Thursday, March 15, 2018

Sportz' NCAA Tournament Recap - First Round, Day 1

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: Loyola Chicago vs Miami. There were a couple of a good candidates but none of the others had a shot like the one Donte Ingram hit. Down one, Ingram hit a three with 0.3 seconds remaining for the win. Not only did they get the win, but they also had Sister Jean ... their 98-year old chaplain ... give an outstanding interview postgame. Great story.

UPSET OF THE DAY: Buffalo vs Arizona.  Arizona was a popular pick to go to the Final Four as many felt their seed was rather low for their talent. Well, Buffalo wasn't having any of it. The Bulls owned the Wildcats, stomping them 89-68. What was surprising was how Arizona kind of quit in the second half of this game. They showed no fight.  

CONFERENCE OF THE DAY: SEC. The SEC won all four games today (Tennessee, Kentucky, Florida and Alabama). The conference seemingly got no respect from the selection committee with their seeding. The first three won games they were supposed to while Alabama pulled a mild upset over Virginia Tech.

CONFERENCE WITH A BAD DAY: Pac-12. The ACC lost three games today (NC State, Virginia Tech, Miami) and would normally occupy this space, but the Pac-12 wins this by watching Arizona eliminated. This is the first time in decades that one of the power conferences didn't place at least one team in the Round of 32. The Pac-12 finished this tournament 0-3.  

DUD OF THE DAY: Tennessee vs Wright State. Wright State was looked at as a team that could give Tennessee some problems. They didn't .

DOMINANT PERFORMANCE OF THE DAY: Buffalo vs Arizona. I mean, Buffalo looked like a title favorite with all the NBA prospects while Arizona looked like an overwhelmed mid-major.  Unbelievable.

UNDERLYING STORYLINE OF THE DAY: Fading stars. Deandre Ayton and Trae Young will be among the first people picked in June's NBA Draft. Both played alright (Young played better) in their first NCAA Tournament game but that experience was also a one-and-done.

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