I’M ASSUMING NOBODY GOT HIS OR HER BRACKET TOTALLY SHREDDED YESTERDAY, given that none of the grand titans fell. The biggest upset was Harvard (a 10.5-point underdog) over New Mexico, but not sure how many around here were putting great faith in New Mexico to advance deep into the tournament. Maybe I’m wrong.
The story of Thursday was the close calls. Gonzaga escaped a scare from Southern, which was vying to become the first No. 16 seed to beat a No. 1. No. 13 Davidson probably should have beaten No. 3 Marquette — we mentioned that fishy Vegas line of 3.5 the other day — but the Golden Eagles rallied from nine points down to win it 59-58.
Cal over UNLV was a mild upset, as was Wichita State over Pitt, Colorado State over Missouri and Oregon over Oklahoma State. None of those Vegas spreads was greater than 4.5 points, though.
ANOTHER 16-PACK OF GAMES TODAY, starting with Duke-Albany at 12:15 p.m. All four ACC teams that made the tournament are in action. N.C. State plays Temple at 1:40, Miami plays Pacific at 2:10 and UNC plays Villanova at 7:20. I’ve got Swofford’s crowd winning all four of these matchups — they’re all favored to do so by at least 4 points — but we’ll see.
JMU-Indiana (4:10 p.m., TBS) and W. Kentucky-Kansas (9:50 p.m., TNT) are the two 16 vs. 1 matchups — the only chances that something really historic could happen today. Hope we at least see a few buzzer beaters today.
OTHER NEWS & NOTES
-Doughty has a story on the 1984 Virginia coaching staff, which included the likes of Jim Larranaga, Terry Holland and Seth Greenberg — a quintet that has 2,035 career wins.
-Colin Cowherd defending UVa? Believe it.
-Andy breaks down the Hokies’ linebacking corps as spring practice nears.
-Former tennis star Jennifer Capriati faces stalking and battery charges.
-Sorry, Ralph. The Dodgers’ fears are indeed realized as Hanley Ramirez will miss two months.
-Mark Prior, who hasn’t pitched since 2006, is attempting a comeback.
-Harlon Hill, the first MVP in NFL history, dies at age 80.
-The Nuggets — yes, Nuggets — win their 14th in a row.
READER COMMENTS O’ THE DAY
-Good stuff as always, gang. Got a little heated at times, but there was also some levity and some good perspective.
From Desert Hokie: I suspect that most of the views shared on this blog have the clarity of one’s view atop a galloping horse. My Iran reference was that while this blog is interesting, entertaining, and informative, it is about college sports; not about the very real and troubling issues of our time. A lot of folks shoot from the hip here, that’s the fun of it. If they are wrong, they’re wrong, but it doesn’t make them liars or stupid.
From crooked road: I’ll just go ahead and address this, because that’s what I do – Jay Leno needs to be fired, effective Saturday. Let him flame hot & hard tomorrow, then slice his throat. Metaphorically speaking, of course. Broadcast reruns for 60 days, then bring in Jimmy Fallon. JF can manage the turnaround. Just do it.
From Rick H: This [time of the sports calendar] is better than Christmas, because you don’t have to deal with family, and clean up a lot of wrapping paper for gifts that people will take and exchange.
From HokieAl: Here’s a follow-up to the gas tank question from yesterday. In all newer model cars, there is either a triangle or small arrow near your gas gauge. It points to the side of your car where the gas cap is.
NAME THAT TUNE
One for the Baby Boomer crowd today:
Hello there, female
My, my, but you do look swell
Could you please walk
A little slower
I wonder if you know
That you’re putting on a show
Could you please walk
A little closer…