Posts Tagged ‘NCAA’

This just in: the Oklahoma Sooners have put out a hit on Morgan State freshman Ameer Ali.

Let me preface this by saying that when the following event took place, Oklahoma was up around 20-30 points, meaning that the game was signed, sealed, and delivered to Oklahoma’s doorstep.

In the second half of Thursday’s NCAA Tournament game between Oklahoma and Morgan State, Ali and Griffin were fighting for a rebound when the matter got out of hand.

Ali and Griffin went up for a rebound, came down with their arms interlocked, and then both tried to pull themselves free of eachother. Ali apparently felt like he was being harassed by Griffin, because he grabbed Griffin’s arm and dragged the National Player of the Year (by the shoulder) over his body. Griffin did a complete flip before landing on the ground (nearly landing on the back of his neck) and Ameer Ali was ejected immediately.

When I first saw this incident here is what I thought:

  1. Horace Grant's Illegitimate Son Plays for Morgan State

    Horace Grant's Illegitimate Son Plays for Morgan State

    What was Blake Griffin still doing in the game?

  2. Who let Horace Grant play for Morgan State?
  3. Thank god he did not land on his neck.
  4. Oh ****! My bracket!
  5. How can Ameer Ali be stupid enough to literally body slam an opponent directly in front of a referee?
  6. Is Ali crazy? If he hurts Blake Griffin in any way Sooner fans nation-wide will hunt him down and kill him. Why? Because everyone knows that if Blake Griffin goes down, so do the Sooners title hopes.

It’s a shame when a team is getting blown out and doesn’t know how to handle it. No one likes to lose, but with this act Ameer Ali brought losing to a new low. Greg Gumbel called it “easily the bush league play of the tournament so far,” and had Griffin been hurt Ali would have faced some serious repercussions.

It is said that in order to be a great player one must know how to win, but also how to lose. Ameer Ali missed the memo on this life lesson.

Any athlete knows there are times when you just want to beat the hell out of your opponent. Unfortunately, you can’t do it with your fists. If you want to prove a point, do it on the court. If you can’t do it on the court (as Ali couldn’t) then just buck it up, go home, and wait for your next chance.


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The Cleveland State Vikings upset No.16 Butler tonight to earn an automatic bid in the NCAA Tournament. Yes, those Cleveland State Vikings.

Sure, Cleveland State finished the season with with 25 wins, including an upset of (then) No.13 Syracuse, but their tournament chances were done if it weren’t for Tuesday’s Horizon League Championship Game victory.

Everyone Is Looking for This Year's George Mason

Everyone Is Looking for This Year's George Mason

The fans loved Cleveland State’s title game victory. A mid-major team with minimal Tournament hopes earned an NCAA Tournament bid, a Conference Championship upset made the ESPN highlight reel, and another potential Cinderella team joined the NCAA Tournament pool. However, Cleveland State’s victory had one commonly overlooked consequence: another team’s NCAA Tournament bubble has popped.

Rivals’ most recent 65-Team Prediction has the following four teams as the last four out: San Diego State, St. Mary’s, Florida, and Creighton. All four teams have a better resume and more potential for tournament success than Cleveland State, but any of the four could end up watching the NCAA Tournament on television. Even worse, they could end up in the NIT…

The bottom line is that automatic bids rob the NCAA Tournament of hosting the most talented teams and the fiercest competition.

Here are the two main arguments in support of automatic NCAA bids and why each one is flawed.

1) If conference tournament champions weren’t given automatic NCAA Tournament bids, small-conference teams would have nothing to play for -This might be true, but it comes with playing in a less prestigious conference.  Gonzaga (WCC), Butler (Horizon), Xavier (Atlantic 10), and BYU (MWC) are all small-conference teams who cracked last week’s top 25. If no automatic bids were given, these four teams would undoubtedly go dancing. Even if automatic tourney bids were taken away there are ways for small-conference teams to garner national attention (and consequently earn respect from the NCAA Selection Committee). In order to earn national attention, small-conference teams have to play power-conference teams in their non-conference schedule, beat at least some of these power-conference teams, and win all the games they’re supposed to. Taking away automatic bids to the NCAA Tournament would make it difficult for small-conference teams to make the tournament, but not impossible.

Davidson Played Cinderella Despite Being Well-Known

Davidson Played Cinderella Despite Being Well-Known

2) If conference tournament champions weren’t given automatic NCAA Tournament bids, the Tournament might not have any more “Cinderella” teams – Not true. In 1998, the Gonzaga Bulldogs lost the WCC conference championship game, and subsequently settled for an NIT Tournament appearance. In 1999, Gonzaga scheduled a number of high-profile teams (e.g. No.8 Kansas, No.15 Purdue, No.22 Washington), beat at least one of those teams (No.22 Washington), and built upon their previous season to earn national attention. They received a No.10 Seed in the NCAA Tournament, which showed that they were not considered a typical small-conference champion, and had they not won the WCC conference tournament it was assumed that an at-large bid was on its way. A team doesn’t have to be a nobody to be a “Cinderella,” all you have to be is an underdog. Davidson went to the NCAA Tournament in 2006 and 2007, but in 2008 (their third straight appearance) they turned into a “Cinderella” team. The bottom line is that if a potential “Cinderella” team gains national attention through consistent success, they will earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament through their own merit (not through a hot streak of games which robs another deserving team of an NCAA Tourney appearance). From there, it’s up to small-conference teams to play their way to glory.

The bottom line is that automatic bids to NCAA Tournament give undeserving teams a chance at a National Championship while robbing teams who could otherwise compete. Chattanooga (Southern Conference) and Cleveland State (Horizon League) are two teams who have stolen NCAA bids away from more deserving teams so far this year.

Automatic bids provide underdog stories that fans enjoy, but make a tournament comprised of the most talented teams in the country an impossibility; and that is something that the NCAA needs to fix.


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Uncle Sam Says "Fourth Place is for Canada!"

Uncle Sam Says "4th Place is for Canada!"

Not everyone likes the BCS. In fact, nearly everyone hates the BCS. While the BCS is a better system then its predecessor, it leaves much desired in terms of deciding the best team in college football. I have been involved in many discussions aimed at solving the BCS dilemma, and there are a variety of solutions that all seem feasible. Change seems inprobable though, as a plethora of inter-conference agreements and business contracts stand in the way of any alteration to the current system.

That argument is for another day. This article is to discuss ways in which the BCS is advancing. While I was shocked to read the following article, it intrigued me to see that the BCS is expanding its area of influence.

The author of this article was not attached to the site I found it on, but whoever it is gained my respect.

After determining the Big-12 championship game participants, the BCS computers were put to work on other major contests and today the BCS declared Germany to be the winner of World War II.

“Germany put together an incredible number of victories beginning with the annexation of Austria and the Sudetenland and continuing on into conference play with defeats of Poland, France, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium and the Netherlands. Their only losses came against the US and Russia; however considering their entire body of work–including an incredibly tough Strength of Schedule–our computers deemed them worthy of the #1 ranking.”

Questioned about the #4 ranking of the United States the BCS commissioner stated “The US only had two major victories–Japan and Germany. The computer models, unlike humans, aren’t influenced by head-to-head contests–they consider each contest to be only a single, equally-weighted event.”

German Chancellor Adolf Hitler said “Yes, we lost to the US; but we defeated #2 ranked France in only 6 weeks.” Herr Hitler has been criticized for seeking dramatic victories to earn ‘style points’ to enhance Germany’s rankings. Hitler protested “Our contest with Poland was in doubt until the final day and the conditions in Norway were incredibly challenging and demanded the application of additional forces.”

The French ranking has also come under scrutiny. The BCS commented ” France had a single loss against Germany and following a preseason #1 ranking they only fell to #2.”

Japan was ranked #3 with victories including Manchuria, Borneo and the Philippines.

I had a good laugh at the United States fourth place finish…


[my apologies to mike gundy]

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