Five Things You Missed
Keefer digs into a City Council controversy in Idaho
The preseason No. 2 team finishes 35-5 and wins 16 in a row to close the season, culminating with a national championship. No dominant team in college basketball this year?
Tonight, the No. 1 overall seed takes on a team once ranked No. 1 and now playing its best basketball. On one side is Louisville, the favorite when the field was announced, trying to keep the national championship trophy in the state of Kentucky.
Even with limited drama—none of the regional finals were particularly thrilling—the NCAA Tournament is a wonderful thing, the perfect blend of fairness and unpredictability.
To measure the unpredictability of this year’s NCAA Tournament, consider two items that didn’t make this column: Gonzaga, a 32-win team on a 15-game win streak, didn’t survive the first weekend, and Harvard, a 14 seed, won its first ever Tournament game.
Yesterday was a relatively drama-free Selection Sunday. Joe Lunardi was a perfect 68 for 68, as Middle Tennessee State, St. Mary’s, Boise State, and La Salle claimed the final spots in the field. Louisville, Gonzaga, Kansas, and Indiana earned the top seeds.
There wasn’t an abundance of wild finishes this weekend, but there were some incredible individual performances (see below). Memphis, mentioned in this week’s column, is one of five teams unbeaten in conference; another, Gonzaga, has won its last six games by an average of 24 points.
It may not have been a particularly memorable weekend, but there were exciting finishes across the country. Some of the teams mentioned below, as well as Gonzaga and Michigan State, continue to impress, while other contenders have looked shaky of late.
The fact that the Michigan-Wisconsin game was not the wildest of the weekend tells you something – in this case, that there was a five-overtime game. In a week full of upsets, this weekend was no different. In addition to some of the surprises mentioned below, California won at No. 7 Arizona on Sunday.
The sports talk around the water cooler this morning probably isn’t about college basketball, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t an exciting weekend for the sport.