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Let's Recap, Shall We?

March 18, 2008

Whenever I make the big bracket predicting post, I always do a follow-up to see how well I did picking the field. Overall, I don't think I did too badly. I'm probably down a little bit from last year, but that's Georgia's fault (and Maryland's, to an extent). Let's just say that, if the tournament turns out to be as wild as the year has been in college basketball, this will be a thoroughly enjoyable three weeks. It'll probably just be chalk, though, just to piss me off.

Alright, let's start at the top with the Number 1 seeds.
My picks: UCLA, Memphis, Texas, Duke
Tourney picks: UCLA, Memphis, Kansas, North Carolina

Not bad, 50%, which is good since I was picking from about six teams. Ty Lawson's ankle healed up nicely enough to get UNC the win at Cameron and carried them through the ACC tournament, securing that number 1 bid. The winner of the Big XII (Kansas) got the 1 seed and runner up went to the 2 seed out west (Texas), so I was pretty close to that call. I'll take it.

Now, on to the conferences.

American East: UMBC Well done, Retrievers! Here's a big rub behind the ears and a thump on the ribcage for you. Enjoy the thrashing Georgetown puts on you.

Atlantic Coast: Duke. I was right, though, in saying that Clemson would win the 2/3 matchup but falter in the championship game. I just took the north side of the 15-501 rivalry to be in that number 1 position. Maryland's meltdown was epic, and just so happened to be exemplified by their meltdown to those same Clemson Tigers. Maryland, you take top honors over NC State for going into the shitter after taking big leads.
My Picks: UNC, Duke, Clemson, Miami(FL), Maryland

Atlantic Sun: Belmont That's three in a row! Well done guys! You secured the flame whip and the golden knife and hunted Dracula down in his grave! Good luck with Duke (seriously, slay them).

Atlantic 14: UMass I didn't realize that arch-nemesis Travis Ford had moved on to UMass. I remember him hitting three pointers from 65 yards out in games against Indiana to stick daggers in their heart. ScruMass! I'm never picking them again. Congrats to the Temple Owls who gooned their way to the title.
My Picks: Xavier
Also In: St. Joseph's, Temple

Big East: What a tourney! Aside from ND bowing out in the first round, this was thoroughly enjoyable. It's also nice to know that not every kid from West Virginia looks like Pittsnogle. Since I couldn't enjoy any Big Ten action, thanks to the Evil Big Ten Empire, I watched a lot of Big East action. Bravo, fellows, bravo. Georgetown did lose for the very first time when seeded Number 1 in the BEast tourney, in the championship game. I should get something for that, and also for dealing with the pain of watching Patrick Ewing, Jr. do something other than fumble the ball out of bounds.
My Picks: Georgetown, UConn, West Effing Virginia, Marquette, l'Universite de Notre Dame du Lac, Pitt, Louisville
Also In: Villanova (my sexy pick for the 12/5 upset on the first day)

Big Sky: Northern Arizona That's three of the last four that the Lumberjacks have been to the final game, and yet they've lost all three. In a fit of rage, Paul Bunyan still whipped out his "axe" and laid waste to several acres of Douglas Fir. The spotted owl population is decimated. A lone Indian shed a tear. Congrats to the Portland St. Vikings for making into the tournament for the first time ever, though.

Big South: UNC-Asheville 7'7" wunderkid Kenny George couldn't carry the rest of the team on his shoulders (I watched the game; conference champ Winthrop (again) did a great job on defense to keep the ball from him). Although the man dunks flat footed and makes a basketball look like a grapefruit in his massive clutches, the Winthrop Eagles continue to dominate the league. Thank God Notre Dame didn't draw them this year.

Big 10+1: Indiana Someone needs to print up cards that read: Blake Hoffarber, crusher of dreams. But, when one dream dies, another is born. Thanks to Hoffarber's last second heroics, he gave the tournament committee enough ammunition to thoroughly screw Indiana and set them as an 8 seed, where they will be playing in...Raleigh, NC! Holy effing hell! That's right, I'm going down to the RBC Center Friday night, and I'm going to try and weasel my way into getting some cheap tickets from some UNC fans hyped up about beating the shit out of Mount St. Mary's. Or Coppin St. Or whomever. Anyway, Wisconsin ended up winning after the rest of the good teams, we'll say, took a couple extra days of rest. Yeah, that works.
My Picks: Indiana, Wisconsin, Purdue, Michigan State

Big XII: Texas Like I said, we'll see how Rick Barnes manages to screw this up. Anyway, Kansas won a helluva game that I got to see around running bags of puke out to the trashcan (now you can see why I haven't blogged much lately). I am taking onus with the tourney for putting a bubble team like Oklahoma in as a 6 seed while Indiana and Butler both, ranked most of the season, get an 8 and 7 seed. Really, fellaz? Do you like anally violating teams from the state that badly (Purdue at a 6 is also a slap in the face).
My Picks: Texas, Kansas, Kansas St., Baylor, Texas A&M
Also In: Oklahoma

Big West: Northridge Well, surprise, surprise. Fullerton made it in. The poor Irvine Anteaters will get there someday. Also, the high-powered Fullerton offense versus the grind-and-go Wisconsin defense could be intriguing. A repeat of A&M-Corpus Christi? We'll see...

Colonial: VCU Wow, the power of the hot cheerleaders didn't work in VCU's favor. Damn. George Mason is the only one in, too. Sad for the Colonial. Let's hope the league picks up next year. And, George need to carry that little guy torch anymore. Just put it down. Kay? Thanks. Now back away. And fear the Gody.

Conference USA: Memphis The EPA was called in to clean up the oil slick emanating from Memphis and Calipari after this. I shouldn't even take credit for picking this crap league.

Horizon: Wright State I'm back on the soapbox as I take this disrespect for the Indiana teams one more step. Butler? A 7 seed? Are you fucking kidding me? It's the same team from last year, which got a 5 seed, went to the sweet 16, gave eventual national champs Florida all they could handle, and they're arguably a better team this year. A fucking 7? And unranked bubble team Oklahoma is a 6? ARE YOU FUCKING STUPID OR WHAT? Thanks. I feel better.

Ivy League: Cornell Talk about mental giants, the Cornell Brown Bears play the Stanford Trees (and not just Robin and Brook) in the first round. Suddenly my 14-whatever on the SAT seems paltry. Very paltry.

Metro Atlantic: Siena My Catholic love pays off. Thank you, St. Catherine.

Mid-American: Ohio The Bobcats got bounced early and now they're off to greener pastures. Rest assured, boys, that you've got a lovely little campus (I've been through it a couple of wife hit a deer not far from it once). Kent State, though, wins the conference.

Mid-Eastern: Delaware St. One of these years, I'm going to remember that this tournament is played in Raleigh and I'll go to it. I'll stick out like a sore thumb, probably, but hell, I love basketball. And, out of nowhere, Coppin St. pulled the upset and landed in the tournament in the play-in game and carrying a sub-.500 record. That's damn near prescient in my book. I just picked the wrong team with State in the name.

Missouri Valley: Southern Illinois Wow, the Colonial and the Missouri Valley down. This is a world I don't want to live in. But I am, and there's still plenty of hot women in it, so I'll just keep plodding along. And, thanks to Georgia's inspired play (hey, I was rooting for them, too), Illinois St. is off to NIT-land.

Mountain West: New Mexico Play a tougher non-conference schedule, Steve. Worked for Arizona, apparently. Or just tell the selection committee you hate your home state. They'll reward you for it handsomely. Seriously. Purdue beat Wisconsin twice, and they only get a 6 seed? Screw you guys. You're a bunch of assbags with shriveled, dried up hearts that pump and oily black substance that looks like crude oil. Oh yeah, UNLV won, but BYU made it as an at large.

Northeast: Robert Morris The Colonials got tripped up and sent off to NITland. Hopefully they can beat Syracuse. More hopefully, Mount St. Mary's, the tourney champs, can beat UNC.

Ohio Valley: Austin Peay The Governors do my proud, finally! Way to go, boys. Congrats. If it's any consolation, Rick Barnes is still coaching Texas, so you guys got a shot!

Pac-10: UCLA The only thing I think I've ever agreed with Doug Gottlieb about is how awful the referees are in the Pac-10. Poor Arizona St. got screwed. But, Herb, my man, you should have left that awful non-conference scheduling bullshit in Raleigh, where they wear it like a cloak of honor. Schedule up, my bald, nondescript friend, and you, too, may be dancing.
My Picks: UCLA, Stanford, Washington St., USC, Arizona
Also In: Oregon

Patriot: American I love America, but apparently the tournament selection committee hates American (and Indiana). First time in the tourney ever? Have a steaming helping of Tennessee, boys.

Southeastern: Vanderbilt I think you'll all cut me some slack for not seeing Georgia rising up and taking four games in a row--three of them in a span of 30 hours or so. Sure, they didn't play anybody all that tough, they were practically on their home court, but still, they manned up in the face of adversity and fought through it. I know another team that wears a lot of the color red that could take a lesson from the Bulldogs here (including something about how to beat teams clearly better than you).
My Picks: Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Mississippi St., Kentucky Florida
Also In: Georgia, Arkansas

Southern: Davidson Alright, let's make it 23 in a row with a big win over gonzaga down in Raleigh. Go Wildcats! Can anyone forward Bob McKillup's phone number to Indiana for me?

Southland: Stephen F. Austin Texas Arlington pulled an upset win of sorts. I have no idea who they are, but I think Hank Hill roots for them, so they must be okay with me.

Southwestern: Alabama St. Mississippi Valley St. made it in. Next year, I vow to watch SWAC basketball anytime ESPNU carries it.

Summit: Oral Roberts IPFW came dangerously close in the semifinals to knocking off the giant praying hands. I'm calling it next year: The Year of the Mastodon! Oral Roberts wins, and plenty of guys named Robert were well pleased around campus in the ensuing celebration. There's something on your chin...

Sunbelt: South Alabama Can you smell what the Sunbelt is cooking? I couldn't pick between USA and WKU, but my love of America made me pick the Jaguars. Oh ho ho! The tourney selection committee hates American (and Indiana) but loves USA! Let's start the chants now! U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-what? They're playing Butler? Fuck. I've suddenly become European and now I'm rooting against USA.

West Coast: St. Mary's San Diego shocks the world and pulls the double dog dare upset, sending three teams from the WCC to the dance. Wow. By the way, I should get credit for calling it that that crusty old curmudgeon Billy Packer would bellyache about the ACC only getting four teams in. If I were the tourney selection committee chairman, first I'd seed the Indiana schools fairly, and second, I'd tell Billy Packer to kiss the meatiest part of my ass and that the ACC schools need to play someone away from home from time to time.
My Picks: St. Mary's, gonzaga
Also In: San Diego

Western Athletic: Nevada Boise State worked the blue turf magic and won the championship. Well done, gentlemen. Now, work it some more and take down Louisville, because any tourney that sees a Rick Pitino-led team bow out in the first round is a success, no matter how much the selection committee screws my beloved Hoosierland teams.

Alright, of the conference champs, I successfully predicted 10 out of 31 champions. Yeesh. Shitty. That's 32.26% Horrible. Predicting the field, though, I had 48 teams out of 65 for a much-improved 73.85%. By the Lunardi rules (picking the smaller conferences as "conference champ"), I would ring in at 56 for 65 for an 86.15% Not bad. That extra +31 helps to start out the counting. Essentially, that means I nailed 25 of the 34 at large berths, which doesn't sound so good until you start to factor in that many of the teams that won their conference tournaments (like Wisconsin and UCLA) made the field anyway. I'm not going to bother correcting for that, but I will just say that I goofed on putting Ohio, Maryland, Arizona St. and Illinois St. in and not putting in Villanova, Oregon and Arkansas. So, there. I guess I'm a Bracketologist now. With that, simply bend over and you might feel a slight discomfort. That would be the screwing given to the Indiana-based schools.


Chemgeek said...

"l'Universite de Notre Dame du Lac"


I would like to see the so-called media experts go back and analyze their bold predictions. I've never seen it done.

Now if you will excuse me, I have an NIT basketball game to watch. Minnesota is going to shoot about 4% from the field. How ugly.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Notice how I was too lazy to put the e accent aigu on the end of the "proper" name of the school.

That's right, folks. Four years of French, right here, but really it was like two years of French and two years of staring lustfully at Teryn Wehr and Elizabeth Enoch.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Also, I should point out, I got corrected about UMBC's mascot in the original in like a lion post.

I've since fixed it. Mad props to Stever for the correction.

Ψ*Ψ said...

how're you liking our old coach, chemgeek?

i was THRILLED to see Florida get stuck in the NIT. hahahaha! i mean, we've been a very unKentuckylike team this season, but at least we're an 11 seed!

Lisa-tastrophies said...

Oh wow! Texas A&M has a basketball team? how the heck did I go to school there for 4 years and not know that? Oh yeah, because all we Aggies do is support our sucky football team that will never win another conference championship (yet, somehow think we are the powerhouse of the Big 12, just because we managed to pull a rabbit out of a hat and beat Texas for two years running) ~ whew, major run on sentence there!
Secretly I am a Kansas fan. Go Jayhawks!

Chemgeek said...


So, do I like Minnesota's new coach? He only improved the program by 122%. From 9 wins to 20 wins!!!! Are you kidding?!?!?! Yes, the 8-10 Big 10 was not great, but that is still a great improvement.

Not beating Illinois in the Big 10 conference probably cost them a bid to the big dance. Just the fact that I can write that last sentence and not laugh is amazing.

Getting beat by Maryland sucked, but Maryland played great and they are better.

The Gopher future looks very good.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Wow, I leave for a couple of days and there's discussion on my blog. I need to drive 13 hours in a row more often!