Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sorry Syracuse

Wow...I'm really surprised by the NCAA Tournament selections. I honestly didn't think West Virginia would get in so it wasn't a surprise to see them left out. However, seeing Syracuse left out was a major shock. Apparently the committee believed the Big East was down this year...that's the only reason I can think of that they wouldn't take at least 7 Big East teams. The 'Cuse did struggle at times this year but appeared to be poised to grab a spot in the Big Dance. Obviously, they're early exit from the Big East Tournament killed their chances.

The omission of Drexel could be the NCAA's biggest error. Despite nonconference wins at Syracuse, Villanova and Creighton as part of a profile that included 14 road/neutral wins, the Dragons likely were punished for their fourth-place finish in the CAA. Kansas State became the first major conference team in this era to end with 20-plus wins, 10-plus conference wins and a fourth-place or better finish in league play and miss the NCAAs. Not something to brag about.

As far as teams that did make the NCAA, I was surprised that Florida was the #1 overall. I felt Ohio State or Kansas had the best claim for the #1 overall. Their bracket is pretty open until the potentially face Wisconsin in the Elite 8.

North Carolina could face a fiesty (and underrated) Marquette in the 2nd round and Texas in the 3rd round. If they navigate their way through that mess, they end up with Georgetown in the Elite 8. Kansas could have a tough road with Kentucky or Villanova hanging out there. Ohio State appears to have the clearest road to the final four with their number 2 seed being Memphis. Memphis is good...but probably not the same as Georgetown, Wisconsin or UCLA.

Should be an interesting tournament. A little disappointed in some of the seeding and selections, but overall, they did a good job. Once the NIT bracket is out, I'll let you know what I think of West Virginia's chances in that tournament.

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