Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Big Ten in the Tournament

For all the media-types claiming the Big Ten is weak, the NCAA Tournament has given them freedom to claim "I told you so".

But in my eyes, the NCAA Tourney has shown how strong the Big Ten actually is. Walk with me, I'll show you....

- There were six Big Ten teams that made the dance. Ohio State, Wisconsin, Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, Michigan State.
- There are six teams still alive in the dance. Ohio State, UCLA, Florida, Oregon, North Carolina, Georgetown.

- Ohio State alone shows strength from the conference. They're in the Final Four, so shut up.
- Yes, Wisconsin choked big time. The only 2-seed not to make the elite eight, dammit.
- Indiana stomped Gonzaga in the first round 70-57, then lost to UCLA (a team that is still alive). They lost to the Bruins by only 5 points. Kansas lost to UCLA by 13 last night.
- Purdue upset Arizona in the first round, then fell to Florida (another team that is still alive). But they gave Florida the scare of their lives, and the Gators only won in the final minute.
- Illinois came in a 12-seed and nearly knocked off 5-seed Va Tech, falling by 2 points in the final seconds.
- Michigan State upset Marquette in the first round, but fell to North Carolina (another team that is still alive). MSU was beating UNC with about 8 minutes to play, but couldn't hold on.

So yes, the Big Ten has only one team left standing. But three of the other teams in the conference had to face the best squads in the NCAA before they would allow themselves a trip home. I consider that a strength.

By the way, the Big 12 has no teams left. The almighty Kansas got an ass-whuppin, and the Texas Durants are home too. Let's see the articles on the weakness on that conference.

1 comment:

Christopher said...

Good points. Most of the Big Ten were underdogs playing higher seeds. That's the way the committee laid it out. I thought the Big Ten showed pretty well.