At the beginning of the NCAA’s March Madness I wrote about how the underdog Harvard Crimson upset the University of New Mexico, one of my picks to make the Elite Eight, ultimately destroying my West division portion of my bracket from day one. Things didn’t really get better for me after that. (more)
I’m a basketball fan, but outside of the weekly college games on ESPN and keeping up with my Kentucky Wildcats (shut up.) I don’t watch too much college basketball. This is probably why when I was handed my annual NCAA March Madness bracket in exchange for five dollars the other day I immediately started filling it out by “just going with my gut”. This was probably a poor decision. (more)
Boston’s TD Garden will host the East region in the 2012 NCAA Basketball Tournament March 22 -24. 16 of the 68 total teams will tip-off at the Garden with hopes of advancing on to compete in the Elite Eight. The Finals this year will take place at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. (more)
The Boston Globe reported today that Steve Donahue is expected to replace Al Skinner as Boston College men’s basketball head coach “barring a last-minute snag in negotiations.” Donahue led Cornell to the Sweet 16 this season while racking up a 29-5 record. During his ten years at the University he earned a total of 146 wins, advancing the team to three NCAA tournaments. He’s responsible for turning around the Big Red to represent the only Ivy league team to win a pair of playoff contests since the field expanded from 64 to 65 in 1985.
The Eagles are certainly please with Donahue’s resume along with what he stands for in regards to a successful men’s basketball program. “I simply expect our players to give 100 percent on and off the court,” says Donahue. “Off the court, they are going to take care of their academics, and on the court they will take care of each other. Our players will come to practice thinking that we are going to get something done today and get better at each and every practice.” Check for more BC Eagles updates with us at Ace!
The 2009 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is about to set off, and the level of excitement is higher than ever. There seems to be a lesser gap between the top and mid-ranked teams, knowing 19 of the 25 top teams lost in the week leading up to the bracket selections.
Look for UCLA vs. VCU to be a tight game in the Eastern region. UCLA has been able to reach three consecutive Final Fours, but VCU has the potential to create an upset. They were able to knock off Duke in the first round 2 years ago and continued on to lose to Pitt in overtime. VCU will rely on Eric Maynor to keep them going offensively. Maynor has averaged 22.4 points a game this season, making him 11th in the country in scoring.
The Western region will feature Washington vs. Mississippi State. The game will showcase two of the best big men in the tournament, Washington’s Jon Brockman and MSU’s Jarvis Varnado. Varnado leads the nation in shots blocked, and Brockman has led the Pac-10 in total rebounds for three years straight. Washington is ranked 13th in scoring but MSU might be able to counter their attack knowing they are listed 17th in field-goal defense.
Siena vs. Ohio State will be the game to watch in the Midwest region. Siena has been competitive with powerhouse teams such as Kansas and Pitt this year, and is also remembered for knocking off #4 Vanderbilt last season in the first round. Ohio State has struggled defending 3-pointers, but they shouldn’t have an issue with Siena as they shot 33.5 percent from 3 all season. Siena starts a big line up with three guys over 6’5″, but OSU will keep their 7 foot freshmen B.J. Mullens guarding the paint.
The Southern region will showcase Syracuse vs. Stephen F. Austin this afternoon. Syracuse performed brilliantly in the big East tournament, upsetting UConn in 6 overtimes and just falling short of winning the Big East conference. The Orangemen are eighth in the country in scoring, but their opponent S.F. Austin is ranked 2nd in field goal D. Syracuse should be able to come out on top, but it won’t be easy.
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The Providence College Friars ended Pittsburgh’s brief reign as the top-ranked NCAA team last night. Coming off of a tough 19-point loss to Notre Dame, the Friars looked to not only regain their confidence, but to also lock up a postseason spot. With the big win over #1 Pitt, the Friars should be able to finish the season with a winning record – a difficult feat in the contentious Big East.
“We’re in a pretty good situation: we’re in the top half of the best conference in the country,” PC coach Keno Davis told the AP’s Jimmy Golen. “It puts us in the conversation. I’m sure if we had lost, they wouldn’t be talking about us anymore.”
PC will be in action in Chestnut Hill against the Boston College on Friday, February 27th at the Conte Forum.
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North Carolina seniors Tyler Hansbrough and Danny Green became the first teammates to attain a perfect 4-0 record against Coach K on his own court. After the game they walked off with four fingers held high in the air, representing their perfect win streak at the Cameron Indoor at Duke.
Ty Lawson led the #3 ranked Tar Heels to beat the Duke Blue Devils (#5) 101-87, scoring 21 out of his season-high 25 points in the second half. Tyler Hansbrough scored 17 points as they put a stop to Duke’s 14-game win streak at home. This performance put Hansbrough at second on the all-time ACC scoring list with 2,604 points.
Duke was leading at the half 52-44, but UNC pulled away late in the game with a 14-0 run. UNC coach Roy Williams told his boys “the streak is going to stop at some time; lets? just put it off for another year.” The Tar Heels responded and for that they are now in first place in the ACC. These powerhouse rivals are set to square off again March 8th at UNC. Both Duke and North Carolina will be seen as favorites in the upcoming NCAA tournament.
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Al Skinner’s Boston College basketball team pulled off a stunning upset of undefeated and unanimously no. 1 ranked North Carolina. BC had a slim 4 point leave at the half, and hung on to beat the Tar Heels on their home turf. BC guard Tyrese Rice put up 25 points, sophomore Rakim Sanders scored 22, and freshman Reggie Sanders had 17 points off of the bench. BC held NC superstar Tyler Hansbrough to only 21 points, and kept the NC bench in single digits. The Tar Heels were held to just 25% shooting in the second half.
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