Mar 242005
Authors: Scott Bondy

Man, the Sweet 16 is pretty sweet. Wait, the whole damn tourney is sweet.

We've got some lucky seeds left and we've got the No. 1 seeds. My brackets are so screwed up, you'd think I hadn't watched a single game this year. But I'm lovin' every upset and every wrong prediction.

I had Wake Forrest and Oklahoma going to the Final Four – how embarrassing. Utah came out of nowhere. I was sure Kevin Bookout of Oklahoma would shut Utah's Andrew Bogut down, and he kinda did, but it wasn't enough. We'll see how good the Utes are against an extremely well-coached Kentucky team. Wake, not so much of a surprise. They were too soft.

The only other team softer than Wake would have to be Kansas. All year I figured Kansas was overrated. The Jayhawks got way too much credit just because they are Kansas.

But they had talent. You can bet they would've been playing deeper into March if Roy Williams were still there. And I'm pretty sure Bill Self is kicking himself for leaving Illinois (but the team wouldn't have gotten this far with him).

There isn't a better sporting event, playoff or bowl system better than March Madness. It is the best time of the year and anyone who loves sports knows this.

March Madness epitomizes what sports should be about. The tourney shows how far a team with heart can go. It shows that the little guys can take down the big guys. And best of all, college basketball has Dickie V. It's just a shame they don't let him cover every single game (let alone any game).

Then there's Bobby Knight, arguably the best coach in the game. The man is nuts, but he is obviously also a genius. Taking No. 6 seed Texas Tech to the Sweet 16 is an accomplishment in itself.

Although I've done a pitiful job so far, here are my picks for the final stretch to St. Louis.

North Carolina will have a field day with Villanova because it is going the distance and will ultimately be cutting down the nets when it's all said and done. North Carolina State has the momentum after beating my Huskies. The Wolfpack will knock off a good Wisconsin team, but barely.

Duke beats Michigan State because, frankly, that's what Duke does: It beats Michigan State.

Sadly, or not in my case, Duke will go down to cross-town rival UNC in the Final Four, which may be the most exciting game of the year.

Or you can disregard everything I just said, because no one knows what's going to happen. That's the beauty of March.

 Posted by at 6:00 pm

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