Posted Saturday, March 26, 2011 12:36 PM
It’s been a mad, mad March, leaving plenty of college basketball fans to question why the hell they bother following a season’s worth of NCAA action.
Even the most hardcore hoop heads have watched their brackets burn while Kaylee, the perky intern, leads the office pool because: She has a grandma in Arizona, her boyfriend drives a Ram, her neighbor had “the cutest” bulldog growing up, and she watched the Wizard of Oz (for the 1,000th time) just before Selection Sunday and thought that was the universe’s way of telling her to pick Kansas to win it all.
While she’ll probably spend her winnings, including the $10 bucks you confidently threw into the hat, on a new bag, bus tickets and some drinks for her and her equally-bubbly friends (skanks) at the bar this weekend (and not even watch the games), you can take some consolation that you’re not alone in the wasteland of broken brackets.
There are a lot of us out there that thought we had a good grasp on the madness, only to watch it explode like Chris Brown in a dressing room. All the while, witnessing people, who have never heard of the Morris brothers (no they aren’t a pair of video game plumbers), pull near-perfect brackets out of their ass like they ate Gary Parrish, Jerry Palm and Joe Lunardi the night before.
Here are four people who have a better bracket than you:
If you’re like me, March Madness is a family event. And each year, we all put our best brackets forward with a... [More]
Posted Tuesday, March 22, 2011 02:36 PM
March Madness and the mayhem of the WWE cross paths again this year, with the National Championship being played the Monday following wrestling’s biggest show, Wrestlemania, on April 3.
Like last year, I’ve sorted through the remaining 16 teams in the NCAA Tournament and assigned them a wrestler that complements their style, skills and other little quirks.
For the teams included in last year’s “If the Sweet 16 were WWE wrestlers” blog, I’ve stuck with their wrestler. But for the programs who weren’t dancing at this time last season, we have a new slew of WWE Superstars ready to be paired up to the remaining field.
So, without further delay or description, “Coming down the aisle…”
Ohio State is John Cena
The Buckeyes were Cena in last year’s Sweet 16. Ohio State still has all the traits of the WWE’s Golden Boy. It is versatile, able to hit you with power inside or finesse from beyond the arc. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, OSU and Cena are damn good.
Kentucky is The Rock
Another carry-over from last year’s blog, the Wildcats are a lot like the People’s Champ was when he burst on the scene - young, brash and packed with talent. UK's freshmen studs Knight and Jones are a dynamic one-two punch just like the Rock Bottom and the People’s Elbow.
Marquette is Hardcore Holly
Scrappy and unheralded, the Golden Eagles go hand-in-hand with the golden buzzcut of the former “Sparkplug”. Marquette is fundamentally stron... [More]
Posted Saturday, March 19, 2011 11:57 AM
Even the President needs to have some fun.
Barack Obama is under fire for his decision to fill out an NCAA Tournament bracket in the midst of international turmoil in Japan and Libya, as well as plenty of domestic issues plaguing the United States.
Adding fuel to the fire is just how well President Obama is doing with his bracket selections, going 29-3 and an impressive 15-1 for Friday’s second-round slate.
Plenty of conservative voices are questioning the President’s use of time – perhaps paying more attention to the NCAA ins-and-outs than the rise of gas prices or the housing crisis within his borders.
Of course, this smear campaign is complete crap and I’m sure the Prez had his priorities straight before spending five minutes with ESPN’s Andy Katz to fill in the blanks in a prepared field of 68.
It would be a different story if Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan was spending hours debating SDSU’s chances of making the Final Four or Muammar Gaddafi was more concerned with Kyrie Irving’s status than the UN’s demands.
Obama is a man of the people and a huge sports fan – and doesn’t make any excuses for that. Filling out a bracket is just as important as throwing out the first pitch at a Nationals game or hosting the annual Easter Egg Hunt on the White House lawn. These are things the President needs to do to stay in touch with the public as well as keep his sanity in such a high-stress job.
And for those conservative poo-pooe... [More]
Posted Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:09 AM
College basketball, much like a lot of things in life, is defined by a small percentage.
Out of the 346 teams in Div-1 hoops, 73 of those programs reside in the power conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Big East, SEC and Pac-10), making up only 21 percent of the entire NCAA landscape.
But it is that small percentage that holds all the power. That capitalist setup is the reason why so many fans, writers and analyst believe this is a down year for college basketball as a whole.
You can blame a shallow talent pool or bad recruiting classes – or even the NBA for luring away the NCAA’s top talent – for the downfall of league’s like the ACC, Pac-10 and SEC, who just a few years ago were stacked top to bottom with tournament contenders.
But while the masses sob over the “current state” of college hoops and how things used to be, they’re missing what could be the best year ever for the small programs or mid-majors, as the talking heads politely tag them.
Last year’s tournament was a forerunner of the growing strength in the bottom 79 percent of the NCAA. March Madness brackets were busted wide open with teams like Northern Iowa, St. Mary’s, Murray State and Butler shocking power conference opponents, laying the ground work for 2011.
This season had two mid-major teams out of the Mountain West Conference, BYU and San Diego State, permanently parked in the Top 10 in the polls and in the running for a No. 1 seed in the tournament heading into t... [More]
Posted Sunday, March 13, 2011 09:25 PM
Duke fans, and Duke haters alike, must feel like a bit of history is repeating.
After knocking off North Carolina for the ACC Tournament title Sunday afternoon, the NCAA selection committee threw Coach K’s kids a bone, making them the fourth No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Not only was Duke awarded a top seed, which it probably didn’t deserve, but it was also placed in the weaker regional – in my opinion – of the four regional brackets.
The Blue Devils’ path in the West Regional will cross with either Michigan or Tennessee in the third round, perhaps Arizona or Texas in the regional semis, and may very well set up a date with No. 2 San Diego State from the MWC or a dog-tired UConn squad in the regional final.
Duke was dealt a similar card in last year’s NCAA. After finishing with another ACC Tournament title, in a very shallow conference, the Blue Devils were tagged as a No.1 seed in the South Regional. Among the notables in that regional were No. 2 Villanova, No. 3 Baylor, No. 4 Purdue and No. 5 Texas A&M.
When compared to the other regionals’ top teams, the South seemed like a steal for Duke, while other top seeds like Kansas, Kentucky and Syracuse were grouped among programs like Ohio State, West Virginia and Kansas State. And while the top seeds dropped liked flies throughout March, the Dukies kept rolling, eventually beating Butler in the national title game.
This season seems to be set up for a similar result. Ohio St... [More]
Posted Thursday, March 10, 2011 12:23 PM
If art and life imitate each other, than sports and life are a pretty tight fit as well. Just look at the recent Charlie Sheen mess.
The former Two And A Half Men star has fallen off the deep end. He’s boozing and throwing God knows what into his body, lashing out violently, riding an emotional roller coaster while giving into his crazy sexual urges with two live-in “Goddesses”.
And the world of sports has followed suit, with some of the biggest athletes in the biz showing that even the most finely-tuned machines have a little “Tiger Blood” in them.
Here are a few athletes that only Charlie Sheen would be proud of:
The Detroit Tigers ultra-talented slugger could probably go shot-for-shot with Sheen.
His drinking has got him in trouble in the past but his most recent run-in with the law proves that Cabrera needs help. Reports surfaced that Cabrera yelled at police officers to shoot him during his infamous DUI stop in February.
“F-ing shoot me. Kill me,” Cabrera screamed at cops, according to a report from the thesmokinggun.com.
"Do you know who I am?" he asked. "I'm Miguel Cabrera. I play for the Detroit Tigers. You don't know my family."
“Winning” is great, according to Sheen, but losing just plain sucks.
Ask the Miami Heat, who allegedly shed some tears following their recent loss to the Chicago Bulls. And that’s not where the emotional breakdown stopped.
Posted Thursday, March 03, 2011 12:55 PM
Hot off his revealing interviews and setting the world record for acquiring 1 million followers on Twitter in one day, Charlie Sheen is making noise at sportsbooks with a ton of interesting prop bets involving the controversial movie and TV star.
PaddyPower.com has posted specials surrounding Sheen and his wild lifestyle including odds on if Sheen will go to Prison (+400), be sectioned (+200), enter rehab (+500) or be hired back on for another season of his show Two And A Half Men (+2,500).
Props are also available on his personal life, including his two live-in “Goddess”, Bree Olson and Natalie Kenly. Sheen is priced at +800 to marry both his “Goddess”, +300 to marry a Playboy centerfold and +3,300 to get back together with ex-wife Denise Richards. Sheen is also set at +2,000 to move into the Playboy Mansion.
For those prop bettors looking for some long-shot wagers, Sheen is set at +800 to win a Screen Actors Guild Award, +1,000 to win a Golden Globe and +5,000 to win an Oscar – all of which must happen by 2015.
Also available for wagering is “Will Charlie Sheen go AWAL for more than seven days” (+1,000), “Will Sheen announce he’s a Scientologist” (+2,000), and “will Sheen become a born-again Christian” (+2,500) by the end of March 2011.
Sheen recently joined Twitter following an interview on The Howard Stern Show, and quickly became the most popular voice on the social media site.
Books are offering odds on his Twitter success as w... [More]
Posted Tuesday, March 01, 2011 11:54 AM
The San Antonio Spurs have been able to topple all comers on the hardwood this season, but finally lost to their biggest opponent – age - this past week.
The Spurs will be without point guard Tony Parker for at least two weeks due to a calf injury, heading into Tuesday’s road date with the Memphis Grizzlies.
Injuries to its backcourt have plagued San Antonio for the past few seasons, keeping the veteran-laden Spurs from competing with the Lakers, Mavericks and Nuggets in the Western Conference.
Last season, Parker missed 26 games with a bevy of different ailments – everything from hip and hand injuries to food poisoning. San Antonio head coach Greg Popovich is as savvy as they come and has been through this before. He’s inserting backup guard George Hill into the starting five and will rely on shooting guard Manu Ginobili to handle the ball handling duties.
"It's going to be even rougher," Ginobili told reporters. "Of course, when Tony's on the court, the whole dynamic of the team changes because he is so good at breaking the first line, finding open teammates or finishing."
Ginobili is no spring chicken either, missing 38 games due to ankle troubles two years ago. And, much like a car with a clunk in the engine, one broken part can easily lead to another.
The Spurs enter Tuesday with an impressive 34-23-2 ATS mark, despite being the top team in the NBA – a role that can suck the line value out of even the most consistent clubs.<... [More]