Sold and Buried
Well, since we last posted 24 hours ago or so several things happened, none of which affected Monday night's announcement of the NCAA field.
Out West, the McClatchy group bought Knight-Ridder, the parent corporation that provides the desk in this building from which this particular blog occurs on many nights.
It's possible we'll be re-sold again if McClathy decides the plate is too full, so ultimately it will be determined if I'm an asset or aging Full Time Equivalency, to use accounting speak. :)
Someone jokingly suggested I might get traded to the Sacramento Bee for future considerations to cover the Monarchs and Stanford.
The second thing is thanks to the move to Selection Monday, some of you might have trouble finding this morning's print preview of the bracket that was un-referenced, unless it appears in a later edition, and placed on the last page of the regular sports section, not the basketball special section where it appeared in the past.
Space limitations also necessitated a cut, but most of what was said has already been spoken to in blogs here the last few days. Locally, Temple could end up anywhere from a 6 to an 11 to make the bracket work and help geography. Villanova is hoping for an at-large bid and since only two wrong losers of any value occurred, the Wildcats have a good shot at an at-large bid.
Indiana State is not likely to be rescued after losing to Missouri State (formerly SW Missouri), and Western Kentucky, which earlier lost to Middle Tennessee is still a 50-50 shot at this hour.
I'll be back early in the afternoon after the final AP poll, completing 30 years, is published.
I know: "Hey, wait, who are your top seeds?"
I ranked teams as follows but fell on my own sword predicting what the committee might do:
1. North Carolina (speaks for itself)
2. Duke (also speaks for itself)
3. Ohio State (I really liked Maryland to be a No. 1 but don't know if an unprecedented lack of conference regular or tournament title will be a hinderance. And this works better for placement).
4. Tennesseee (Redeemed with an SEC tournament win).
5. Maryland (very strong)
6. LSU (was strong all year)
7. Oklahoma (toss-up with Connecticut for this and No. 8. Sooners might even be a No. 6).
8. Connecticut (unless the Huskies are a No. 7).
9. Rutgers (Costly loss to West Virginia).
10. Baylor (Seems strongest from other contenders for upper slots).
11. DePaul (Stay home in Chicago for early rounds).
Other contenders -- To fill the rest, which is a contest, Georgia most likely a third or fourth seed, Utah potentially a fourth seed, Michigan State, UCLA, Purdue, Stanford and North Carolina State. Ones that don't make it, fall to No. 5 seeds.
As for sites by geographical preference -- North Carolina and Duke could both end up in Norfolk, although that might mean a No. 8 or No. 9 seed for Old Dominion.
Oklahoma to Boulder. Ohio State to Chicago or Penn State. Connecticut to Trenton or Penn State. Rutgers to Trenton. Tennessee and/or LSU to Nashville. Maryland to Trenton, Penn State or Norfolk. Purdue to Purdue. Georgia possibly to Nashville or Norfolk. Stanford to Arizona or Denver. UCLA to Arizona or Denver.
OK, talk to you later. -- Mel