Pages

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

College Hoops Top 25 (3/6)


So, here we go. We're headlong into the conference tournaments, and rapidly changing perceptions and predictions are reigning supreme. A good end to your regular season, a bad end to your regular season, a good run in your conference tournament. These are things that will make most people forget (present company included) the pros and the cons of the full body of work you put in during the past 4 months. Granted, teams playing their best at this time of year usually have the edge come tourney time, but to write off a season's worth of results solely based on recent play will usually end up putting you in some hot water...

But that's why I'm here. I've soaked it all up, I'll continue to soak it up (including my attendance @ the Big East Tournament semifinals), and I'll make sure you're in a good position to soak up all the cakes after using my knowledge to topple your coworkers, and take all the money from them that they'd otherwise spend buying their "lucky" brand of scratch ticket...

You better start getting your soak on sooner rather than later, though, because this is my last Top 25 of the year. Yep, next week the tournament field will be set, and I'll be breaking that down, trying to pull in my first major tourney pool score since 2006. What? I never said I could win every time. IT's not like I'm in possession of Gray's Sports Almanac, or anything...

Or am I...?

Nah, I'm not. Although Rooch's Pleasure Paradise certainly does have a nice ring to it. Then again, that's what I already call my bed when describing it to the fairer sex, so I might have to continue mulling that one over...

OK, enjoy the Final 25 of the year, folks, and I'll catch you next week for the full field breakdown...


College Hoops Top 25
1. Kentucky (30-1) 1

2. North Carolina (27-4) 7

It's funny, because that last possession of the UNC/Kentucky match up from earlier in the year still speaks volumes in terms of what I think of UNC. Talented, aggressive, but still a team looking for an identity when it comes to last possession shots. Something that could easily end up costing them in the tournament. The catch is, the way they're playing now, teams will be lucky to even have that situation come up when they play the Heels in the dance. Here's the long and short of it. This is a team that was considered the best in the country before the season began, and they're peaking at the right time. Plain and simple. Probably why I had no trouble pushing them past the Orange, even though Syracuse continued their winning ways. UNC is just too talented, and talent is more often than not what leads to cutting down the nets...

Well that, and a pair of those sketchy trainer scissors. Is it me, or could they stand to have some better scissors on hand to cut down those nets? Yeah, it's probably just me...

3. Syracuse (30-1) 2

4. Ohio St. (25-6) 9

The home loss to Wisconsin was bad, but the road win @ Michigan St. was great. Another pre season favorite that's playing well at the right time, the Buckeyes could go a long way towards reestablishing their Final Four cred by cutting down the nets and winning the B1G 10 Tournament...

5. Marquette (25-6) 4
Question: Will Kansas end up screwing me?
Answer: Probably...those rat bastards.

The Golden Eagles did good to stick it to a young Georgetown team to finish off their regular season, but falling asleep like that at Cincinnati wasn't a good sign. Good news is, they shouldn't have motivational issues when it comes to the tournament. Something I think they'll prove this week when they take the court @ MSG.

6. Kansas (26-5) 11

There's no denying the Jayhawks, anymore, if for no other reason than there isn't a team with their talent that's nearly as consistent.  They've now won 8 straight, and with Tyshawn Taylor continuing to shine next to Thomas Robinson, they could easily reel off enough wins to capture the Big XII tournament title and make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament...

7. Michigan St. (24-7)

8. Missouri (27-4) 5

9. Duke (26-5) 6

You live by the 3, and you die by the 3. Especially when you don't play a lick of transition defense and you're not too stout on the glass. Still a very dangerous bunch, but the "Crushing @ Cameron" makes you wonder just how ready for prime time this relatively undersized crew actually is...

10. Georgetown (22-7) 8

11. Wichita St. (27-5) 10

Fro-mentum? If it wasn't already a word,
it certainly should be...
12. Murray St. (30-1) 12

The Racers were pushed to the brink in the Ohio Valley tournament final, but it's the type of resiliency they showed in nailing down their automatic bid that should eventually serve them well in the upcoming tournament. Isaiah Canaan is a gamer, the type of player some of those elite clubs above wouldn't mind having when the clock is winding down and the game is on the line. They probably wouldn't mind having big man Edward Daniel , either. Everyone knows a good fro can go a long way towards having a good run in the tournament. I don't have proof to back that up, per say, but I still think it's at the very least, good karma...

13. Michigan (22-8) 13


14. Creighton (28-5) 17

Team McDermott (head coach Greg and star player Doug) has righted the ship, and the Blue Jays once again look like a player after capturing the Missouri Valley Conference tournament title. They've peeled off 7 in a row after dropping 3 straight in February, and have shown great poise in winning 4 of those 7, including the title game, by fewer than 4 points. Two of those being in overtime. That's great practice for what they're about to face as they push towards New Orleans, and I wouldn't be shocked if that practice pays off...

15. Wisconsin (23-8) 21

16. Florida St. (21-9) 19

17. Baylor (25-5) 14

18. Florida (22-9) 16

The Smart-est Guy in the Room? I get it...
19. St Mary's (27-5) NR

20. Virginia Commonwealth (27-6) NR

After their impressive run to the Colonial title and the automatic bid, you can't help but wonder. Could VCU do it again? They made the Final Four as an 11 seed last year, and head coach Shaka Smart has them playing well at the right time, and poised to make another run. Sure, they're resume isn't anything to brag about, and they don't do any one thing particularly well, but they play with a tenacity that's just perfect for March. Besides, are you really going to pick against them in the first round after what they did to your bracket last year? I didn't think so, and I don't think that would be an awful move, either...

21. UNLV (25-7) 18

A trip to New Orleans in 2012 for Indiana wouldn't be any more
surprising than Marquette's run with Dwayne Wade in 2003...
22. Indiana (24-7) 25

Winning 7 of 8 to close the season, including a 15 point beat down of Michigan St., really helped put Tom Crean's Hoosiers in a good spot heading into post season play. Pretty impressive for a team that went 5-6 after starting out 12-0. It shows they have poise, something a a Final Four veteran like Crean (Marquette '03) knows will help overcome certain deficiencies when the going gets tough...

23. Temple (24-6) 24

The buzz is already starting to build around Atlantic 10 rival, St. Louis, and their great computer numbers, but for now the Owls are the #1 bird on the block. A status that could easily change in what promises to be one of the more competitive conference tournaments in the land. Just lots of unusually close games in that conference all season long, and that should make for a very volatile week...

24. New Mexico (24-6) 20

25. Long Beach St. (22-8) 22


just missed: Gonzaga, San Diego St., Louisville, St. Louis, Purdue, Vanderbilt, Drexel

dropped: (15) Louisville; (23) Drexel


There's no "Games to Watch" segment this week, because if you need help finding games to watch, then I'm afraid the reality is that you probably don't even have cable.  Which is unfortunate. For those that do have cable, just switch on any of the many ESPN networks, and I'm sure there will be some sort of conference tournament game going on that will probably end up being worthy of your time...

So get to watchin', friends, and I'll catch you in a week. IT's gonna be glorious...


Teddy Williams...
100...

#$> 

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

UNC is gonna win it all! Everyone will pick Kentucky, so they can't win. So pick UNC and take all the cakes!

Anonymous said...

All year your on the Mich St train and now you gots Kansas ahead of em...im not judging, because i think your an innovator..But every year Kansas is hyped and every year they get soft in the tournament...Like a twinkie, Like a twinkie! On a side note i know nothing of Murray St, but starting to hear a bunch of buzz. Elite 8 team? DUUUUUKE

Post a Comment