I mean: How can you NOT be rooting for Baylor?
Sure, it seems a little weird that you can overrule an entire season's body of work by simply winning 4 straight games in mid-March. But that's part of the Tournament's charm.
On the other end of the spectrum, there are the teams that simply don't get it done when they need to. I'm talking about Florida -- who will miss the Tournament after losing to Auburn last night, and (even as a Florida fan) I have no sympathy. Too many opportunities (throughout the season) to control their own destiny that they weren't able to take advantage of. The Gators don't deserve it -- for a 2nd straight year.
(Speaking of taking advantage of opportunities, there is Maryland, which should have punched its ticket by beating Wake Forest -- sure seems like a lot of Tournament locks are simply "taking off" the conference tournament season: Wake, Pitt, UConn, Kansas, Oklahoma. They didn't need to do anything in these tournaments, and thus played with zero sense of urgency.)
But, hey, how about Duquesne!
(Here's a weird one: St. Mary's got shellacked by Gonzaga in the West Coast final. That should have been the final word on their Tournament resume for the Selection Committee -- but then they scheduled a random non-conference game against Eastern Washington, who they clocked. Will the Committee pay attention to that? Is it the tiny nudge they need to make the field? Imagine if, after losing last week, Davidson had quickly scheduled power-conference Bubble team in the Top 50, giving both the chance to add one more impressive W.)
Wow, Syracuse is on some kind of roll. Hope for their sake they don't peak this week, rather than next week (or the week after).
Today's Games to Watch:
Big 12: Baylor-Mizzou (Go Baylor.)
America East final: Binghamton vs. UMBC (15-16 record!)
ACC Semi: Maryland-Duke (Amazing hatred)
P-10: USC-Ariz St (USC win would bump a Bubble team)
C-USA: Memphis-Tulsa (Go Tulsa.)
SEC: Miss St-LSU (MSU playing for bid?)
A-10: Duquesne-Temple (some Bubble team is screwed)
Big West: SD St-Utah (SD St in, even if they lose? Hmm)
Big East: Syracuse-L'ville (Cuse all the way?)
Enjoy a great day of hoops. A whole bunch of Bubble teams are screwed already, with more holding their breath today. But, as I said: No sympathy. They had their chances. Plenty of 'em. (Not that I'm bitter about Florida. Oh no, not at all.)