Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Conference Tournament Time

The University of Kentucky is the lead story in almost all the talk concerning the upcoming conference and NCAA tournaments. And why shouldn't they be? Many detractors will come up with many reasons why they are undeserving of all the attention, but here are the indisputable facts: they went 29-2 in the regular season; they were 18-0 at home; they have 3 of the best and most decorated players in the country; they are #2 in the nation; they will be a #1 seed in the NCAA; they already are a #1 seed in the SEC tourney; they won the SEC regular season; and their current RPI is #3, only behind Kansas and Duke . How can one argue against that?

This article breaks down the conference tournaments, naming the favorites for victory and what teams to watch out for. The most interesting conference tournament this year will be the Big East. The SEC (UK), Big 12 (Kansas), ACC (Duke), Big 12 (Michigan State), Pac 10 (who cares?), all have their favorites. That doesn't mean these teams will win it. Look for Ohio State to make Michigan State sweat or even win the Big 10. Maryland SHOULD be the only competition that Duke sees and Kansas could get an interesting game from Kansas State. UK is a heavy favorite, but they need to beware of Tennessee and Vandy, especially since they are in the state of Tennessee for the tournament. The Big Blue Nation will turn Nashville into Lexington South, but there aren't many tougher games than playing Vandy in that cursed gym.

Back to the Big East! Any team, with the exceptions of Rutgers or DePaul can win it. Of course Syracuse is the favorite but that doesn't mean anything in the Big East. Uconn, Notre Dame, Marquette, Louisville, Pitt, Villanova, Georgetown, South Florida, Seton Hall or West Virginia are all capable of winning the thing. All of these teams have at least one guy that is capable of putting up big numbers in any given game.

Who can forget the 2005 Syracuse team? They were a #9 seed in the Big East tournament and looking at missing the NCAA's. They beat Cincinnati, UConn, Georgetown and Pittsburgh to win the tournament only to be defeated by Billy G's Texas A&M Aggies. One of the major reasons for their epic run was the outstanding play from then senior guard Gerry McNamara. All it takes is one guy to create some momentum and confidence in his teammates.

This is going to be fun.

1 comment:

  1. By that cursed gym do you mean the Gaylord center? Because that is where the tournamnet is being played. Not at Vanyd