2011 NCAA Basketball Tournament: Important Observations 28-32

This round of games was a planned load of disappointment, delivered by boring trucks and unloaded by mismatched workers.

28. Ohio State 75, Texas-San Antonio 46Even on a day when everyone watches basketball, there are still some games that no one sees.
No, I didn’t watch this game. You didn’t either. It wasn’t close and skipping out on it meant we got to have the break between afternoon and evening games back. I showered and ate a snack and cleaned up my couch/living room area. You probably did something like that. Ohio State is good. UTSA is bad, it’s going to be a blowout, so the schedule-makers threw us a bone for a while. This game wasn’t supposed to be watched.

29. kansas 72, Boston 53 — kansas doesn’t destroy teams in the first round like they should.

This round of games got super boring. Really fast. And then stayed that way.

This has happened more than enough times to be statistically significant. The Jayhawks just struggle against these teams that just barely sneaked into the tournament. It doesn’t make sense, but it keeps happening. Even though they haven’t lost many of these games, they are never clear of their first round game early like they should be. Sure, they ended up winning by a bunch, but it wasn’t very convincing. They have formed a bad habit of winning games on the scoreboard without winning much in terms of emotion. It doesn’t’ feel like a blowout, even if the score shows that. Everyone who picked kansas to win their bracket (a non-scientific poll shows that exactly everyone picked kansas or Ohio State this year) can calm down a minute because it’s over.

30. Purdue 64, St. Peter’s 43On the basketball court, size matters.
Seriously, another awful game in this time slot. JaJuan Johnson had to love playing this St. Peter’s team that had borderline 0 post presence and a tallest player in the neighborhood of 6’6.” You don’t realize this much during the season, but when these horrible teams play the good ones in the tournament. E’Twuan Moore teamed up with Johnson to score a bunch of points, just like we all expected. The funny thing about this game is that the announcers kept talking about St. Peter’s “cutting into the lead” or “making a run” when all they were doing was coming within 20 points. As a related side note, St. Peter’s has a horrible mascot. Peacocks are in no possible way strong or mighty or violent. They’re perpetually goofy and adorable.

31. North Carolina 102, Long Island 87 — Why did they schedule all these bad games at the same time?

The only thing chalkier than today’s games is the Chalkster himselfAnother game that was close for a little bit before the higher-seeded team kicked it into gear. UNC started both halves extremely well, but LIU kind of just crept back in it at the end of the first one. In the second half, LIU kept getting kind of close, but not close enough for it to actually be a game. Don’t get me wrong, this was a bad game. A terrible game. But I would expect to see more of the UNC good side than the UNC bad side going forward, which is great for the Tar Heels, because their good side can play. As the score shows, they can score a lot if they need to. Which they do. Because that’s how you win basketball games.

32. Marquette 66 , Xavier 55 It’s a good thing this game happened, because we needed some kind of upset today.
I’m not going to get too thrilled for am 11-6 upset, but this is David/Goliath compared to the rest of today’s action. A 9-seed or a 10-seed winning is never an upset and an 11-seed over a 6 is really only halfway there, but this is all we have for today, so we need to run with it. I mean, we’ll all be pulling for VCU tonight because I have them in he sweet 16 after they took over USC’s spot in the bracket, but that’s the only remaining hope. And even then, it’s still just a 6 over an 11, but VCU is kind of an 11.5-seed because they had to earn their way to that 11-seed. Thanks also to Gus Johnson for keeping this one close.

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