I watched the Big 12 Tournament final yesterday and all I can say is ho-lee-crap. If the rest of the boys in burnt orange can give Kevin Durant just a little bit of help, they will roll into the Final Four. What Durant needs is a Hakim Warrick to his Carmelo Anthony. And a Gerry McNamara would probably seal the championship deal. The only way Kansas was able to win that game was to throw multiple very good defensive players at Durant, and even so most of the Jayhawks ended up in foul trouble trying to keep him from scoring. Anyone who picks Oden over Durant is a chump – you heard it from the mouth (keyboard?) of a Kansas fan.
The regions are screwy. Back in my day, #1 seeds were supposed to play in the region closest to home. But here we have Florida in St. Louis, Ohio State in San Antonio, North Carolina in East Rutherford, and Kansas in… fucking San Jose? Are the selection committee heavily invested in airline companies or something? Fans are going to really have to trek to follow their teams this year.
Potential second round matchups that trouble me:
Vanderbilt/Oral Roberts – If Kevin Stallings refuses to hand the basketball to an ORU player, should he look out for lightning from above? Or does Oral’s “loan shark” version of the lord only get mad if you don’t pay him on time?
Tennessee/Virginia – That much orange in the stands could blow out my HDTV.
Illinois/Southern Illinois – A state divided against itself cannot stand.
I’m personally pleased that my three favorite teams all made it in the same year. I am first and foremost a Kansas fan, having grown up in Lawrence and stayed home for school. But since I’ve moved to Virginia, I’ve found admiration for ODU and Virginia as well. ODU has been good ever since Blaine Taylor took over, and I take some tech writing classes from their distance learning division, so that’s like a secondary alma mater, I guess. I live in Charlottesville, so I get to go to UVA games, but my interest in them didn’t really spark until the hiring of Dave Leitao and the addition of the most excellent John Paul Jones arena.
Yep, that’s called hedging your bets, partners. And I do it every year.