Monday, March 17, 2008

March Madness

Well, the bracket is out...

...and WCBN Sports is hard at work. We'll have a Selection Sunday Reaction Show on the WCBN Sports Podcast tomorrow night (including our thoughts on who the committee snubbed, how the game locations impact each region, which region is the toughest to pick, who has the easiest road to the Final Four, which #1 seed runs into trouble first, etc.) and then we'll be making our picks on the WCBN Sports Podcast Wednesday night (sleepers, major upset picks, Final Fours, Championship game, and Champion picks), so you can get some last-minute bracket help from WCBN Sports.

For now, we'll leave you with a couple of notes...

1. Ohio St. is out -- they were 2-10 against the RPI Top 50 (Ohio St. had an RPI of 50), and although their strength of schedule was decent (16), their 9-4 record against a weak non-conference schedule simply wasn't good enough. They had a big win against Michigan St. at the end of the Big Ten regular season, but their loss to the Spartans in the Big Ten Quarterfinals, combined with a remarkable amount of upsets in other conference tournament, did in the Buckeyes.

2. Michigan St. is a #5 seed, and they have a tough draw -- they play in the South Region (Memphis is the #1 seed, and the road to San Antonio goes through Houston), and they'll start off in Denver against a dangerous Temple team. The Owls are led by Dionte Christmas, who, along with athletic guard Mark Tyndale, form a strong tandem in the backcourt. Despite getting off to a 6-8 start, Temple has rebounded with an 11-5 record in the A-10, including a 19-point win over #3 seed Xavier (West Region). Look for Temple to give the Spartans fits, especially with their scary speed and shooting ability from beyond the arc. If MSU can get past Temple, they'll play the winner of Big East Tournament champ Pittsburgh and Oral Roberts, who can also hit the triple, with guards Robert Jarvis and Moses Ehambe leading the way. By the way, this all precedes a likely meeting with Memphis in the Elite Eight, so Tom Izzo has his work cut out for him if he hopes to bring State to San Antonio.

Call me bitter, but without the Wolverines in the tournament, I've gotten used to rooting against the Spartans and Buckeyes... this year, the committee has helped us out.

Final Reminder: Listen to Extra Points on WCBN tomorrow at 6 PM to hear the WCBN Sports crew breakdown Michigan hockey's 2-0 series sweep over the University of Nebraska-Omaha, Michigan basketball's shooting display against Wisconsin, and Rich Rodriguez's first practice teaching the Wolverines the spread offense, which was open to the media, including our very own Tony Bolton and Stu Zaas.

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