The Sweet Sixteen is now set, and includes Louisville, Indiana and Kansas. In other news, Ben Howland is out as UCLA coach.
Tweet of the Morning:
Bet when Mark Stoops woke up this morning to snow for his 5th day of spring drills he knew he was closer to Youngstown than Tallahassee.— John Clay (@johnclayiv) March 25, 2013
I’m all for anything that will get the football team better.
Boyle says Johnson is similar to Kidd-Gilchrist in that both "like being part of a team and don’t look for individual attention" at any time.
I don’t think that’s been a problem here in the Calipari years, but it’s always good to have players that understand that there is no "I" in team.
If this is basketball brought to its cynical endpoint—a plug-and-play triumph of salesmanship—Kentucky fans don’t seem to mind. They celebrate Kentucky coach John Calipari, who has festooned his team with "friends of the program" including Jay-Z and LeBron James, whose donors contributed a $3.1 million "locker-room suite," who famously said the 2010 NBA Draft was the greatest day in Kentucky basketball history.
This is just typical Calipari hate, and sadly transparent, at that. "Triumph of salesmanship" spoken as if it were somehow dishonorable, and the irony of it being written in the Wall Street Journal is as thick as the impenetrable mass of bone that is the author’s skull.
If Pitino could recruit classes like Calipari, trust me, he would. He tried to at Kentucky, and succeeded fairly well. But because of his inability to do so at Louisville, we have to be called "cynical" while Pitino is lauded whenever the Cardinals have success.
We’ll see lots more like this if Louisville wins.
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The Cats didn’t give their best effort in the first round. Most notably, A’dia Mathies failed to score a field goal for the first time in her UK career, finishing with only five points.
Kentucky needs to play better than this if they hope to reach the Final Four. The score may look lopsided, but Kentucky’s play was inconsistent at best.
- Homers Power No. 21 Softball to Sweep of Mississippi State // UKAthletics.com
"We have a standard we want to uphold as Kentucky basketball players and she just hasn’t been doing that," Mitchell explained. "It’s not one particular thing, it’s just a series of things."
I hope she gets things straightened out.
- John Clay's Big Blue Links // John Clay's Sidelines
- The Morning Mix // CollegeBasketballTalk
- Tom Leach // Monday links
Many have examined his offseason to no end, causing Johnny Manziel fatigue for several, including myself. I’ve stayed away from Manziel and have been one of his biggest supporters, usually giving him the benefit of a doubt, knowing he’s just a young man on college football’s biggest stage.
Too much, too fast?
Imagine the thrill that will surround college football as the top six or eight teams in the country battle for the final four playoff spots. Now imagine that thrill increase exponentially if the playoff was eight or 16 teams? That’s what college football needs.
A dream, I fear, that can never be real. I think the logistics of this, and the differences between football and basketball, make a playoff of greater than eight teams very unlikely.
And the outrage begins in 3…2…1… Oh, wait, that’s right – that only happens when a Kentucky player leaves early.
Just a friendly reminder that gingers do, in fact, have souls.
This guy got more than his share, I suppose.
Have to give Oladipo credit, that was a great shot. IU should have lost that game, by all rights. But that’s how the tournament goes…
I must say that this was a great game, and a cold-blooded shot by a kid not known for clutch shooting.
Updated printable bracket after Sunday’s games.
I don’t think so. They are simply the most talented 15 seed we have seen in a long time, and they are getting what they earned.
Decision time now comes for a number of players who have to weigh whether they should return or go through to the uncertainty of the NBA draft. Creighton’s Doug McDermott, Gonzaga’s Kelly Olynyk and Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart are three of the more intriguing players.
I’d say Smart and McDermott are gone. Olynyk will return.
That’s a tough argument to make, especially against a program as good as Florida, but the bottom line is that Minnesota didn’t role over despite seemingly doing so for what felt like the last two months of the regular season.
The question now becomes whether or not that will be enough to save Tubby Smith’s job.
I suspect Smith will retire after this year. Don’t have any intel on it, just a feeling.
Yet another "one and done" lament. We’ll be seeing a ton of these, also.
This may be the most notable blown charge call in this year’s tournament, but it certainly isn’t the first. It’s an epidemic, really. Referees, who are now forced to focus on when a defender has their feet and whether or not they are outside the charge circle, are missing more and more calls under the basket. The Flagrant 1 elbow rule needs to be the first thing addressed by the rules committee this offseason, as that’s easily the worst rule in college basketball. But the referees need to get together and figure out how to start calling charges and blocks correctly.
Yeah. All that.
Howland had a 233-107 record in Westwood, including three consecutive Final Four appearances from 2006-08 and four Pac-12 championships, including this season. The Bruins’ season ended last Friday with an 83-63 loss to Minnesota in the NCAA tournament.
Down seasons at great programs get you fired. John Calipari knows this, and by the looks of things, has taken that to heart.
If you can’t defend the Gators, they will really put some points up on you.
Florida, Louisville, and Indiana lead the way with Ohio St. a distant fourth.
What interests me is how far ahead Louisville and Florida are.
If it wasn’t already clear Oregon was seeded four to five lines too low on Selection Sunday, the 12th-seeded Ducks left no doubt this week.
This is a team that isn’t getting enough buzz.
The decision will cost UCLA $3.5 million to buy Howland out of the final five years of his deal.
The Bruins will now, according to sources, target high-profile coaches such as Butler’s Brad Stevens and VCU’s Shaka Smart.
Don’t be surprised if one of them takes the job.
Lorenzo Romar? Buzz Williams? Seriously? Romar’s a good coach and recruiter, no doubt, but UCLA wants a name, and a big one. Williams would fit in Westwood about as well as Billy Gillispie did in Lexington.
Look, if Shaka Smart and Brad Stevens get offered the job, they should take it. There is no "up" from UCLA.
Donovan, I think, has cast his lot with Florida, but UCLA should give him a call. Jay Wright is an intriguing choice. He would fit right in at UCLA, and his Northeast recruiting ties could be more a bonus than a negative.
Mike Brown isn’t likely either. Just doesn’t have the temperament for the college job.
- What the last 10 NCAA champs have in common // Kyle Tucker – UK Beat
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For Davis to be fully considered as a possible winner, he’d have to win the rookie of the month designation for March, so a big week this week against playoff teams such as the Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers and Miami Heat could be huge.
It would be tough to overcome Lillard at this point, but you never know.
Kevin missed his calling. That tackle was worthy of Troy Polamalu.