This is a blog dedicated to all the teams in the tounrament proving that Billy Packer is a blow hard, know nothing, ass. For those of us who happened to take the time to catch a few games from the Mid-Majors (including the MVC), we know how good these schools are. So spread the word.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

So Long, Farewell...

It was a heck of a Tournament for some of the smaller schools. George Mason's historic run, the MVC sticking two teams in the Sweet 16 (Wichita State and Bradley) and a couple of first round wins by Northwestern State and Montana.

It was fun to watch these schools stick it to Billy Packer. Maybe now, he will get the college basketball package offered by ESPN so he can watch some MVC games (and some of the other conferences as well).

Maybe we'll get lucky and CBS will realize soemthing that many people have know for quite some time, that he isn't really very good, and we can get a new head color analyst. I like Jay Bilas, but I'd be open to other people as well. Anyone else have a suggestion?

So I would like to say thank you to the people who stopped by and especially to those who made a comment or sent an email. Until next year when that first jump ball goes up, I bid you a fond farewell.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

George Mason-Florida, Let's Get It On!

So much has been said about this George Mason teams run to the Final Four. But now it is time for the talking to stop and the playing to commence. I think an article from the Official George Mason website says it best in it's lead, when it states:

"Is there anything left to be said about the George Mason men's basketball team? In the past three weeks, more than 1,000 stories have appeared in more than 100 newspapers around the world. More than 10,000 questions have been asked of the 14 players, three assistant coach and one head coach. On Saturday night, the only question that truly matters will finally be answered."

I think that sums up things pretty well. George Mason game notes.

One very interesting thing in tonight's game, all 10 projected starters average scoring in double figures. That's not all that common. Florida Game notes.

It will be interesting to see how the Patriots deal with the Gator's size inside. Florida starts 6-11 Joakim Noah, 6-9 Al Horford, and 6-8 Corey Brewer. Then again, they handle UConn's size pretty well.

I'm ready for tip-off. How about you?

Friday, March 31, 2006

Fun With Photo Shop

Great photoshop picture I just ran across. I didn't do it. I don't have the skills. Wish I did though. Enjoy.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

CAA and MVC Make Post Season Mark

Everyone is giving all the attention to George Mason (and deservedly so). But the CAA and MVC Conferences need some attention as well. They have both had excellent post seasons, not only in the Field of 65, but in the NIT as well.

Post Season Record: 9-3 (1 win and 1 loss came from a head to head match up of Old Dominion and Hofstra in the NIT)
Records versus Conferences and who they beat/lost to:
A-10: 1-1 Beat St. Joe's, lost to George Washington
ACC: 1-0 Beat North Carolina
Big 10: 1-1 Beat Michigan State, lost to Michigan
Big 12: 2-0 Beat Colorado and Nebraska
Big East: 1-0 Beat Connecticut
MAAC: 1-0 Beat Manhattan
MVC: 1-0 Beat Wichita State

Post Season Record: 7-6
Records versus conferences and who they beat/lost to:
ACC: 0-1 Lost to Miami (FL)
Big 12: 1-0 Beat Kansas
Big East: 2-3 Beat Seton Hall and Pittsburgh. Lost to Louisville, West Virginia and Georgetown
CAA: 0-1 Lost to George Mason
C-USA: 1-1 Beat Houston, lost to Memphis
MAC: 1-0 Beat Akron
Pac 10: 1-0 Beat Stanford
SEC: 1-0 Beat Tennessee

And lets not forget a couple of other small school wins agaisnt bigger opponents, such as:
Northwestern State over Iowa
Manhattan winning at Maryland

This is only the beginning. Let this be a wake-up call to those who weren't ready.

Greatest Final Four Run Ever?

Andy Katz claims that the Patriots run to the Final Four is the greatest ever. It has a tru Cinderella feel that we haven't seen in 26 years (Penn in '79). They had a low seed (11), they're from a school more known for academics (two Nobel Prizes) than athletics, and out of a conference (The CAA) that before this year most sports fans not from the East coast (and probably a lot of East Coasters as well) would have trouble naming two schools from.

So is this the greatest run to the Final Four? Would anyone like to take a stab at a better one? I would love to hear any suggestions.

NCAA Tourney All Mid-Major Team

Here is a list of my all Mid-Major Team from the NCAA Tourney. There was one stipulation. Your team had to play at least 2 Tournament games. Also, it was a hard list to put together. There were a lot of deserving players. So I would like some input from you on who I left out that should be on the team. Thanks. Enjoy and pass it on.

Two things really jumped out at me when compiling this list. First, I was surprised at how many underclassmen there were contributing so much. Everyone always talks about how the Mid-major rosters are full of Seniors who stay for four years and that is why they are good. There may be a lot of Seniors, but it's the Sophmores and Juniors who seem to be making the biggest splash. Second, there are a lot of 6-6 to 6-9 Forwards who really brought it. There is an abundance of good swing players amongst these schools.

First Team
G - Luke Rogers, 6-1 Jr Northwestern State
Key stats - 7.5 pts, 7 assts, 3.5 rebs, 1.5 stls
Note - All teams need a guy who can distribute
G - Folarin Campbell, 6-4 So George Mason
Key stats - 16.8 points, 5 rebs, 3.25 assts
Note - Leads upstart Patriots in scoring and assists
F - Adam Morrison, 6-8 Jr Gonzaga
Key stats - 24.3 pts, 5.3 rebs, 2 assts
Note - Led Bulldogs in scoring and had 9 in the last 3:30 of the Xavier game
F - Omar Williams, 6-9 Sr George Washington
Key Stats - 15 points, 12 rebs, 1.5 assts
Note - Consistently good in both games against Wilmington and Duke
C - Patrick O'Bryant, 7-0 So Bradley
Key Stats - 14.7 pts, 10.3 rebs
Note - Led the Braves in rebounding and looked smooth for a 7 footer

Second Team
G - Daniel Ruffin, 5-10 So Bradley
Key Stats - 7.3 pts, 5 assts, 1.7 stls
Note - Did an excellent job spreading the ball around
G - Lamar Butler, 6-2 Sr George Mason
Key Stats - 16 pts, 3.2 rebs, 1.2 assts
Note - Consistent scoring, sharp shooting assasin has hit 11-22 (50%) from 3
F - Will Thomas, 6-7 So George Mason
Key Stats - 13.8 pts, 10.5 rebs
Note - Averaging a double-double through 4 Tourney games is no small task
F - Marcellus Sommerville, 6-7 Sr Bradley
Key Stats - 19 pts, 7 rebs
Note - Led team in scoring and had nice touch from the outside (7-15 on 3s)
C - J.P. Batista, 6-9 Sr Gonzaga
Key Stats - 18.7 pts, 8.7 rebs, 1.3 stls
Note - Extremely consistent, scoring 20, 18 and 18 in 3 games

Honorable Mention
Paul Miller, 6-10 Sr C Wichita State - 13.7 pts, 8 rebs
Note - Led Shockers in scoring and rebounding
Mike Hall, 6-8 Sr F George Washington - 13 pts, 8 rebs, 2.5 assts
Note - Nice all around game for Colonials
Kyle Wilson, 6-8 Jr F Wichita State - 12.7 pts, 7 rebs
Note - Numbers parallel teammate Miller's
Andrew Strait, 6-8 So F Montana - 16.5 pts, 3 rebs, 4 assts
Note - Had big assist day with 7 against Nevada
Sean Ogirri, 6-2 So Wichita State - 13 pts, 3.3 assts, 3.3 rebs
Note - Did a bit of everything for Sweet 16 Shockers

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Patriot Act is Gaining Support

George Mason 86
Connecticut 84 (OT)

Did you see that game? Seriously. Few are ever any better. I admit I was extremely concerned when the Huskies forced over-time, but George Mason played the way they had played all game to gut out an 86-84 OT win.

It just goes to show what desire, determination, hot shooting, and a partisan crowd can do for a club. And the fact that they outrebounded UConn is a testiment to the effort that they put in.

No mid-major has made the final four since 1979. Indiana State (led by Larry Bird) and Penn both made it. But Indiana State was a number 1 seed. The llth seeded Patriots tied the all-time record for lowest seed to reach the Final Four. LSU had held the spot previously.

By the way. Just an observation, but it seems to me that throughout the Tournament Jim Nantz has been owning up to his comments and even poking fun at himself. That I like. Billy Packer talking nice about George Mason and the CAA seems completely insincere.

But anyway... What great effort. Their win was well deserved. Now they face a suddenly surging Florida team led by one of the most athleic big men that we have seen this year in the form of Joakim Noah. But that will come later. For now, the Patriots, and the CAA, get to enjoy the spotlight for another week.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Then There Was One

LSU (SEC) and UCLA (PAC-10) have already punched their tickets to Indy. The Minneapolis bracket features Villanova (Big East) vs. Florida (SEC). The only school not from a power conference left dancing is George Mason. The Patriots advanced to the Elite 8 with a 63-55 win over Wichita State.

Now George Mason faces a taller task, literally, as it gets set to take on the UConn Huskies. UConn got here by surviving an Over-Time thriller against Washington.

With a formidable inside game, the Huskies will be tough to handle. Hopefully the hot shooting can continue and George Mason can ride the wave of home court advantage and a strong crowd supporting it, through at least one more game. Here's one for the dreamers and the believers. Do they have a shot against the Huskies?

"Anything," George Mason coach Jim Larranaga said, "is possible."

Go Patriots. You have the backing of everyone who has ever gone against the odds. And the backing of those who just want to see someone shove it up Billy Packer's ass one last time.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Braves Go Down to Tigers (Thanks for the Ride)

The Bradley Braves surprise run to the Sweet 16 ended with an 80-64 loss to the Memphis Tigers. The Braves kept it close through the first half, trailing by 5, 35-30, at the half.

Ultimately, it came down to shooting as the Tigers made 31 of 60 shot attempts (51.7%) to the Braves 20-60 (33.3%). Memphis had 3 players in double figures, being led by game high scorerRodney Carney's 23.

Bradley knocked off two schools from the so-called power conferences (Big 12's Kansas in the first round, Big East's Pittsburgh in the second round) before falling to Memphis out of Conference USA. Which, by the way, is not a Power conference. Why does no one ever mention Memphis, UAB or Gonzaga when talking about Mid-majors? Just because you have developed a winning program does not mean that you are no longer a mid-major.

Memphis now advances to take on UCLA. But for the Braves, it was a hell of a ride. From me, for everyone out there, thanks for the ride. And thanks for sticking it up Billy Packer's ass. It's been fun. We'll be watching next year.