It’s a Happy Monday for me because-while my trip to Greensboro was disappointing (I know Georgia Tech is a tough team-but I did NOT expect a first round loss in the ACC Tournament), my trip to North Carolina was not.
First of all, kudos to WNST.net’s own Sam Angell-who directed me towards a place called Biscuitville. Much like many things in life, you don’t have to know you’ve been searching for something in order to find it….
I would also like to send a shout-out to a place called “The Cook-Out”, which was in the neighborhood of Elon University. How many freaking colleges are in that general area? And I’ll throw in a plug for Guilford Golden Ale….
…but I will not confirm nor deny that the current scrape on my nose has anything to do with trying to open a Guilford Golden Ale in my hotel room despite not having a bottle opener.
Let’s see what everyone has to say….
1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Terps get 4 seed, headed to Spokane to face Houston
The 4 is even higher than I thought they would get. I presumed there were a definite 5 after the loss to the Yellow Jackets.
That being said, there’s no doubt in my mind that they would GLADLY trade spots with a team like Notre Dame just to get out of the INSANE Midwest region.
Talk about a gauntlet…
Kansas. Ohio State. Georgetown. Maryland. Michigan State. Tennessee. Oklahoma State. UNLV. Northern Iowa. Georgia Tech.
I feel like taking a page from Seth Meyers and Jerry Seinfeld and saying “REALLY?”
For as much of a sting as it is for Maryland, it is clearly much MORE of a sting for the Jayhawks-as the best team in the NCAA Tournament deserves better. Much better in fact.
That being said, this is the NCAA Tournament. Nothing is easy. I never thought Maryland was a Final Four team myself, but I think getting back to the Sweet 16 is an important measure for this team, and that won’t be easy with the Spartans potentially looming in Round 2.
2. The Sun’s Ken Murray says Morgan State got 15 seed, headed to Buffalo to face West Virginia
Todd Bozeman’s club certainly deserved to not be doomed to a Number 16 seed. We talked to Reggie Holmes last night on our “Selection Sunday” special on AM1570 WNST; and we pointed out that there is something-mentally-to be said about going into a game like this knowing that you only have to win a game-not rewrite history.
I know there is a history of #15 seeded MEAC teams beating #2 seeds (Coppin State over South Carolina, Hampton over Iowa State); and there MIGHT be an argument that the ‘Eers are similar to South Carolina or Iowa State-as those were teams with great guards but not a whole lot of size (Iowa State had lost Marcus Fizer a season earlier).
That being said, this WVU team has HORSES. De’Sean Butler and Devin Ebanks aren’t JUST good combo forwards. They’re absolute thoroughbreds. They control the offense and they’re 6’8″ and 6’7″ respectively.
There’s nothing the Bears can do to answer that, even if Kevin Thompson has some success inside.
3. CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd says Terrapins ‘dark horse’ candidate to reach Final Four from Midwest bracket
I’ve never thought Maryland was a Final Four team myself-although I heard a few national analysts who were at the ACC Tournament tell me they were starting to think they might be.
If the Terps are going to be that “dark horse”, they’ll have to regain the emotional edge that CLEARLY was gone Friday night against the Jackets.
If they show up flat-they’ll struggle against Houston, and they’ll have no chance against Tom Izzo’s club.
If they show up with a chip on their shoulder, they’re capable of winning a lot of games.
But it will be hard to use the crowd at the Spokane Arena to try to create an edge.
4. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Gary Williams-Tom Penders provide intriguing coaching matchup
It is rare to get a 1st round matchup of coaches with 600+ wins. What makes this particular matchup special is the fact that you have two 600+ win coaches who have a history together.
Gary Williams is 2-1 all-time against Penders (he’s also 2-1 against Izzo for the record); splitting two meetings with George Washington in the BB&T Classic, and topping Texas in the 1995 NCAA Tournament.
And before we move on from the Maryland-Houston matchup, let me point out that there are two things I DO like about Houston. One-their city is the home of this person….
AND….It is hard for me to have that much venom towards a team called the Cougars…
5. Washington Post’s Steve Yanda says Selection Sunday was more ‘relaxed’ at Comcast Center this year than last year
And of course it should have been.
That being said, as there was less tension, there was also less jubilation in College Park-as no one was overly thrilled with having to take a trip to Spokane. Eric Hayes mentioned that last night when he joined our “Selection Sunday” special on AM1570.
It’s not just because Spokane is kind of a lame city-it’s because asking family, friends and fans to try to travel from Baltimore, Washington or other points in the area to Spokane is very difficult.
I’ve never understood why the NCAA continues to deliver events to places like Spokane, Boise and Buffalo. The HSBC Arena in Buffalo got Tournament games back this year after hosting them just 3 years ago!
These cities make places like Detroit and Cleveland appear downright appealing!!!
6. The Daily Athenaeum’s Brian Gawthrop says Mountaineers ‘disappointed’ to get #2 seed, opener against Morgan
And after winning the Big East Tournament, they probably deserved a #1 seed. That being said, they’re not in a TERRIBLE bracket, as I think Kentucky is just as vulnerable as Duke amongst the top seeds. When your team is lead by freshmen (as the Wildcats are), there is a chance you might well lose early.
And no matter what happens Friday in Buffalo, there are DEFINITE areas where Charm City > West Virginia….
7. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Brian Matusz went 5 innings as Orioles beat Phillies Sunday
Which is a GREAT sign, as he became the first O’s pitcher to work through the 4th inning in Grapefruit League play.
That being said, they need to be seeing 5 innings from other pitchers now as we’re about halfway through Spring Training. But if this is a sign that Brian Matusz is ready to REALLY pitch come Opening Day, that’s a MAJOR plus for the Orioles.
8. Carroll County Times’ Rich Dubroff says Brian Roberts headed back to Baltimore to see back specialist
We KNEW this was a bigger situation than Dave Trembley and the Orioles wanted to let us know.
What do the Orioles do now? Stacey Long from Camden Chat threw out Mark Loretta during her visit with Drew Forrester this morning on “The Comcast Morning Show” on AM1570. That name makes sense, as he is a player that could be acquired without having to give anything up anything. Mark Loretta could wear Orange & Black until B-Rob was healthy again, and then make a decision about what to do with Loretta.
My suggestion was this guy…..
9. The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says ‘crawling to Cleveland’ probably no longer an option for Troy Smith
Has any team ever made it more clear that they WEREN’T interested in a player than the Browns have with Troy Smith?
“Troy wants to come to Baltimore, huh? Let’s go get Seneca Wallace. AND let’s go get Jake Delhomme. Is Craig Krenzel available?”
I’m still surprised the Cardinals haven’t made a move to acquire some QB depth. Not that I think Troy Smith would necessarily be any sort of answer, but I do know that there are a bunch of Ohio State fans in the Phoenix area. It would likely be a popular move.
10. Maryland Official Site previews matinee lacrosse battle with Penn today at Ludwig Field
Dave Cottle’s squad is off to a great start this season, and certainly should continue today against the Quakers-even if the game comes during Spring Break.
Here’s this week’s “OldLineLax7″ Poll….
6-Mt. St. Mary’s
Hopkins is fortunate that everyone else lost….
11. Daily Racing Form’s Marcus Hersh says Preakness winner Rachel Alexandra won’t face Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Zenyatta at Apple Blossom Invitational
Which means that horse racing’s one shot at relevance outside of Triple Crown season is now gone.
In the meantime, enjoy pictures of Rachel Hunter….
12. WNST.net says Baltimore Mariners topped New Jersey Revolution at 1st Mariner Arena
I heard some reports that before the game, there was plenty of fist pumping in the New Jersey locker room…..
And finally, I leave you with this.
I love Steve Francis. He had a HELL of a year for Gary Williams, even if the Terps lost to St. John’s in the Sweet 16. BUT….clearly his lack of playing time in Orlando is effecting his sideline demeanor…. (Thanks Deadspin!)
Flexing my mic muscles since 1983….