Even those of us strung out in Texas in the midst of deafening Hip-Hop managed to keep one eye on The Tourney last weekend. And for hoops fans, it couldn’t have gone better. Comebacks, overtimes, buzzer beaters and a few mammoth upsets made for a wild first two rounds. Today the Madness continues. To adequately prepare you for another weekend of your ass parked on the couch, the TSS Crew pick the Elite 8 and preview the match-ups.
(1) Syracuse Vs. (5) Butler
Even while not at full strength due to the loss of center Arinze Onuaku, the Orange rolled through the first two rounds like a fall practice against the B-squad. Butler presents a bigger challenge, but ‘Cuse learned not to let their guard down in the bloodbath that was the Big East. Wes Johnson and company will be ready, and they’ll advance.
(2) West Virginia Vs. (11) Washington
The Mountaineers have lost starting point guard Darryl “Truck” Bryant & will have to overcome that if they want to advance. The loss will hurt them both from a depth & scoring standpoint, because his replacement Joe Mazulla isn’t known for lighting the nets on fire since injuring his shoulder earlier this year. Meanwhile, Washington has been getting great production out of guards Quincy Pondexter & Isaiah Thomas. With the way they’ve been playing as of late, Washington already had a decent chance to beat West Virginia & it’s only more likely with the loss of Bryant.
(2) Kansas State Vs. (6) Xavier
With the Jayhawks out, K-State finally gets the undivided love and attention of Sunflower State it’s always craved. And with Xaiver looming, a team they punked by 15 points, a trip to the Final 4 seems there for the taking. At the same time, the Stakes is High, and winning a game at home in December means little in March. Look for Xavier, behind backcourt star Jordan Crawford, to pull the upset.
Patrick M. — Xavier
(1) Kentucky Vs. (12) Cornell
If Cornell were to somehow win this game, it’d have to go down as one of the greatest upsets in college history. Why? Because no one on their team is on athletic scholarship. They may have scholarships, but in subjects most of us would avoid like the bubonic plague. Contrast that against Kentucky, a team (fittingly) full of thoroughbreds that could probably beat the New Jersey Nets in their present state. John Wall & DeMarcus Cousins will be in the NBA sooner, rather than later & would probably be wise to trade contact info after the game & find someone to manage their money for them. Kentucky could be susceptible to an experienced, veteran laden team because their coach doesn’t have their full respect, but it won’t be the Big Red.