I think I like that even more than the excitement of opening round EIGHT-ER-NINE!!! Ahhh, redneck humor, you fellas are missing out. So anyway, the final four is set. And we've got the matchups everyone expected. LSU vs UCLA and George Mason vs. those Gators. (Sidenote - Speaking of those Gators, I really enjoyed what I believe to be our first hate comment. Thank you anonymous, please keep returning and I promise we can irritate you as much as possible)
Now, this Final Four will provide us with no #1 seeds and story lines about as sexy to the casual fan as big baby in a one size fits most dress. Sorry CBS, your work about how talented Rudy Gay is, Redick's quest for validation, Morrison's inner demons, or how how Josh Boone manages his time playing basketball AND being a weird asian guy for the Black Eyed Peas will have to go unused.
So we've got a bunch of surprise teams. The weird thing for me is, I just don't care. This tourney has been one of the most competitive overall that I can remember. You'd think I'd be loving it, yet I'm not. I have no reason for it, nor can I explain it, but it is what it is. Nonetheless, I wanna give the Final Four team there pub and a breakdown (like I have any idea at this point) of what should happen.
George Mason -
Shock the world...and they did. This team played the toughest path and some GREAT team ball in route to Indy. UConn's ability to stop playing for stretches caught up with them in a game I gave GMU little chance to win. Also, it shows, ONCE AGAIN, that depth is pointless in the NCAA tourney and may actually hurt you. However, if that GMU/Conn game goes to 2OT, the Huskies win by 10. This team is solid, and BARELY is the most surprising FF team based on how they've played in the tourney.
To me, this team is the best one left. Noah has been the best player in the tourney and they've had timely perimeter play to compliment it. They were a terrible matchup for nova and it played out as such. (Also, UConn and Nova were a couple of retards** in just shooting lots of crappy runners and floaters) If someone said, "money on who wins it now?" I'd go with the boys from Gainsville. HOWEVER, I think GM has a great shot at knocking them off in the natty semis.
**(FYI - this was the front page article in the Coshocton Tribune last Friday with the picture on the right being about 1/3 the page. I wish I was making this up. I'll leave it to you guys to debate which guy in the picture is funnier.)
Florida over GMU 71-68
What do we know about this team? I would argue we know they can beat really, really stupid teams. Anymore in college basketball, that's pretty good. Plus, someone had to win that awful region they were in, and with gonzaga choking and Memphis thinking an elite 8 game was going straight to the "And 1 Mix Tape", UCLA finds themselves in Indy. Also, I'm not sure how Memphis played 4 games without a fight breaking out. At the end of the Memphis/UCLA game, I was just hoping they had enough cameras to cover all the punches about to be throw, but somehow none were.
If you said to me, "there's a team that
a) can't shoot
b) has terrible guard play
c) is borderline awful at FTs
d) likes to physically maul you inside on D"
I'd say in response, that that team is the antithesis of a legit FF contender. Yet somehow, LSU find themselves there. I'm not sure how this team beat Texas. I'm not sure how they all don't foul out. I'm not sure how a team that has NO DECENT SHOOTERS is in the FF, but yet, they are. I'd have to figure this strategy would have to stop working eventually. Right? Anyone?
LSU over UCLA 53-52
That's right folks, an all SEC final. Now, listen, that doesn't mean the SEC was a great conference this year. In fact, they were pretty bad. I'd say barely above the Pac-10, and right with the Big XII to place 4th or 5th among the power conferences. The NCAA tourney is about matchups and surviving. The Big 10 had two FF teams last year and not a single elite 8 in this one. Now, was last year's Big 10 better? Hell no. Your two best teams does not a conference make.