Ain’t This Tournament Great?!
The NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament never seems to disappoint, and this year is no exception. History has been made all over the place.
We saw the second time, since the tournament was expanded to 64 teams in 1985, that a 16 seed beat a 1 seed in the first round. Farleigh Dickinson's upset over Purdue on Friday night is arguably the biggest upset in Tournament history.
We also saw a 15 seed in Princeton not only knock off 2nd seeded Arizona in round 1, they beat a pretty good Missouri team 78-63 on Saturday in round 2.
12th seeded Furman upset 5th seeded Virginia when Virginia threw the ball away and the Paladins hit a three-pointer in the final seconds to get the win in the first round. And another number 1 seed in Kansas was knocked out in the second round by Arkansas.
And of course, 7th seeded Michigan State upset 2nd seeded Marquette (the Big East champion) on Sunday to advance to the 15th Sweet 16 of the Tom Izzo era.
With only 16 teams left, we have a few of Cinderellas still looking to get to Houston and the Final Four. The South region's 15th seed, Princeton will face Creighton on Friday night. The East region's 9th seed, Florida Atlantic, will play Tennessee in the second game in New York on Thursday night.
And the West region's 8th seed, Arkansas, will face Connecticut in Las Vegas on Thursday night.
Is MSU a Cinderella? Even though they're a 7 seed, I don't think so, given their history in the Tom Izzo era. But they'll have a tough game on Thursday night against Kansas State.
But all of these close games that we saw in the opening weekend, all the drama, is why the NCAA Tournament is one of the greatest events in American sports. The final seconds of the Furman-Virginia game was just wild. And did I mention 16th seeded Farleigh Dickinson upsetting Big Ten champ Purdue?
Don't ever change, NCAA Tournament, you are perfect just the way you are!