NCAA Tournament History Being Made

Written March 27th, 2011 by Eric

Holy crap.

For those who have given up on basketball for the rest of the season (not that I can blame you) here’s your update on the tournament.

For the first time since the tournament increased to 64 teams, all 4 number 1 seeds failed to make the Final Four.  While we’re still waiting on the result of Kentucky and North Carolina, Virginia Commonwealth just took out the last #1 seed 71-61 for their first ever trip to the final four.  This is only the third time in history that an 11 seed has made the final four, with George Mason in 2006 and LSU in 1986 being the first two.

Congrats to Shaka Smart for succeeding with all of the chips stacked against him.  VCU is the only team to make the final four after having to win 5 tournament games.  They will next face the 8 seeded Butler Bulldogs, likely to be a fantastic basketball game.

Eric, Mali and Jay get together to break down the NCAA Tournament in all of its gory details!  Favorite teams, Final Four predictions, legitimate upset teams, and teams likely to drop out early are all discussed.  To go along with it, Eric makes some bold predictions, including a claim for a possible 16 over 1 this year (he does point out that it’s not actually in his bracket!).

All this and more in the latest Buckeye Battle Cry Radio Hour!

March Madness 2011: Southeast Region

Written March 15th, 2011 by Joe

Ok, let’s take a look at the much maligned Southeast bracket…I also plead you don’t listen too much to what I have to say, because it may just confuse you more as you try to win tBBC Challenge. I’ve linked to some of our previous impressions as well, so you can make a better guess.

Cakewalk?

This maybe the most difficult region that I have ever tried to predict in recent memory.  On the 1 line is a very solid Pitt Panthers team, but they are a team that can struggle offensively at times.  If they face someone that gets hot from deep not sure they can keep up.  Then you have a 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 seeds that are so similar that it would be hard to call any win by them an upset.  I’m not sure that any team is favored by 8 points or more, with most of them are probably toss up or 3-5 point spreads.

This region also has two teams hurting with lost players.  BYU lost 3rd leading scorer, and main big man, Brandon Davies to team rules while St. John’s also lost their 3rd leading scorer in D.J. Kennedy.  Both losses make these teams vulnerable to first round upsets to Wofford and Gonzaga respectively.  I will speak about Belmont later, and also have Utah State as a team that could pull the 12-5 upset.

At the end of the day I am not sure who to pick.  I am making the safe pick and advancing Pitt, but read along and you will see some stars to watch, under the radar players to watch as well as my sleeper pick and elite 8 picks.

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March Madness 2011: West Region

Written March 15th, 2011 by Jay

The West Region of the 2011 NCAA Tournament bracket presents Duke as the #1 seed, followed by San Diego State at the #2 and UConn at the #3.  The West has as many as six teams that appeared in the top 10 of the AP ranking at some time during the season, a list that includes Tennessee, Texas, and Missouri in addition to the three noted above.  No other bracket has a former top 10 team ranked as lowly as Missouri is ranked in the West, coming in at the #11 seed.  This reflects the Tigers’ struggles late in the season, but also can be seen as a testament to the depth of good teams in the region.

Final Four Fav’s: Looking at the potential matchups in the bracket, it’s hard to pick against UConn as a good candidate to make it to the Final Four.   Read More