Monday, March 20, 2006

Billy Packer is not smart

During the broadcast of Sunday’s Villanova game, Jim Nantz and Billy Packer referred to the biting criticism they directed at NCAA Tournament selection committee chair Craig Littlepage during CBS’ tournament selection show last Sunday. Billy Packer never apologized and did not seem to be overly happy to be talking about it. (The same was the case during the first game he broadcasted.) Jim Nantz was doing most of the talking and tried to be humble, admitting that they were proven dead wrong.

Needless to say, we didn’t agree with BP last week. The SEC deserved six bids as much as we deserve a Pulitzer. At least two of their teams made the Sweet 16. Six teams from the Big Ten were invited and exactly zero are still dancing. Don’t tell us about the power conferences. The Big East was good this year. They deserved eight bids. The SEC sucked this year. So did the Big Ten and the Big 12. Those three conferences should have received a combined 10 bids. While the top of the ACC was very good, the bottom was not. The selection committee correctly awarded them four bids.

We completed our bracket accordingly and, after two rounds, let's see who’s smarter.

We had all four remaining Big East teams correct. (We actually picked five to make it to week two. We had Pitt beating Bradley, not vice versa.) We got the two ACC teams correct. (We picked three to make it; similarly, we had UNC over George Mason.)

We got one out of two MVC teams. (While we had Bradley exposing Kansas as bullshit, we thought Pitt would be too tough). Likewise for the Pac 10 (we didn’t know about WU’s Brandon Roy). We correctly picked that Texas would be the lone Big 12 survivor. Ditto for Gonzaga and Memphis from the WCC and Conference USA.

We were only half right about the SEC. While we correctly called Tennessee out as overrated, we did not think LSU or Florida would still be around.

In the end, 11 out of 16 is OK. We’re comforted by the fact that two Cinderella’s (George Mason and Bradley) got one round further (so far) than we picked them.

That’s right Billy Pack, we’re solidly behind the mid-majors. (And the Big East.)

Nantz and Packer: We heart the Missouri Valley
Nantz and Packer: What mid-majors?

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