The first day of March Madness did not disappoint. Of the 16 games, a quarter of them went into overtime, and half of them came down to the wire. There were only three true upsets (I don't consider the results of the 8-9 game an upset since they have essentially the same seed) but several other close calls. And just as I suspected, it was the 12 seeds losing to 5 seeds in two of the upsets -- and the third 5-12 game of the day should have been won by the 12, but NC State gave away the game at the free throw line and St. Louis survived (Go Billikins!)
Speaking of weird mascot names, Friday is not nearly as good a day for mascots as Thursday was, but it does have one hall of fame level team name: the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. What is a Chanticleer, you ask? Well, it's a rooster. But Chanticleer sounds much cooler, doesn't it?
Lumberjacks (Stephen F. Austin) and Colonials (George Washington) are unusual enough -- they're just not that good. The Ragin' Cajuns of Louisiana Lafayette are always a fine choice and the Eastern Kentucky Colonels has a certain charm to it. But I miss the Blue Hens and the Jaspers already (and the Jaspers put up quite a fight against the defending champs).
We've got both UCLA and Arizona in action today. The Pac-12 had some mixed results on Thursday. Oregon handled a BYU team playing without their second leading scorer pretty handily, and Arizona State came within a fraction of a second (and a fraction of an inch of a blocked shot for that matter) of an upset over Texas. But the most embarrassing and lopsided loss of the day was suffered by Colorado at the hands of Pitt. (I blame the fact that their mascot is really a bison, but they call themselves Buffaloes; North Dakota State isn't one-and-done, are they?)
Use this thread for Friday NCAA discussions.