Sunday, March 9, 2008

How Lucky is Davidson?

-It looks like we might not get that Davidson controversy after all. The 2, 3, and 4 seeds all went down in the Southern Conference tournament on Saturday and Davidson is now an even larger favorite to win the tournament. OK, I see that the 5 seed UNC Greensboro actually has a better efficiency margin (See Pomeroy) than the 4 seed, but this still sounds good for Davidson.

-As I predicted Friday, Marquette's strong perimeter defense was pretty useless against Syracuse. Syracuse mostly took the ball inside, and when they did take a three pointer (only 11), they made those shots. The key was that Syracuse got it inside without committing very many turnovers. The good news for Marquette is that the strong perimeter defense might be of more use in the Big East tournament where Marquette would be projected to meet Notre Dame in the second round.

That Other Championship Game

While most of my engery was spent writing up the minutiae of Saturday's Georgetown-Louisville game, I have two quick comments on Duke-UNC:

First, how hypocritical is ESPN to promote the Speedo guy all day, then criticize a new guy for wearing a Speedo and breaking a stadium rule? And how hypocritical were they for showing the guy do a crotch chop and then apologizing for it? Either you encourage the outrageous behavior or disdain it. You can’t have it both ways.

Second, As my wife wisely said with Duke holding a 2 point lead with just under 4 minutes to play, “What are they thinking? Why are they running the shot clock down with this much time left?” Facing a short shot clock Duke eventually turned the ball over and by slowing things down too early, they blew all of their momentum.


Two quick comments on the MVC tournament:

First, Southern Illinois really blew a chance at an at-large bid with the loss to Northern Iowa. I still see some good numbers (8 quality wins), and I still believe Southern Illinois is one of the better teams in the country, but why would an MVC team with questionable numbers get in when so many deserving teams have been left out in recent years? Well, perhaps because the bubble is so weak, but I still don’t see Southern Illinois getting in with these numbers this year.

Second, this really doesn’t do Illinois St. any favors either. Yes, they didn’t have to play Southern Illinois which made the road to the MVC Final easier, but now Illinois St. has zero top 50 wins on the year. I still think that the MVC’s 8-2 record in the Bracket Busters improved the conference RPI enough that Illinois St. can get an at-large bid, but Illinois St. better make sure they don’t get blown out by Drake on Sunday.