Saturday, March 19, 2016
Sportz' NCAA Tournament Recap - First Round, Day 2
Just a quick recap of what I saw in my Sportz Room -- filled with TVs that I can watch all four games going on at the same time.
GAME OF THE DAY: Northern Iowa vs Texas. The night session had a few great games. The St. Joe's-Cincinnati and Notre Dame-Michigan games were awesome. But the Panthers and Longhorns had a back and forth affair that had a big shot by Texas to tie the game ... but a half-court buzzer beater to win it. In my life ... and I am nearly 41 years old ... I don't remember a half court shot to win a game during the NCAA tournament. Stunning.
UPSET OF THE DAY: Middle Tennessee vs Michigan State. Despite being a No. 2 seed, Michigan State was most likely the 2nd or 3rd favorite to win this tournament. They were experienced, they had a POY candidate, they have Tom Izzo and his historically great tournament resume. But they just didn't do what they needed to today and became just the 8th No. 2 seed to lose to a 15-seed in tournament history.
CONFERENCE OF THE DAY: Big East. A day after Seton Hall was upset, the Big East had a pretty good day. Villanova and Xavier flexed their muscle and put away their opponents.
CONFERENCE WITH A BAD DAY: Pac 12. Another tough day for the Pac-12. California and Oregon State both lost as the better seeds. They weren't alone, though. The Big 12 had the same thing happen (West Virginia, Texas).
DUD OF THE DAY: Texas A&M vs Green Bay. People were giving Green Bay some run as a team that could be a possible Cinderella. Well, they really didn't come close to that against an Aggies team that seems dialed in.
DOMINANT PERFORMANCE OF THE DAY: Oregon. The Pac-12 may be crumbling in the Dance, but Oregon, ya know that weakest No. 1 seed, pounded Holy Cross to easily advance. In a day filled with upsets and close calls, the Ducks swam right by.
UNDERLYING STORYLINE OF THE DAY: Upsets. Yesterday I said that it wasn't shocking to see the 7 "upsets". Well, today was a bit more shocking. Michigan State losing in the first round? What? I mean, seriously? Then West Virginia ... another team I thought would go far ... gets taken out by Stephen F Austin. Hawaii wins their first ever NCAA Tournament game by beating a Cal team that has NBA players on it? Then Syracuse, who many thought shouldn't make the tournament, goes out and pounds Dayton. What a couple of days!
*THANK YOU NCAA for changing up the floors. I have complained for years that these blue and black plain floors were horrible on television and it was so difficult to tell where you were watching a game. I love the floor plans and the colors and the city name prominently displayed. My only gripe now is that I wish the color scheme matched the arena, city or host team. Take Raleigh, for example. The floor colors are purple, dark blue and light blue. If you live in Raleigh, those are the worst colors imaginable. Purple represents rival East Carolina, dark blue reps Duke and light blue ... well that's the hated Tar Heels. Have it red for them. Maybe Des Moines could have had a gold color for host Iowa State and even the nearby Hawkeyes. Providence could have used the black and Denver could have the light blue.
*The ACC is 6-1 right now, with only Pitt losing (and that was a close one to Wisconsin). UNC, Duke, Miami and Virginia play again tomorrow and all should be favored.
*Man Doug Gottlieb has a weaselly voice.