Sunday, March 30, 2008

Why dont I trust my instincts?

The Final Four is set, with all four 1 seeds making it for the first time since the field expanded to 64 teams. Although, if Stephen Curry hadnt picked up his dribble with 2 seconds left, we may be witnessing the second double digit seed in the final four in 3 years.

As I looked over the bracket two weeks ago, one thing that stood out to me was the strength of the 1-3 seeds compared to the rest of the field. Obviously, these are always the best team, but as the Nike Sparq commercial says, My better is better than your better. That was never more true than this year. I looked over the bracket and tried to decide who the surprise teams would be, and I got it right. I had Davidson in the Sweet 16. I didnt have the guts to have them beating Wisconsin, even though I really felt they would. Other than Davidson, the 7 teams in the Elite 8 were 1, 2 or 3 seeds. None of this weekends games were even close, until the Kansas-Davidson game.

Now, let me make my point...

I looked over the bracket and thought, "There is a real chance all 1 seeds will be in the final four." Of course, when I actually filled out the bracket, I talked myself into thinking DJ Augustin and Texas could handle Derrick Rose and Memphis. This did not happen, as evidenced by Rose's 21 points and 9 assists. So, I have 3 of 4 teams in the final four and have no chance at winning the office pool.

I am still going to stick with UNC as my winner. Tyler Hansbrough will singlehandedly carry them if he has to. It was a small miracle to hear Jay Bilas (a duke grad and coach k call girl) talk about how he had never seen someone as competitive as Hansbrough, even the great Michael Jordan. As much as I would like to see Kansas win it, even though Bill Self is an overrated coach more on this later, so the rebels will have lost to the eventual champ, I dont think they can handle Ty Lawson and Psycho T.

More on Bill Self...

Did anyone see that "play" he called with 30 seconds left coming out of the timeout? I think it was called, dribble around and try to get in the lane. There wasnt even a ball screen!!!! And people wonder why it took him 6 years to take Kansas to the final four. He almost got beat by a guy that looks like a middle schooler and a white guy who doesnt look much older. Neither of these guys were taller than 6 feet. It is realistic that all 5 Kansas starters will be on an NBA roster next season, 6 if you include Sasha Kaun. I think I cold take a roster like that to the Final Four.

Now, for the other side of the draw...

Memphis and UCLA showdown in a battle of the freshman. I dont know if I am ready to make a pick on this one. All I can hope for is that Dick Enberg and Jay Bilas are not calling that game. I think Jay Bilas is going to be kicked out of the Duke Media club because of the way he drooled over Kevin Love. Even Dick Enberg, who only did 2 of 4 opening day games because they couldnt prop him up that long, got excited about this kid. I think I even heard them talking about the way he shaves his sideburns :) HOW DOES HE DO IT?!?!? THEY ARE PERFECT...AND HE IS ONLY A FRESHMAN!!!!

Derrick Rose is my favorite of this years freshman class. Because of that, I will pick Memphis. They have dominated the last two games, while UCLA has not been able to play a complete game. That means there will be a UNC-Memphis final, which I called at the beginning of the year. The only change is that I picked Memphis to win. I think their free throw shooting will let them down, letting Roy and Psycho T cut down the nets in San Antonio.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Stuff White People Like

I have a new favorite website (I had to find something new once Keiths blog went all Politically Correct), called Stuff White People Like. Here is the link.

Basically, they have a big list of things that white people like, with an explanation for each one. Also, they have running features like, White People in the News and White Spots.

White Spots highlights places around the world commonly frequented by us crackers.

Honestly, I dont know why I never came up with this idea. The funniest part about it is how much white people love it. The site has become a huge hit very quickly. It was started at the beginning of the year and has received almost 18 million hits.

I love how something like this can be covered in the New York or LA Times as a great or fantastic website, while a site called Stuff Black People Like would be labeled as racially insensitive if links to it were forwarded constantly day after day.

In fact, I think there should be a site called Stuff Black People Like just to educate all people that have grown up in Utah! How else are they supposed to understand their culture when only 57 live in the whole state?

Ok, enough about the color of skin...

For some reason, I have had writers block every time I try to express my feelings on this years NCAA Tournament. The good thing is I am pretty sure I know the reason why, which was my vague recap of the Mountain West Tournament. I have decided to censor myself publicly on the subject so as not to arouse feelings of hatred in myself or from other people. I NEVER censor myself, especially on this blog, which I started to express my feelings and opinions on whatever I feel like writing about, as no one is forced to read, much less agree with me. But in this situation, it felt like the right thing to do. Now, I just need to get over my pride so I can continue to entertain all my fans! :)

Anyways, I will maybe try some live blogging during this weekends action to see if that gets me out of this funk.

Hugs and Hand pounds,
Wink's greatest fan

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Bracket Challenge

I made a group on ESPN Tournament Challenge for anyone who wants to join. I want to see everyone representing their schools in this group. Here is the info.

Group Name: Joe Darger's Fauxhawk
Password: fauxhawk

Even if you are already in another group, you can get in this one also. Lets get the trash talk going.


Monday, March 17, 2008

The Brackets are Set

It has been an exciting weekend here in vegas. Lots of basketball, even some brawls, but overall a great few days.

UNLV is an 8 seed in the tournament. They have an opening round game against Kent State, which should be a great game. We are both smaller teams and should match up well. I cant wait to see them against our defense.

BYU also ended up an 8, and they open up against Texas A&M. I will stick to what I have been saying over the past few weeks and say I wouldnt be surprised to see them make a little run this year. The big weakness would be a team that has some very athletic guards. A&M is a team I have not seen play too much, but they have had a very up and down season. Should be another great opening round game.

The rebs open up in Omaha. Ive never been there, but hopefully that will change this week. It is still up in the air, but if I were a betting man, I would say we are going to be there. Dont worry, I have already checked the weather...mid 50s and sunny. I would not travel for more snow. I am so sick of that white stuff!

Saturday included a victory dinner at Geisha. I had never been there before. It was amazing. I had the Filet Mignon and dont think I took breath for 5 minutes as I ate it. We had a really good time with everyone there.

The most exciting part of the weekend came after dinner. Me, Shay, Trevor and Lauren decided to go to Golden Spoon. I had a bit of a brain fart, and we ended up going one street to high. This led to our wonderful discovery...Tart Frozen Yogurt.

I have dreamt about this place for the last two nights, thats how great it was. For anyone that knows of pinkberry, it is one of the many imitations that has popped up lately. They have four different flavors, all made from fresh fruit juice. Then, you can pile on many different toppings. Fresh fruit, candy, even cereal. They have different parfaits and smoothies they make too. My goal is to go everyday until school starts again.

I had strawberry yogurt with strawberries, peaches and bananas piled on top. Instantly, I knew we had made a very important discovery. Trevor said that his new nickname for me is Christopher Columbus because my wrong turn lead to an earth changing discovery!

All in all, it was a great weekend. I could not imagine a better way to kick off spring break!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

It is oh so close

I am feeling spring break..even seeing it when I close my eyes. Right now, I am sitting in my backyard enjoying the last hour or so of a beautiful early spring day.

One of my new years resolutions is to improve my golf game. I know, thats not saying much, but it has been warm enough the last few days to take my swing practice from the garage or living room to the backyard. The local range isnt open yet, so I am depending on my trusty plastic wiffle balls. Its a good way to work on my swing. I had a breakthrough today! I lightened my grip and the swing came through more naturally. That will be one of many improvement made through the next 6 months.

On to college basketball...

Gonzaga got beat last night in their conference tournament, which basically guarantees that the MWC doesnt get three teams in. With the east coast bias that exists, the committee will never allow the WCC and MWC to get three bids, especially when they can throw another overrated big east team in! Hopefully Butler can come through tonight so another bubble spot doesnt get taken.

That is it for today. I did not get to enjoy the weather as much as I wanted to, since I had class from 12-6 this afternoon. Depressing...

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Championship Week

Only 4 more days until I can enjoy my spring break! Not only that, this weekend we saw the beginning of my favorite sports time of year, "Championship Week."

This is a marketing device created by ESPN for the college basketball conference tournaments that decide who gets the automatic invites to the NCAA Tournament. Mind you, it lasts about 9 days, but ESPN isn't CNN, they don't have cool devices to crunch numbers! (Quick side note: How can these news channels "declare" winners of political races when 1 out of 2500 precincts have reported?) I think the purpose of the marketing blitz is the fact they show the Women's NCAA tournament and the NIT for the next month and know the ratings will be lower than the NHL, which is saying something.

I think there have 5 automatic berths handed out up until now, but the big conferences don't have their tournaments. The greatest part about all of this is the perfect timing of spring break. Now, I don't have to skip class Thursday and Friday for the 32 games played in that time period. Plus, I will be at my parents house in Vegas, which means 62 inches of pure High Definition! Hopefully Keith and Janae can come through with HD this year, they choked worse than anyone paired up with Tiger! In addition to all this, SUU is dedicating 2 new buildings, 2 remodeled buildings and a clock tower on Friday afternoon, which means classes are canceled starting at noon. I still haven't gotten my hopes up too high for this, as it wouldn't surprise me if my stats professor didn't even know about this and gives us a Friday test.

My blogs will focus on the big dance for the next month or so. We are less than 7 days away from the CBS Selection Show. All I need is for the Rebels to come through in their tournament this weekend so I can watch the show without suffering a stress related death. Depending on how BYU does, and our own performance in the tournament, I am expecting a 9 seed...maybe 8 if we beat BYU in the finals. That will be another win over a top 30 RPI team. My word of the month is you read it? I think it moves to daily updates this week, which will cause me even more stress because of the daily movements of my rebels. As long as we can beat TCU first round, I think we are in.

That brings me to something else, but very closely related, that I am excited for. The Mountain West Conference Tournament. Another weekend of exciting games, and grumblings from the other fans about home court advantage.

Here is what I have to say on that subject. Yes, we get a home court advantage, and I have no problem with that. They do all they can to make it feel like a neutral court, i.e. UNLV logos are not seen on the court or in the arena, the rebs use a different locker room, they have to stay at a hotel instead of at home. But all in all, the Vegas fans show up in droves. Any team would give up all those things to host the tournament! To anyone who wants to make comments or complain about this, I would like to direct you to your favorite teams coach and athletic director, they voted in favor of it. As one assistant athletic director said last week, "No one is complaining when the revenue check comes in the mail!" Every team knows from day one of the season the tournament will be in with it. On a related note, UNLV went to the finals of the tournament 2 of the 4 years it was held in Denver...although not many people would know that since there was no one actually at the game.

Anyways, back to what I was talking about. The Wyoming fans are definitely the most annoying. WYO, WYO, they chant staggering around to find the right seats, since they cant read their tickets through the massive buzz they are enjoying. I will go out on a limb and say the conference has liked the fact they made mini runs through the last two tournaments, it definitely boosts alcohol sales! Since I cant get to Vegas until Thursday afternoon, I was hoping to miss the Wyoming game, but they will probably be BYU's sacrificial lamb in the late first round game.

New Mexico has a crazy tattooed guy that always comes. I expect a big number of NM fans, since they need a good run to lock up a tournament spot. And Air Force always has the few cadets that make the trip. As always, BYU will have their fair share of fans, but since it is a football school, they wont really show up until the finals. AS for the other teams, I don't think San Diego State really has any fans. TCU is just too far away for them to play in our league, although they make our football seem better. Colorado State hasn't won a game yet in conference, which equals a play in game exit wednesday morning. I don't know who would pay to see just that game. Utah will have a smattering of fans, but they wear red and will blend in with the UNLV and New Mexico fans.

I will make predictions later in the week, but let me just say this. The one team I do not want to play is Utah. Luke Nevill is a much better NBA prospect than Trent "I am such a horrible free throw shooter my wife is addicted to pain killers" Plaisted.

All in all, it is shaping up to be a great month. Wedding plans are gliding along smoothly, Shay will even be joining me for the conference tournament. As will one of my good friends, who just happens to be a BYU fan. Trevor "Cosmo" Tripp and his fiance Lauren will be staying with us.

To end, I have one complaint, why does this all have to happen in March when the weather starts getting warmer and it is absolutely beautiful outside?

Bracketologist in training

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

An empty mind

I have a huge desire to write a great blog today, but nothing is coming to me. Its been that kind of week. I guess I will just give some updates since my last post.

Wedding plans are coming along great. We went to Vegas this weekend to get a few things done. Our open house in the backyard is going to be very fun. I shouldnt even call it an open house, it will be a big party. We were looking into putting a plexiglass dancefloor over the pool, with floating lights underneath, but it ended up being too expensive. A custom floor needs to be made...too bad.

The best part of the weekend was a Full Ho feast. No, Full Ho is not one of those vegas is a great little chinese place off Jones and 95. I think I had a whole takeout box of Kung Pao beef.

I am currently sitting in my Geology Natural Disasters class. I dont think I have ever taken a more worthless class, but it count for the same GE credit as Chemistry. Our labs have been identifying rocks and minerals...stuff I did in junior high. The Professor is really cool though, that is what keeps me coming to class. He gets so excited about hot spots and earthquakes. There are a few guys in my class who suck up to him daily, which only makes him more excited to teach.

I recently discovered the game that Keith and janae have on the tops of their blogs, something like travelpod. Talk about an addiction! I still havent matched keiths high score, but I am getting there. Geology is a great time to practice. My sudoku is also improving rapidly. I will be taking alec to school soon! Wow, I sound like such a dork...but im not scared to admit my sudoku addictions. In fact, I always have one little book in my backpack, one in my car and another in the living room. Whenever I feel the urge, I can satisfy my brain. Monday, I had a two hour break between classes and didnt have any homework to do. I didnt feel like going home, so I went to the library and broke out the sudoku. Those two hours passed so fast!

Well, thats it for this rambling post. Hopefully I will have a more interesting topic to blog about later this week. March Madness is only a few weeks away...