Brackets out tonight!
Clemson upsets Duke: Consider that foreshadowing of Duke missing yet another Final Four. They might not choke in the first round like they did a year ago, but being booted before the first weekend is over isn't far-fetched. (UNC almost was upset themselves, against VA Tech.)
Tennessee shocked by sizzling Arkansas: Here's the biggest implication -- if UNC win the ACC Tournament, it assures the Tar Heels they will get to stay in that Raleigh regional. (I think if the Vols had won the SEC, they would have had a claim.)
I have been on the Vols Final Four bandwagon since last March: Does this loss inspire them... or expose some fatal flaw that will derail them before they reach the Final Four?
Georgia pulls off the double-double: They beat Kentucky and Mississippi State... in the same day! With that kind of momentum (and without having to play Tennessee), we could see a miracle Bulldogs run. Four league wins all regular season; three in three days. Amazing.
Illinois miracle rolls on: The Illini are one win away from a miraculous NCAA Tournament bid. That said: They'll have to play a 4th game in 4 days against no-nonsense Wisconsin.
Pitt spanks Georgetown for Big East Tourney title: Pitt scares me more than any other team in the tournament field. Here's why: They have the make-up to go to the Final Four -- or flame out in the first weekend. I have no idea what to do with this team in my bracket.
Big 12: Kansas-Texas for the championship, but it's for way more than bragging rights, or even a Big 12 Tournament title trophy -- the winner likely gets that coveted No. 2 seed for that Houston regional.
SEC: Never been prouder to be affiliated with the Sporting Blog than today, after following Spencer Hall's utterly amazing coverage of the tornado in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome.
UCLA wins Pac-10 championship: I would give them the No. 1 overall 1-seed. As long as they're playing in Anaheim, then Phoenix, that's all they should care about. (That and Mbah a Moute's ankle.)
WAC: Triple-OT Madness! Not sure if you can have a better tournament auto-bid than a winner-take-all showdown between two teams that goes THREE overtimes. Congrats to Boise State. They definitely earned it.
Congrats to UMBC, which earned their first-ever NCAA Tournament bid. (More small-conference auto-bids: Coppin State, which will always have a place in my heart for its 1997 win over 2-seed South Carolina as a 15-seed, earning the ESPN.com front-page headline under my direction as college basketball editor: "Coppin a Feel: Cocks Get Blocked." And don't forget Cal State Fullerton, earning its first bid since the late 70s. All will enjoy a few days of spotlight before being drummed out of the Tournament in its first round.)
Tim Welsh out at Providence: They should be able to get someone good to replace him. It's a small school in the rough-and-tumble Big East, but you're the only game in town, the fans are amazing and if you do well, a bigger/better job is a guarantee.
John Lackey out 3-4 weeks: I'm not worried about the Angels' chances in the weak AL West; but it is something to keep in mind if you haven't had a fantasy draft yet.
Rich Rodriguez has first practice at Michigan: They will be much better. Maybe not today. Maybe not next month. Maybe not even next season. But eventually.
Terrelle Pryor Watch: He'll make his decision this week. I think he'll pick Ohio State, but I'm not sure why: Why would he want to sit behind Todd Boeckman for a year? I loved the idea of Pryor signing with Memphis, where he would start immediately -- in football and in hoops.
Varsity Dad Update: Congrats to Dice-K on his wife giving birth to Dice-Kid.