Archive for March 30th, 2009


Wow — what a weekend in college basketball, as the Elite 8 transformed into the illustrious… FINAL FOUR.

First up, it was #1 seed UCONN v. #3 Missouri.  Missouri was a bit of a surprise pick, as almost everyone was anticipating the battle between Memphis (the team that felt slighted, and felt they deserved a #1 seed) and UCONN (a team that barely got a #1 seed).  But, Missouri crushed Memphis, and snuck into the Elite 8.  The game started off all UCONN, but Missouri battled back, with Leo Lyons and Matt Lawrence doing most of the legwork, and it was only a 6-point UCONN lead at the half. Unfortunately for the Tigers, UCONN was just too big down low.  Missouri stopped their really big guy, Hasheem Thabeet, but the Tigers couldn’t contain their other big men Jeff Adrian and Stanley Robinson.  And UCONN held on to win, earning their first trip back to the Final Four since 2004.  UCONN 82, Missouri 75.

Next, it was a game that will stand the test of time between #1 Pitt and #3 Villanova.  Like the previous game, this was a back and forth match from the get go, with neither team losing focus.  Then, the memorable moments came at the very end.  Pitt tied the game at 76 with some clutch free throws with 5.5 seconds left.  Then, Villanova in bounded the ball to Dante Cunningham.  In mid-air, Cunningham dished it to Scottie Reynolds, who drove the length of the court.  Then, with just one second left, and a defender’s hand on the ball, Reynolds put up a shot inside the key, and…. GOOD!!!  Villanova is headed to the Final Four!  Villanova is headed to the Final Four!  It was a truly amazing moment — one that will be remembered for the ages.  Villanova 78, Pitt 76.

On Sunday, the day kicked off with the #1 Louisville Cardinals taking on #2 Michigan State.  Louisville was ranked #1 in the nation coming into this game, and also full of confidence after destroying Arizona on Friday night.  But Michigan State had its eye on playing the Final Four in a home city — Detroit.  Talk about home court advantage.  Well, the Spartans channeled that energy, and gave Louisville everything they had.  The star of the game was their center, Goran Suton.  He had 19 points and 10 rebounds, and Michigan State will drive on into Detroit next weekend to play host to UCONN.  Oddly, they might now be the favorite to win this tournament.  Michigan State 64, Louisville 52.

Finally, with one spot remaining in the Final Four, it was #1 North Carolina taking on #2 Oklahoma.  This was also a match-up of two of the best college basketball players in the country:  UNC’s Tyler Hansborough and Oklahoma’s Blake Griffin.  Well, UNC’s coach Roy Williams plan to win this game was simple… take Blake Griffin out of it.  Make the rest of the Sooners beat you.  Blake Griffin still did his thing, putting up 23 points, and nabbing 16 rebounds, but the Tar Heels were just too much for the Sooners the entire game.  Hansborough didn’t have the best game, but Ty Lawson was on fire.  He had 19 on the night, and their other guard, Danny Green, put up 18.  UNC now advances to take on the red-hot underdog, Villanova, in the Final Four.  UNC 72, Oklahoma 60.

Next weekend is going to be absolutely fantastic.

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