Monday, March 14, 2005

Bracket Analysis: Initial Thoughts

Okay, so I watched a bunch of college games this weekend, and saw all three Wisconsin games (great shot against Iowa, Mr. Tucker!), but I’ve just pumped out a ton of high school comments, so forgive me if I don’t have the crack analysis that you have come to expect from me on Wisconsin college teams. Plus, I watched several of these games at bars, where the distractions around me keep me from being totally tuned-in to the game. In lieu of me gushing about how great the ACC championship game was, or discussing Illinois’ dominance over Wisconsin, here are some of my thoughts on the newly-released NCAA brackets:

1) Someone tell me when the UWM-Alabama game is, since there will be some running going on there. I may get tired watching that one.

2) I like UWM’s draw. They deserved, and surprisingly, received the 12 seed, and Alabama is a good, but not overwhelming team to face at the 5 seed. Boston College will likely be waiting for the winner, and as UWM did with Carl Landry of Purdue earlier this year, I like their chances of running Boston College’s big men into the ground. I don’t know that either victory is likely, but I at least give the Panther a fighting chance.

3) I like Wisconsin’s draw, as well. Northern Iowa, from what I am told, will be a difficult first round game, though I haven’t seen them play this year. However, Kansas is likely lurking for the winner in the second round, and though the Jayhawks can play with anyone when they’re on, if the last 3 weeks have taught us anything, it’s that the Jayhawks aren’t always on.

4) Syracuse is a 4-seed and Michigan State is a 5-seed? Wow, I’d hate to be one of the teams in the Austin regional. Most people think the Syracuse regional is the toughest, but I’d argue that the regional that Syracuse is playing in, rather than hosting, is tougher.

5) So Washington’s a 1 seed, and no one’s seen them play. Well, I’ve only seen them once myself, so I can’t really comment much on the validity of the decision. However, I will say that if the committee’s rationale revolved around the Huskies’ beating Arizona twice, then I’m not too sure about the seeding, because Arizona didn’t blow me away the few times that I saw them this year.

More seeding comments to follow—it’s a long week. Marquette’s in the NIT tonight, and I’ll be interested to see attendance numbers, since none of my season ticket-holder friends is going, and I’m not making the trip downtown for the game, either. If you can’t get me to come to a game, I don’t know who you’re going to attract.


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