracket? The ****ing Dukies are supposedly the third best team- even though they did not deserve a #1 seed and only got on because they're ****ing Duke and therefore stole it from both Ohio State and West Virginia WHO ONLY WON THEIR FREAKING CONFERENCE TOURNAMENTS!?!?!?!?- and they get the easiest bracket in the history of mankind? I...I know nothing, and yet still I feel like I know more than the commitee of monkeys who put this together. They apparently just threw feces at a white board and then wrote the names of teams with their fingers. Oh what's that? They were a room full of men who should know something about this? Are you sure? Was Gary Bettman the committee chair? I'm going with a room full of monkeys until given definitive proof otherwise.

Ridiculous brackets. Ridiculous. Gonzaga an 8 seed? Temple only a five? Villanova a two? So much wrong with it I don't even have the time.

Oh and two more things before I forget- we barely had 65 worthy teams for the tournament this year. Barely. Maybe Mississippi State got snubbed, but Viriginia Tech played a non-conference schedule that made even Glen Mason say "geez, challenge yourselves, will you?" and I'm not even sure Wake Forest belonged and Illinois wasn't great either. Yet we're going to increase the bids to 96 so coaches can keep their jobs and schools can make more money? Yet another example of why sports needs an independent board to make decisions on this stuff, because when those involved make decisions only for profit and not for the good of the game or without giving a spit about the fans, well, they need a little more common sense thrown into their decision making. Or any.

The second thing: Bill Simmons has had a lot of good ideas over the year. His best might be that any women's college basketball score, or brackets, that scroll on the bottom line of E!SPN or CBS or ABC or wherever should be done in pink. Countless times I've seen a score or bracket and thought "wait I didn't know those teams were- OH FRICK it's the women's bracket." And then been mad about it. Honestly, to the people who run networks- it's not sexist to put that in pink. We know fans of Tennessee, UConn, and the families of women's college hoops players really care about those results. But for the rest of us, do us the public service so we're not always confused.


Ok so what else? Oregon coach Chip Kelly is having some issues with the inmates of the Oregon correctional facility- I MEAN his Oregon Ducks football team. Starting tailback LaMichael James is suspended for being arrested for domestic abuse. Starting quarterback Jeremiah Masoli was suspended for the season for his alleged involvement in a dorm theft. As much as this looks bad for the Ducks and Kelly, I have to praise him for his discipline and reaction to this. No really- as Andy Staples says so well in his satirical piece, Kelly could have taken the Bobby Bowden approach and given both of his stars, especially Masoli, a slap on the wrist as punishment and saved his conference and national title hopes in 2010. Instead, Kelly came down hard on both players, as he did last year on tailback LaGarret Blount for his punch in the opener against Boise State. If he keeps having players arrested, Kelly is going to get himself in hot water and perhaps a ticket out of Eugene, but for now, his stern punishments (at least by college football standards) will help keep him as Ducks coach. Well that and the Pac 10 title he won last year.


Gopher spring practice starts March 23rd- just seven sleeps away!

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