Thursday, March 17, 2005

Tournament forecasts from someone who doesn't watch much college basketball

I feel obligated as a talk show host to give you at least some half-hearted picks for the NCAA tournament. But, I also refuse to take part in the media tradition of lying to you about how much I know about this topic. So, before you consider my predictions, first, consider how little I have seen these teams. I will write a quick review of the top 16 seeds in this years tourney:

Austin Regional:


Team (times I have seen them play)
Duke (10+): I am not sure if this is the way college basketball is these days with the watered down talent, but this is one of the weakest #1 seeds I have ever seen. They have no depth, no consistent scoring, and their best player (Redick) cannot get his shot off when someone is locking him down. Sheldon Williams is nice in the post, but he gets into foul trouble, and there is almost nothing behind him. They are very beatable. And I consider myself a Duke admirer. But this is all Coach K. They are not that great this year.



Kentucky (0): Have not seen them play at all this year. Ashley Judd is cute. And the way Florida rolled them last week has anyone in their right mind concerned.

Oklahoma (10+): Wildly inconsistent. Like Gray and Bookout in the paint, but the guard play is spotty, and even Gray is hit or miss. They are on a decent roll, but again, they seem very beatable.

Syracuse (0): Carmelo Anthony would be a Junior this year. If he was, I would watch them a lot more. From what I understand that white guy from their National Championship team, McNamara, is now maybe their best player. How good could they be?

Syracuse Regional:

UNC (10+): I hate Carolina. Always have (except for Jordan and Mia Hamm). Anyway, they are awesome. The most talent in the country. Felton is great, McCants is a talent, and May is flat-out awesome in the paint. If I had to bet, I would say they are the team to beat in this whole tournament.

UConn (2): Haven’t seen much since last year’s Championship team. They lost Emeka and Ben Gordon, but still are decent. Calhoun is greatness.

Kansas (5-7): They are very talented, but any team that shoots that poorly from the line will not win 6 games in a row. Their best players are awful from the line.

Florida (0): Vernon Maxwell and Dwayne Schintzius were playing the last time I watched these guys regularly. Its been a while. Trust no game I predict involving Florida.

Albuquerque Regional:

Washington (0): I cannot name any player who has EVER played at Washington except Detlef Schrempf.

Wake Forest (3): They are very solid. Very balanced. But, I do tend to overrate the ACC.

Gonzaga (0): This regional has to be very weak if this is the #3 seed. I detest small schools getting high seeds.

Louisville (0): Rick Pitino is a snappy dresser. And Pervis Ellison was a fine Frosh.

Chicago Regional:

Illinois (10+): I really like their backcourt. Head, Williams, and Brown are fine talents, although I think Dee Brown is pretty over-rated. They are a popular pick, but I just cannot get past the fact that they are so dependent on the 3-pointer and have almost no inside game. They are really good, but there will no doubt be a night when the perimeter is not hitting. Then what?

Oklahoma St (8): Like this team a lot. They have Lucas at the point, along with the Graham twins. I really like the way they play defense. They will be tough to bounce.

Arizona (0): I cannot decide whether I watch less Pac-10 basketball or less SEC basketball in the regular season. Never have, except when LSU had Shaq.

Boston College (1): Never thought they were that good. They won’t see week #2 of this tournament.

My Final Four: Duke, UNC, Illinois, and Wake Forest (of course, I readily admit that Duke isn’t good enough to get there, but they were selected by default in that Austin regional.)

Thursday Winners from Bob (I also like calling it “Picking games between teams I really haven’t seen much”): Illinois, Texas, Alabama, Penn, UAB, Arizona, Washington, Pitt, Texas Tech, Gonzaga, Creighton, Wake Forest, Oklahoma, Utah, Iowa, Kentucky


Links:

Dallas Observer article on John Hart and Kenny Rogers …including a few paragraphs on why Rogers is grumpy these days:


The dispute stems from whether Rogers--who is in the final season of a two-year $6 million deal--threatened to walk out and retire if more money and/or more years weren't added to his contract. (None of that came to pass--the Rangers denied his request and Rogers reported to camp on time.) Rogers, through his interview with Grant, denied it went down like that. He said he never issued an ultimatum with an "I'll quit and screw you as a result" kicker. The Rangers, through a piece written by T.R. Sullivan in the Star-T (the first story to detail the private conversation thanks to a leak from within the organization), say otherwise--which is what pissed Rogers off and is why he isn't talking to the vast majority of the media here. In fact, Rogers was so livid that, when a reporter working for a different outfit called him on his cell phone shortly after the Star-T piece ran, Rogers allegedly threatened to kick his ass and called him a "motherf-----." (Again, Rogers declined comment.)

This isn't the first time that Rogers and the Rangers have had a falling-out. Despite the fact that Rogers is one of the longest-tenured Rangers in club history, he lashed out at them last season following the A-Rod trade, criticizing Hart for dealing one of the game's best and saying that it wasn't "what I signed on for."

As with anything else, there are two sides to this story. Somewhere in the middle is the truth. Or maybe the truth is forever lost, deleted and replaced with the selective memories of the parties in question. It's become a lot like that game we played as children--whisper down the lane. You line a bunch of people up in a row. The first person whispers a word into the ear of the guy sitting next to him--apple, let's say. By the time it reaches the person sitting at the end of the line, it's been twisted and reworked--maybe by accident, perhaps by design--so that it doesn't come out apple at all, but something radically different.


Mavs in holding pattern until Dampier returns

Drese fantastic in start

Amazing Race, Episode 3 recap …And as much as I want to hate Boston Rob, I just can’t.

Larry King = $7 million a year


CNN has inked a contract extension with Larry King, keeping the iconic interviewer at the news net through 2009.

Deal is worth close to $7 million a year, Daily Variety has learned, and assures the immediate future of "Larry King Live" while quelling speculation that King's sometimes stand-in Nancy Grace is being groomed as his replacement.


Replay to be expanded in NFL?

Good essay on Soriano

NFL’s Worst Free Agent Signings – Ever

Al Strachan frowns on blue ice

In Nascar, if you ain’t cheatin, you ain’t trying

Leave comments any day for any reason. If you read this or listen to the show and debate in your head whether you should email me or leave comments on the blog, allow me to plead that you leave a comment here. I will read them and post a reply, but then everyone can see your thoughts, not just my email box.

8 comments:

Thunder Jones said...

Sounds like Kenny might be dealing with a little roid rage. I mean he is old and still has stuff... it very well could be pharmaceutically enabled. I'm not making accusations, I just think posting a bolded roid rage is funny.

JR said...

BOB - What are your thoughts on the "blue" ice? I believe the NHL needs to do a better job of promoting the game, but with gimmicks like these, it might as well call itself the XHL when (if) they resume playing...

Anonymous said...

Bob, normally I with you on most of your thoughts, but Gonzaga. You should probably hold off opinion unless you have actually seen them play....they already beat #1 seed washington, ok st. and georgia tech this year. Small or not, that's why they are seeded high....because they are a good team.

Chris said...

Just watching the hearings on roids, and am I alone in thinking that Mcgwire is a bigger ass than we thought?

Brandon said...

Oklahoma has now won 8 of their last 9. Yet Bob thinks they're inconsistent.

JIM said...

-Any chance that the Ticket Top Ten of the Week could be posted on the Ticket website?
It would be nice to have a webpage that you could go to every week, other then the drop page, that you could listen to Ticket Bits.
Plus, you could have a scoreboard on which Ticket Show earns the #1 spot, similiar to the E-Brake of the Week.

-Also, You might want to talk to Razor Reaugh about the Blue Ice that the Rochester Admirals are playing on up in Buffalo this weekend. Razor mentioned this as a solution to bring fans and better tv ratings during an Open Net last year.

Sturminator said...

Brandon-

Show me a team that loses TWICE to Texas Tech in 5 weeks, and loses to a poor, poor Missouri team, and I will show you an inconsistent team. And beating Niagara doesn't change my mind.

Bob

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It's been ages since i posted here. Been sick, busy etc. There are not many games left this season. It has had it's up's and down's. Meet some new Reds i adore. Meet David Ross again. Knew of him when was a Dodger. Missed Sean Casey a lot. Reds then got rid of Austin Kerns. Seen the Reds 9 times this year at Busch Stadium. Saw the Phillies 3 times. Seen The Astros 3 times. Gonna see the Astros for my 4th time September 13th. Gonna go to games in 2 weeks to see Brian Giles.No idea who will make the playoffs.First Choice Reds. Second Choice Phillies. 3RD Astros. 4TH Choice Padres. Padres just because of Brian Giles, Geoff Blum and Trevor Hoffmann. I hope to at least attend one playoff game. But if the Cards don't make it won't go to any. Because i can't afford to travel. But if i had to choose. I'd rather the Reds win the Central and just have to watch them on tv.Seeing them on tv would be better than them not making the playoffs at all.
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