Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Bouncing Away

With 8 minutes left in the game, Oden blocked a shot. Florida picked up the loose ball, kicked it across court, and Humprey hit a three. With 6 minutes to go, Oden blocked a shot, the ball rolled around on the floor until it was tied up and the possession arrow favored Florida. With 3 minutes to go, Florida missed a wide-open layup, but again Ohio St. could not get the loose ball.

Finally Oden did not have foul trouble. Finally, he had the tournament game everyone was waiting for: 25 points, 12 rebounds, 4 blocks. And there was Conley forcing 4 steals and showing why he was the team MVP by scoring 20 points of his own.

But, it was the things they could not do that seemed even larger. They could not pick up the loose balls. At times, to avoid fouls, Oden played tentatively. And, by the time Ohio St. seemed to ratchet up the intensity, they were already down double digits.

Somewhere along the way, the season got cloudy. I claimed there were 7 title contenders. But in the end, there was only one. The team returning 5 starters, the defending national champs, would not be denied.

Blog Most-Memorable Team
Eric Maynor with the Dagger!
Ron Lewis for three!
Jeff Green banks it in!
Arron Afflalo cannot be stopped!
Jonathon Wallace for the tie!

The first three were all featured heavily in "One Shining Moment" after the game, but I thought the other two, which came in upsets of Kansas and North Carolina, were equally important in telling the story of this year's tournament.

In Other News
How shocking was the decision by Altman to take the Arkansas job instead of the Iowa job?! More tommorrow.