Why can’t they leave the tourney alone?
I’m so sick and tired of hearing about the expansion of the NCAA
Just leave it alone at 65.
I have a difficult enough time finding teams that warrant
inclusion in the top 25 these days.
It’s the greatest sporting event in the country and doesn’t
need to be tinkered with just because there’s no shortage of
coaches who want more job security.
I always hear from college basketball coaches how there are a
much higher percentage of their college football counterparts who
get to the postseason via bowl games.
However, that doesn’t mean the bowl system works. In fact,
the vast majority of the bowl games are completely irrelevant.
Just leave it alone — or else you might get
TEAM OF THE WEEK: The Georgetown Hoyas entered the week
as somewhat of a mystery but left as a legitimate top 10 club after
knocking off Butler at Madison Square Garden and then beating the
Pac-10 preseason favorite, Washington, out west. Greg Monroe was
the star against Butler with 24 points and 15 rebounds, but the
Hoyas have four guys averaging double-figures and Jason Clark has
become one of the most underrated players in the country with his
STUD (PLAYER OF WEEK): Kansas State junior guard Jacob
Pullen averaged 22 points in a pair of wins against Xavier and
UNLV. Pullen finished with 28 in the road victory at UNLV and made
seven of 10 shots from beyond the arc.
DUD: I know that Loyola Marymount is much improved from
a year ago, when the Lions were one of the worst teams in the
nation. But Notre Dame can’t be losing to LMU in South Bend —
not if the Irish want to have any shot of getting to the NCAA
tournament this season.
MID-MAJOR TEAM OF THE WEEK: This might be the easiest
pick of any category all week. Larry Hunter’s Western Carolina club
went out and knocked off Bradley, Campbell and Louisville in a
four-day span. The Catamounts, who got their first-ever win against
a Big East team with the victory against Louisville in Freedom
Hall, have now won nine straight games after being blown out by
GAME OF THE WEEK: This had to be the Crosstown Shootout
between Xavier and Cincinnati. The two programs — which
despise one another — nearly went at it a couple of times,
and after two overtimes, it was rookie head coach Chris Mack and
the Musketeers who came out on top.
WORST LOSS: Boston College losing at home to Harvard.
Not just because of the setback, but because it was the second
straight year that Al Skinner’s team couldn’t get past Harvard on
its own home floor.
WEEK TO FORGET: Vanderbilt — I had high hopes for
the Commodores heading into the season, but Kevin Stallings’ team
is struggling of late with losses to Illinois and Western Kentucky
this past week. Vandy is now 6-3, and Stallings needs to find a way
to get skilled big man A.J. Ogilvy, who is averaging a lackluster
12.7 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, going.
WHY I’M STARTER THAN I LOOK: I’m now 4-for-5 on the
season after picking New Mexico to pull the upset against a ranked
Texas A&M team.
WHY I’M DUMBER THAN I LOOK: I didn’t think Harvard had a
chance in you-know-what of pulling off the upset at Boston College
for the second straight year.
SLIP SLIDING: UCLA coming up short against Mississippi
State just down the road from the Bruins’ campus. Not that there
was much of a chance for Ben Howland’s team to get to the Big Dance
after its brutal start, but this pretty much solidified the fact
that the Bruins won’t be in the NCAA tournament come March.
WELCOME BACK: Cal’s Theo Robertson returned to the team
after missing six games with a foot injury. Robertson played 22
minutes and scored eight points in a win against Pacific.
ALMOST HERE: There’s a reason why UConn coach Jim
Calhoun wasn’t upset even though the Huskies came up short against
Kentucky in Madison Square Garden. UConn played one of the most
talented teams in the nation to a one-possession game without one
of its most talented players. Huskies athletic forward Ater Majok
becomes eligible this weekend and should immediately move into the
TOUGH LOSS: South Florida started out 7-1 but will be
without its best player, Gus Gilchrist, for the next six weeks with
a severely sprained ankle he suffered in practice earlier in the
week. The Bulls lost to Central Michigan in their first game
without Gilchrist, who was averaging 18.8 points and 7.4 rebounds
WEEK’S TOP MATCHUPS:
1. North Carolina vs. Texas at Cowboys Stadium, Saturday
at 2 p.m. ET — The Longhorns will get their stiffest test of
2. Gonzaga vs. Duke in Madison Square Garden, Saturday at 4
p.m. ET — Great neutral-site matchup.
3. Florida State at Georgia Tech, Sunday at 5:30 p.m. ET
— Two of the most talented teams in the ACC.
4. Xavier at Butler, Saturday at 2 p.m. ET — The
Bulldogs got one against Ohio State and will have another chance to
get a quality victory here against the Musketeers.
5. UTEP at Mississippi, Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET — Are
the Miners for real? Tony Barbee’s team will get a chance to show
whether they are or not with a trip to play Ole Miss.