I don’t know how to say this nicely, but Dick Vitale is on crack. Of course he picks Duke to win it all, since he always picks Duke for everything. But he also picked Maryland over Stanford to win the West, and Arizona to win the Midwest.
I guarantee you that Duke won’t win the tournament. Just, they’re beatable. Because their rotation is so shallow, if their top guys are off, then they’re doomed. I don’t know, any team is beatable, but they lost 4 times this year and almost lost to Maryland 2 additional times.
Here’s why I disagree with Arizona. I keep saying this, but the only time Arizona has ever exceeded expectation in the tournament was the year they won it all, the year they were 5th in the Pac-10. No matter how much talent they have, they manage to lose early. So, I’ve learned to never count on Arizona. They always find a way to lose early.
And the Maryland thing. Actually, I kind of agree with him. I’m most scared by far by Maryland in our bracket. Because of the same reason everyone else is – the teams they’ve beaten. They beat Duke and played them strong in two other games, beat Wake Forest, North Carolina and Virginia. But what all these people (Vitale included) ignore is who’s beaten them, and they got beat a lot. I remember Steve Francis’ interview on Jim Rome and he was mentioning how his Terrapins were paining him by their losing. So, they have big wins but they have big losses also.
Dude, the analysis on ESPN’s site is incredible. Anyway, I think we have a decent shot, because their center is prone to foul trouble, and we’ve got the Collins brothers. That difference could be huge. They’re a short team, and that could really work to our advantage.
But what really makes me think Dickie V is stoned out of his mind is him naming USC as a sleeper. I’m sorry, but USC just lost to like Washington State? They suck, it’s that simple. Also, Vitale named Steve Lavin his Pac-10 coach of the year. Uh, no.
But yeah, what do I know.
One thing that is encouraging to me is our win against UCLA and the game against Arizona. Both those games, the opposing teams were mostly on. And, we still played well, UCLA we beat, and ‘zona was close, but I think with Justin Davis we would have won. Meaning, we’re a better team. Another really encouraging thing was seeing us being able to handle UCLA’s press. It sometimes forced a Collins to dribble the ball upcourt, but, we found a system that worked, so I’m not worried about that anymore.
I’m pretty excited.