Next to NFL Football, there’s nothing I love more than College Basketball, especially this time of year.  It’s March Madness!  64 (okay, actually 68) teams take part in a win-or-go-home six (okay, actually seven)-round tournament to crown the nation’s best.  And it never fails to impress with unbelievable upsets, fantastic finishes, and the occasional Cinderella confounding the experts.  How much do I love college ball?  About as much as I hate the NBA.  And how much do I hate the NBA?  Well, given the choice, I’d rather watch baseball.  In other words, A LOT!

Anyway, our good buddy Ivon forwarded me this year’s bracket and reminded me to fill them out before Wednesday night.   Wednesday night?  I’m already done!


So, what do you think?   Crazy?  A little? The Billikens upending the fashionable-favorite Cardinals?  The Aztecs taking down the mighty Hoyas?  And the New Mexico Lobos knocking out the Buckeyes, the Gonzaga Bulldogs, AND the JAYHAWKS to win it all?!

Yep.  Maybe.  But I’m expecting big surprises in this year’s tourney. Hell, it hasn’t even started and, already, surprises abound with the Kentucky Wildcats on the outside looking in – along with the state of Texas.

For what it’s worth, picks aside, I’ll be rooting for: Missouri, Memphis, Gonzaga, Mississippi, New Mexico, Iowa State, VCU, San Diego State, UNLV, Butler, and Marquette.

And rooting against: Louisville, Duke, Ohio State, Kansas, North Carolina, Georgetown, Indiana.

Go fill out your own bracket:

Meanwhile, is doing its own bracket challenge (Here’s our bracket), pitting 64 of the greatest plays in NFL history against each other.  Well, THEIR picks for the greatest plays in NFL history.  Given the ones that did make the least, a few memorable plays are conspicuously absent.  Like this one –

Ray Rice catches the ball and runs for the first down – on a 4th and 29! This play is all the more memorable when one considers it helped them win a game that ultimately  allowed them to tie the Bengals for the division lead, and take it on the tie-breaker.  If not for that run, the Ravens would have had to go through Houston and then New England before traveling to Denver for the conference championship where they would have faced a decidedly different Broncos team.

And, speaking of the Broncos, here is one of my favorite plays of all time because it demonstrates how quickly fortunes can change.  With the game tied at 24-24, the San Diego Chargers line up for a 40 yard field goal to win the game in overtime.  Denver’s Dennis Smith’s leaps up and blocks the kick – BUT his amazing defensive play is nullified because the Broncos called a timeout prior to the snap.  So San Diego lines up to kick it again – and again Dennis Smith blocks the kick – BUT this time, it is scooped up by a fellow Bronco and run back for the game-winning touchdown.

22 thoughts on “March 19, 2013: Sports Talk!

  1. What I hate is when my school actually finally makes it into the tournament and it ends up being one of the games that all of the “experts” on tv pick to be an upset game for the other team.

    ie- my school is Illinois

    Not sure why all of the guys I’ve seen on tv seem to pick CO to beat them hands down ..Illinois is the only team in the tourney to beat 2 of the #1 seeds this season (Indiana & Gonzaga), that’s gotta count for something.

  2. Good Time, ya good times… You go sports fan, enjoy. Most of the people I have been around are just waiting for spring.

  3. I watched both those NFL moments…with the Ray Rice’s run, David and I were jumping up and down…it was incredible! But then we got worried when the refs took so long with the chains. You’re right, this play was pivotal for the Ravens in the championships. In second-place for me was the Jacoby Jones 108-yard kickoff return during the Superbowl.

    On March Madness, David is going with Miami (Florida) and I’m abstaining (Basketball is not really my game). Baseball is my second sports love.

  4. @Deni:

    Anybody here going to the Stargate convention in Chicago? Just got my tickets!

    The family and I are going. We’ll be staying the weekend at the Westin (arriving on Friday). Should be fun! Leave a message on my blog if you’d like to meet up with us (I can keep the comment private if you don’t want your email address posted).

  5. I always enter the office tournament, but have no idea what I’m doing. This year I created one bracket based on Nate Silver’s predictions (he predicted US Pres 2012 election perfectly) and one based on a wild hope of UNLV winning, because my sister & family live there and route for them. Your picks are bold, no question about it. Maybe I’ll make a JM entry, but entries are a stiff $10 each. 🙂

  6. I just don’t understand why the NFL is so popular, not when you could be watching rugby. Here’s a few highlights from last year’s Super Rugby competition (club teams from NZ, Aus, & SA) – all you need to know to understand what’s going on is that the ball cannot be passed forward but it can be kicked forward, and the ball must actually be grounded for a try (score) to be made, thus several of the try scorers dive across the line to ensure the ball makes contact with the ground.

    The second video shows penalty and conversion kicks, which are more impressive than anything you’ll see in the NFL. It’s a longer video, but at least watch until the 4:30 mark, and especially the one that starts about the 5:50 mark – it is AMAZING! (Keep in mind some of these kicks are 50-60 m out, or 55-65 yards, as well as being on an angle.)


    So, Joey…have I converted you yet? 😉 (For some reason, I suspect you may actually prefer women’s rugby… )


  7. At first I was going to say you and my roommate would get along well given your mutual love for college and hate for the NBA, but she’s the biggest IU fan EVER (no, seriously), so there goes that.

    I, on the other hand, don’t even care that my school (Missouri) is in the tournament because I don’t care about basketball at all. I do, however, care a lot about baseball season coming up! 😉

    That said, good luck with your bracket!

  8. My neighbor is a huge college basketball fan. I don’t like basketball, college or NBA. I find it very boring unless it’s the Harlem Globetrotters, or Donkey Ball.

    I’ve been to three live pro sports matches – hockey, baseball, and basketball, and I fell asleep at the basketball game. Hockey, of course, was the most exciting, but baseball is surprisingly enjoyable to watch live. It’s like going on a picnic where there just happens to be a baseball game. 🙂


  9. Bahahahahaha, I thought of you the other week when someone described fantasy football as dungeons and dragons for sports people.

    But I’m glad it makes you happy and keeps you off the streets.

  10. Meh,,not really a fan of basketball, but I hope you win Joe. Is there a food prize involved,? that might get me interested, well maybe not. Have fun.

  11. I know Memphians are celebrating because it’s dominating the local news. Which Mississippi college is it? Probably Ole Miss. And that reminds me of picking colleges for my kid.

    We’ve only looked at one so far (Mississippi State) but son is going next month to tour University of Memphis and Rhodes. I would like him to apply to Georgia Tech but I don’t think we can swing the money. He was apprehensive about leaving home at first but MSU’s computer science department sparked his interest. Wish us luck!

    How is Bubba doing? Has he shown any other symptoms? Good luck on the job front Akemi! Have a great day everyone!

  12. I don’t follow sports so closely. I have a ton of Facebook friends in Louisville and the rest of Kentucky, though. Apparently, they’re too distracted by the looming war with a country called Calipari to be bothered with basketball.

  13. DP: Calipari is a dirty word over in Memphis. Most Memphians look forward to any “war” that rolls over him. I don’t follow sports much but the way Calipari RAN from Memphis was pretty skanky. Pastner seems like a great guy though.

  14. Would also take baseball any day over the nba and filled out my bracket yesterday. Far different then yous on display. But I just winged it for the most part at my cart.

  15. My heart can’t take the excitement; after a few heartbreaking misses I had to stop watching my school play. I just love when the underdogs advance.

  16. @ Debra – 😆 I’d say that’s fairly accurate. It’s funny how sports nerds don’t realize they’re nerds. Joey’s in a bad way, though…not only is he a sports nerd, but a sci fi/fantasy nerd, too. And a food nerd. That’s three strikes already. And now that Akemi is in his life I’m afeared her illimitable cuteness will overcome him and next thing we’ll know Joey’ll be coming out of the closet as a full-on Brony. 😉


  17. I still don’t understand these things. It’s like geometry to me. It makes me want to bang my head against the wall.

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