*Unnumbered but still crucial observation- what happened to that gap in between the late afternoon games and the evening games? Where did it go? I wanted to shower and take a nap, but didn’t have any time or general willpower to break away from the games today. Is this a product of the 4-network televise-a-thon? Is there any way I can blame this on TruTV? Because I’d like to.
13. Florida 79, UC-Santa Barbara 51 — Even the biggest and best dances have that one turd in the punch bowl.
This wasn’t even a game as much as it was just Florida practicing. The Gators kicked UCSB in the gonads early and they stayed down. It was never even close. If anyone at Florida has been hearing about this whole overseeding speculation (it happened in this case) they certainly did all they could to shoot down that talk. They looked good. But I still think I’d pick either UCLA or Michigan State over them to win in the next round. If there was another lesson to learn from this game, it’s that the best way to win a game by 30 points is to hurry out to a 30-point lead in the first 10 minutes and then just keep it.
14. Connecticut 81, Bucknell 52 — Kemba Walker is the most exciting player in the tournament.
This shouldn’t even be up for debate. He had 18 points on Macculloch (11, get used to that substitution) shots (that’s efficiency, Kyle) to go with 12 assists, 8 rebounds, 2 steals and only 2 turnovers. That’s about as good of a stat line as you could possibly ask for. I like Jimmer, I love Nolan Smith, but I am in love with Kemba Walker as this tournament’s best player. Besides putting up all thee great numbers, He also plays pretty much the entire game. I don’t know the exact time he played today, but that team needs it from him every possession and he’s always there to make the offense happen. He’s just good.
15. BYU 74, Wofford 66 — Naming your son Jimmer legally classifies as child abuse.
To get it out of the way, he’s good at basketball and he makes all these crazy shots. That’s cool. What you aren’t ready for is the announcers who don’t know anything about the rest of the team and talk about Jimmer every sentence for 2 hours. Every time you hear the name, it snowballs a little bit on you and by the end of the game, you’re just furious that his name isn’t just plain Jim. I’m more than a little surprised that having an obscure name isn’t on the BYU Conduct contract. In retrospect that may have been changed to allow him to play there.
16. Wisconsin 72, Belmost 58 —This four network broadcasting tag-team is totally working.
I watched all four of these games at the same time. It didn’t hit me that it had really happened until the end of this game, but I had been flipping back and forth and watching multiple games at the same time for the entire length of the game. It’s important to note that the more sports-related lesson I learned was that the better teams can always pull away when they need to. Belmont, to my delight really hung in this game until right around the 8-minute TV timeout, then Wisco turned it on and won by a comfortable 14. And the crazy part is that even when it was close, you still knew that they were going to pull away.