1) Maybe it was just me, or maybe it is from watching Stephen Curry routinely make unthinkable HORSE shots in games, but when Josh Hagins of Little Rock pulled up from the half court logo to attempt a last second, game tying 3-point shot, I immediately thought it was going to drop. And it did. Two overtimes later, and Little Rock was dancing, literally and figuratively. I had Purdue making a deep tournament run, so this busted my bracket a bit, but I can’t deny that I love to see Cinderella’s pull off crazy upsets like this.
2) That little dude on Yale, Makai Mason, played out of his mind. The only thing Baylor could do was fight amongst themselves during timeouts. In a one game elimination, all it takes is one guy to get hot to pull off a big upset. But it wasn’t just a fluke, Yale has a legitimate squad. They are big, hit the boards, play strong team defense, and share the ball on offense. Yale will face Duke in the 2nd round, who beat them by 19 points earlier in the year, but I would expect Saturday’s game to be much closer.
3) Grayson Allen, Brandon Ingram, and Marshall Plumlee are a beast of a triumvirate. Duke played the entire game vs. UNC Wilmington in 2nd gear, except for one 8-minute stretch to begin the 2nd half which basically ended the game. It wasn’t a blow out, but it never felt like Duke was truly in danger of losing. I still like them as my Final Four pick from the wide open West region.
4) Two of my sleeper picks, Purdue and Arizona, were sent home. Thanks for showing up guys, you can pick up your participation ribbons at the airport. My only “bracket buster” pick that played yesterday, Gonzaga, cruised to victory on the back of Sabonis’ stat stuffing performance (21 pts, 16 rebs, 4 asts, 2 blks, 1 stl). I wouldn’t bet against them in round 2 vs. Utah.
By Michael Halpern
Twitter: Imaginary Brick Wall (@ImaginaryBrickW)