Thursday, March 14th, 2002
by Andrew Flynn
Just Let the Basketball Flow Over You
Today the real madness starts. When it ends, there will have been 16 basketball games played in the NCAA Tournament, plus five NIT games. And let us not forget that there are six Women’s games today as well.
NCAA Matchups include two East Region Matchups (Kentucky/Valpo and Marquette/Tulsa), six South Region Matchups (featuring Oklahoma State, Notre Dame, Duke, Indiana, USC, and Alabama), and the full slate of Midwest games.
Kent State/Oklahoma State get light the candle at 12:20 PM EST, and Utah/Indiana wrap things up 12 hours later as the last game of the day.
Over in the bridesmaid bracket, the NIT features Bowling Green against Butler, Manhattan down at Villanova, the Irvine Anteaters at BYU, Yale at Rutgers, and UNC Greensboro at Memphis.
Told you so: ESPN announced that the Play-In game was seen in 70% more TV households than last year, drawing a 1.1 cable rating (980,000 households), compared with 580,000 households last year.
Two are staying: Both Missouri junior Kareem Rush and Boston College junior Troy Bell announced that they will probably be staying in school for their senior seasons. Probably means different things. Bell, who had a disappointing season, fears his stock has fallen too much after limping through the tough Big East Conference schedule. Plus, his BC Eagles have a tough first-round matchup against Texas, and are unlikely to last long enough in the tournament for Bell to showcase his considerable talent.
Rush is going about things a little differently. He’ll not sign with an agent, but will participate in NBA workouts. Then, if he’s not projected as a lottery pick, he’ll return to Columbia for his senior year.
Good to see that getting their degree is so important to these two.
NIT Results: Last night, in a matchup of two Hall-of-Fame coaches, John Chaney’s Temple Owls downed Tark the Shark’s Fresno State Bulldogs, 81-75, in what many think will have been the final Shark sighting.
Also, Richmond downed Wagner, Dayton beat Detroit, Vandy topped Houston, Louisiana Tech stomped cross-state rival Louisiana-Lafayette, and Tennessee Tech edged Georgia State.
LSU edged Iowa, Minnesota lit up New Mexico by 34, Syracuse finally won a game, this time against St. Bonaventure, and South Carolina defeated Virginia.
As mentioned above, there are plenty of games today. For complete the complete NCAA schedule, check out the Hoopville Tournament Challenge site.