Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Big: East Region

We've saved the best for last. In my opinion, and the opinion of many others, the East Region is the toughest out there. Let's dive right in because there is lots to discuss.

'Cuse is in the House: The Orange are taking their talents to Cleveland for Round 1 and will take on the Fighting Larry Birds from Indiana State. If they are able to avoid the upset bid from the #14 seed, they'll either play #6 Xavier (in Cleveland - Thank you selection committee!) or #11 Marquette, a Big East foe that Syracuse lost to in January. Not going to lie, but the second round scares us. Xavier is a sneaky team and they'll have somewhat of a home-court advantage, while Marquette is a team that knows Syracuse, plays them every year, and has a victory against them two months ago. If Cuse can get out of Round 2, we'll feel better about things.  The East Region is located in Newark, NJ aka Syracuseville East. Potential Sweet 16 opponent is North Carolina, a match up we kind of like. Hold that thought.

Big East Tournament, Part 2: We know Cuse and Marquette are in this bracket, but there's also #9 Villanova and #5 West Virginia. Nova hasn't won a game in ages, so we are going to go with everyone's favorite flashback Cinderella, #8 George Mason. Meanwhile, Huggie Bear and the boys will actually tip in the first game on Thursday in Tampa, taking on Clemson (a team that just played late Tuesday night in Dayton - Thank you Selection Committee! Love, Clemson). What will definitely be a grind it out, physical game, we are going to take WVU. An added bonus would be Bob Huggins rubbing one of his player's faces, or at least getting nose to nose during a timeout. Potential second round game for WVU puts them against Kentucky, the team they upset last year to go to the Final Four. Huggins also owns Calipari, so while Kentucky looks to have more talent, don't count out the Eers.

You Never Forget Your First: Get your mind out of the gutter. Just about three months ago, Daily Onions made our first Final Four projection of the year. Since then, we've been riding the bandwagon of Sullinger, Diebler, Lighty, Buford, Lauderdale and Craft, aka THE Ohio State University. In case you forgot, this is what we wrote back on December 21 on why OSU would make the Final Four: Dominant Player (Sullinger) + Experience (Lighty played with Havlicek) + Tough, but not too tough of a schedule (Two road losses to the second and third best teams in the conference) = OSU in Final 4. We are sticking to our guns, and Ohio State will be in Houston. It pains me to say, but after taking down Kentucky, OSU will take out Syracuse in the Elite 8 (who would have beat UNC in the Sweet 16) to cut down the nets in Newark.

And then what? Our Final Four includes OSU, Duke, Kansas and Florida. When we first filled out our bracket on Monday, we had OSU beating Duke. Even with new information available and all signs pointing to Duke's Kyrie Irving ready to see some action this week, we are still going to go with OSU. (By the way, the "Chance Irving plays this week" news on Twitter on Tuesday was the equivalent of the public address announcer saying "Daniel LaRusso is going to fight" at the All Valley Karate Championship in 1984. I can only imagine what Twitter would have looked like if people heard what Myagi did in the locker room). OSU will face the Rock Chalk Jayhawk in the National Championship Game, and with a final score of 70-66, Jared Sullinger does his best Carmelo Anthony impression and leads his team to a National Championship as a freshman.

Now that we've gotten that all taken care of, we can watch some basketball! Odds that our picks are even relatively close to what actually chance. Odds that your picks are tell us! Show us YOUR Onions. Lots of entries came in on Wednesday, so make sure you don't miss out on the fun. I mean who wouldn't want an entire Daily Onions post about them??

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