Thursday, March 23, 2006

Pizza Parlor Madness: Bracket Redemption?

While 8 out of 16 Sweet 16 teams is a sub-standard performance. The office pool has hope in that all four of my Final Four teams are still alive. Unfortunately, there's a good chance so are everybody else's. The Sweet 16 begins tonight in Atlanta and Oakland with the Duke-LSU and Gonzaga-UCLA matchups being the main events.

Gonzaga holds in its hands my best chance to win money through the NCAA Tournament. For one, in my office pool, I have them going as far as the final game, which would be a surprise and is the only part of my brackets this point forward that isn't par for the course and my chance to gain ground on the rest of my office.

Also, I did a golf-ball draw with my old boss's friend a bar manager in Manchester. 64 golf balls are put into two buckets, one for each side of the bracket. If whatever team(s) you draw, win against the spread, you advance either with them or the team that wins. I drew Xavier and UW-Milwaukee. Xavier was a 6 point underdog to Gonzaga and lost by I believe 1 thanks to Adam Morrison's hulking up using the basketball, through that result I pick up Gonzaga. UW-Milwaukee easily beat Oklahoma whom they were a 2 point underdog to. I never saw the Second Round lines but UWM lost by 20 to Florida which would not have covered even the most misguided of spreads. Gonzaga ended Mike Davis' career as Indiana's coach by 10 in a game many picked them to lose, I doubt the line was more than 10.

Tonight Gonzaga is a 3 1/2 point underdog to UCLA. A final shot/minute game would get me the winner regardless, but I still feel Gonzaga is my best chance going forward. Here are my pool results (second round in parenthesis)

Atlanta: 5-7 (2-2)
Oakland: 10-2 (3-1)
Washington D.C.: 8-4 (2-2)
Minneapolis: 7-5 (1-3)

Lowest Seed Picked in Sweet 16: 7 Wichita State
Highest Seed Not Picked in Sweet 16: 3 Florida
Bracket Busters: Washington, Georgetown along with Bradley and George Mason, all First Round outs in my brackets, but we covered the last two in my last column. This has been a good tournament for schools with ties to the Constitutional Convention (Washington, George Mason, Georgetown) and Jesuit schools (Gonzaga, Boston College, Villanova).

My Great White Hope


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