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View Full Version : Blanchette: "March Madness hardly that without Zags"



ZagNative
03-24-2009, 09:44 AM
It's always fun to see what Blanchette (http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2009/mar/24/march-madness-hardly-that-without-zags/) comes up with.
Thank heavens for Meech Madness.

Because March Madness is on life support.

We know this because beyond the borders of Zagistan, the biggest story of the first weekend of the NCAA basketball tournament was Jim Calhoun being hospitalized and missing UConn’s opening-round game. The coach was apparently suffering from dehydration, a counterintuitive diagnosis in that he’s usually so full of himself.

Then there were the charming first-round upset winners: Cleveland State and … uh, Cleveland State and … uh …

Finally, the general catatonia was lifted Saturday evening when Demetri (call him Meech) Goodson, Gonzaga’s puckish freshman guard, sallied coast-to-coast for the improbable last-second banker that sent the networks scurrying through their video vaults for footage of UCLA’s Tyus Edney and BYU’s Danny Ainge pulling off similar full-court heroics.
Who can get mad over March when all the teams that are supposed to win, win?

This is why the NCAA tournament needs Gonzaga, now more than ever. They may not be the Little Zags Who Could of a decade ago, but they’re the closest you’ll find standing – and beating the Tar Heels on Friday in Memphis would be the equivalent of a B-12 shot for all concerned.

Surely you know from your weekend math homework that either A) your bracket is in ruins because you’re smitten with Cinderella complex, or B) you’re in the office pool hunt with all the other drones who cleave to the seeds.

The chalk, they call it.

The crock, we call it.

For the first time in tournament history since the seeds were sown, Nos. 1, 2 and 3 in all four regions have advanced to the Sweet 16. They’re joined by two No. 4s (Gonzaga, Xavier), a No. 5 (Purdue) and a No. 12 (Arizona).

That’s right – plucky, gritty Arizona is carrying the flag for underdogs everywhere, with its interim coach and the rap that it didn’t belong in the tournament to begin with. Also with its two first-round draft picks, its McDonald’s All-American point guard and its 25 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances.

With a Cinderella like that, don’t you root for the wicked stepsisters?
True, it’s not as if the underdogs didn’t have an opportunity to win. But if Few is correct, then the pod system is just one more thing stacked against the little guy, along with the criteria the selection committee seems intent on keeping fluid. A few years ago the way a team finished the season was all-important; now it’s the “whole body of work,” which to those schools who can’t get a phone call returned by a Pac-10 or Big East school is the college basketball version of the poll tax."... the college basketball equivalent of the poll tax ..?" Got to love Spokane's own JB!

BobZag
03-24-2009, 09:54 AM
Very good. :D

MedZag
03-24-2009, 09:59 AM
We know this because beyond the borders of Zagistan, the biggest story of the first weekend of the NCAA basketball tournament was Jim Calhoun being hospitalized and missing UConn’s opening-round game. The coach was apparently suffering from dehydration, a counterintuitive diagnosis in that he’s usually so full of himself.

Zing! Good one, John. :D

bballbeachbum
03-24-2009, 04:30 PM
With a Cinderella like that, don’t you root for the wicked stepsisters?

ummm, yes. thanks for the article

GonzagaDynasty
03-24-2009, 05:40 PM
Beat Unc

skan72
03-24-2009, 05:47 PM
That was a great article and a great point about the little guy getting screwed!