My Bracket = Epic Failure

I pride myself on being a knowledgeable College Basketball fan. I watch a lot of games. I keep up with lots of teams, even those of the mid-major variety. I feel like when I fill out a bracket that I’m making informed decisions based on observations gleaned throughout the season. You want to know what all of that got me? The massive failure posted above.

Saying this is the worst I’ve ever done on a bracket would be a disservice to any other bracket my e-fingers have filled out. This bracket has massacred my confidence on such a level that I may never bother bracketing again.

How bad is it, you ask? I got an astonishing 14 of 32 first round games wrong. Out of the actual Sweet 16, I only picked 7 teams correctly. Again, massive failure.

Oh well… On the bright-side, my Cats have looked dominant so far and the odds on favorite to win it all got Farokhmaneshed. Should they manage to win the National Title, I may be able to put this all behind me and move on. Maybe…

Luke Warm Linkage

FUBAR, Dick. Very FUBAR.

Elitist Jerk Bracket Challenge

Want to find out how much your favorite EJSIC contributors know about college hoops?  Check out our predictions based on unbridled homerism and sheer guesswork more than a combined century of thoughtfully observing NCAA tournament action.  Special thanks to our good friends at CBS for hosting our bracket contest.  We look forward to lending our expertise to  Jim, Clark, Greg, and Seth…just as soon as they return our calls.

Without further ado, let’s get right into the picks.

Flop Floppenhauffer

National Champion: Kansas
After much deliberation, I managed to suppress my inherent homerism and picked Kansas to win the title. While I do think my beloved  Wildcats have more pure talent on their roster than the Jayhawks, I have to concede that Kansas has the better collective team heading  into the tournament. They have more experience and more quality depth  than Kentucky and they shoot the ball well enough to give Syracuse and  other Big East teams fits. It’s chalk for sure, but it feels like a  (rock) chalky kind of year.

See Flop’s bracket here.

Peno Noir

National Champion: Kansas

Am I biased? Maybe. But it’s not rocket science. I went with a team who is strong at every position, experienced, and has a bench that is as deep as Jack Handey: Kansas. They’ll make it though arguably the toughest bracket on the way to their second National Championship in three years.

See Peno’s bracket here.

Karndogs

National Champion: Kansas

I picked Kansas to win because they are the best team in the nation.  I picked Duke to be in the finals because this is the weakest bracket in the history of ever, and I’m a homer.

See Karndogs’ bracket here.

Dafunk

National Champion: Kansas

Historically, I have done a horrible job making tournament picks.  This year, I used the EJSIC NCAA Tournament Flowchart to make my selections.

See Dafunk’s bracket here.

Small Arms McGee

National Champion: Syracuse

Being the Weakest Year Ever causes this to be perhaps the most  frustrating tournament I have ever tried to predict.  In the end, I chose Syracuse to cut down the nets in Indy because I think they have just the right combination of coaching, defense, length, athleticism, and altogether meaningless mascot.  I’m probably the only person alive who didn’t pick Cornell to beat Temple, and I can’t imagine too many folks have BYU in the Elite Eight or Wisconsin in the title game.  Am I a genius, or a moron?  You decide.  (But the correct answer is genius.)

See Small Arms McGee’s bracket here.

Vagabond Joe

National Champion: Kansas

Jameson’s Irish Whiskey + Aerosmith’s Sweet Emotion playing on a loop + A complex process that includes flipping a 1953 Sixpence and hucking a few darts at the wall + Planting a few subversive emails to undermine my competitors’ picks = Vagabond Joe’s Nearly Perfect Bracket.

See Vagabond Joe’s bracket here.

Jose Kortez

National Champion: West Virginia

Let’s be honest. This is the weakest year of college basketball since Oregon won the whole thing. I’ve been involved in YMCA events with more talent. I’m considering watching a dog show instead of the NCAA tournament this year. But all the same, it’s pretty obvious the Poodle is going to win that so there’s not much point in putting together a bracket.

That brings us back to the YMCA Tournament. The committee rubbed one all over Coach K, but it won’t help them any. This year’s tournament is Syracuse’s to lose. That said, I was a little worried about injuries. And no other team is good enough to get out of the elite eight.

So, that’s how this tournament should end. In a shameful tie.

But, because of some past behavioral issues that have the gods mighty riled with me, there will be one more painful weekend to this basketball season. The only good news is that West Virginia will be the last team standing.

See Jose’s bracket here.

Shred Torn

National Champion: Kansas

I’m not really going out on a limb picking Kansas to win the title, I acknowledge that. Usually I am the one who fantasizes the various ways in which the top teams can lose, rather than giving them appropriate credit. Kansas has proven that they’re the best team all season long. The other contenders are flawed in different ways. I think Kentucky got a tough break with potentially having to face either Wisconsin or Temple in the Sweet Sixteen and then likely West Virginia in a regional final. All of those teams play tough defense and have veteran players to knock off the Cats. Syracuse has a pretty good draw, but they haven’t inspired confidence lately. They’re the best contender to knock off Kansas, but that’s largely because of style of play and because they seem to have some sort of higher power working for them when they play the Jayhawks in recent years. Still, the Jayhawks have the ball in their court, and they’re a real slam dunk. HA-HA! So clever Shred…

See Shred Torn’s bracket here.

NoMore Toys

National Champion: Syracuse

I am grumpy and hate everything, except maybe bourbon and Bull Durham. There are a lot of things wrong with the sport of college basketball, but at least it IS a sport…just like NASCAR. Xavier is awesome and so is Kentucky sometimes.  But I’m picking Syracuse to win it all.

See Nomore Toys’ bracket here.

Al Kenmore

National Champion: Kansas

My original plan was not to do a bracket this year for two main reasons:

1) Gonzaga is in the tournament – again – and they have screwed up every bracket I’ve done since the 1999-2000 season. If I pick them to lose, they win. If I pick them to win, they lose. After 10 years of this, it’s geting tiresome.

2) The Tar Heels aren’t in the tournament. In years past, after Gonzaga bust my brackets and all the other ACC teams flamed out, I still had pulling for the Tar Heels to look forward to. Now I have nothing but a wrecked bracket to look forward to.

However, in the spirit of the EJSIC, I filled one out. I based my picks on what I could remember about the season before the Super Bowl, because that’s when I became unglued during the UNC downward spiral. I usually do pretty well when I don’t pay any attention to what anyone on ESPN, CBS, ABC, NPR or Yahoo Sports says about teams and go with my gut. There are certain teams whose coaches have much better Tourney resumes than they have season or conference resumes and I generally pick them to go far in the tournament. So, that’s why I have Louisville, Michigan State and Villanova all making it to the Sweet 16 or farther. It’s usually a safe bet that Duke won’t make it to the Elite 8. Everyone acts like this year is the first time that Duke’s been given a cakewalk, but this is not true. If they’re a number 2 seed, they usually have the easiest 15 seed and so on. In 2005, they were given a real gift and oops–no FF for them. Even though Syracuse is my bandwagon team, I think that Kansas is playing great basketball right now and should win it all pretty easily. Kentucky could falter before the final game, but I put them in it because a Self-Calipari rematch would be great. I don’t see Kentucky winning it all because I don’t think they’re disciplined enough. Kansas is disciplined and that’s why I think they’ll come out on top.

See Al Kenmore’s bracket here.

Michael Street

National Champion: Kansas

Last time I picked Kansas to win it all, they beat my soon-to-be alma mater in the national championship game with the help of missed free throws and a miracle by a man named Mario who isn’t a plumber. My team is out of it this season, so at least Rock Chalk won’t break my heart in April. I’m taking the Jayhawks to defeat West Virginia with a little less drama, 78-66.

See Michael Street’s bracket here.

Ttobbs3eb

National Champion: Kentucky

Like everyone else, I think Kansas is the best team in college basketball right now, just as they have been all year.  However, they have been overwhelmingly picked by experts to win it all, and I just can’t see it being so easy.  They are good, but not as complete or dominant as last year’s Tar Heels or the 2008 National Champion Jayhawks.

The other dirty little secret about Kansas is that they haven’t faced as elite of competition as some would have you believe.  They did own a good Kansas State team during the season, but got scares from out of conference foes Memphis and Cornell and lost to Tennessee and Oklahoma State.  I think they end up falling just short of the championship game when they run into a Syracuse squad who can frustrate them with zone.

Instead, I’m going with Kentucky who has become the most popular pick among the one seeds to miss the final four.  While everyone harps on their lack of experience the fact remains that they have a deep, talented frontcourt and the best point guard in the nation.  UK rides their talented freshman class with the help of the “nobody believes in us” factor all the way to Indianapolis and ends up cutting down the nets.  Lexington rejoices.  The rest of the nation keeps their fingers crossed for a recruiting violation.

See Tobbs’ bracket here.

The Sensei

National Champion: Wisconsin

Bold predictions are what I do.  Not only does my bracket guarantee a national championship for the Wisconsin Badgers, it also predicts an Elite Eight for Tennessee – something none of us thought we would live to see.

See The Sensei’s bracket here.

Aspiring Deadbeat Dad

National Champion: Georgetown

I feel confident that my picks have put me in a unique position to dominate these other EJSIC losers. I chose the Georgetown Hoyas to defeat Kansas State in the semifinals before defeating Kentucky in the championship game.  Greg Monroe is the key to this Georgetown team, and to the success of my bracket.

See Aspiring Deadbeat Dad’s bracket here.

Well, folks…that’s it for the predictions of our motley crew.

Check back after each round and see which Jerk emerges as truly Elite.

McGee’s Bracket Musings After a Decent Night’s Sleep

Greetings, Basketball Lovers!

I wanted to step back from the situation before posting my thoughts on the seedings and pairings for the 2010 NCAA Tournament.  You see, I was simply incredulous (and at times demonstrably angry) while watching Greg Gumbel and Clark Kellogg unveil the brackets.  My reaction was not due to Clark Kellogg’s disturbing orange tint, but really, what’s that about?

Anyway, here are a few items that jumped out at me last night:

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Flowcharting the 2010 NCAA Tournament

Want to dominate your office pool but don’t know a thing about college basketball?

This would be a great time to create water-cooler talk with the boss, wouldn’t it?

Well here at EJSIC, we’re here to provide exactly what the people want: below, you’ll find the key to winning your office pool, with the EJSIC 2010 NCAA Tournament flowchart.

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EJSIC @ the SEC tournament

That’s right. Yours truly has been dispatched to provide up-to-the-minute updates live from the site of the 2010 SEC tournament at the “whatever-they’re-calling-it-now-that-the -Sommet-Group-failed-to-make-payment Center” in Nashville, TN. EJSIC will be your first stop for the sights, sounds, and even smells (if I can find a way to capture them on my phone) of the 2010 installment of the UK Invitational.

To get things started, here are the 3 biggest story lines heading into the tournament, and the 3 things I’m looking forward to the most:

Tournament Story Lines:

1. Will the runaway-train that has been the 2009-10 version of the Kentucky Wildcats continue their resurgence with a tournament title? The obvious favorites going in to the event, it will be interesting to see if the C-A-T-S CATS CATS CATS will be able to continue to build on their 29-2 (14-2) record by capturing the tournament championship. THE most talented team in the country (IMO), the Cats have been dominant at home, but have proven to be shaky away from Rupp Arena, including losses at Tennessee and against the fightin’ Devon Downey’s, as well as close games against Vanderbilt, Mississippi State, and Auburn. It will be interesting to see how this freshman dominated team will perform in what will be the first college tournament situation for most.

Can anyone derail DeCuz and the UK crazy train?

All that said, make no mistake about it; Nashville will become Lexington south this weekend, just as it is whenever UK comes to town.

2. Bubbles bursting. It is my opinion that none of Florida, Ole Miss, and Mississippi State will make the Big Dance without a win in this tournament, and it is shaping up to be elimination Friday, with potential Tennessee/Ole Miss and Florida/Miss St matchups.

3. Who is SEC POY? The case for Devon Downey over either of John Wall or DeMarcus Cousins was a strong one after ‘lil Carolina’s upset of then #1 UK, but it has become increasingly difficult to ignore the team’s late season slide. However, Downey may have thrust himself back into consideration, after a 26 point performance last week at the dump that is Memorial Gym. With a deep tourney run, and perhaps another upset of Kentucky should they beat ‘Bama on Thursday, things could get interesting.

Things I’m Looking Forward To:

Bruce Pearl is a show unto himself.

1. Vandy fans. I was at the SEC/Sun Belt Classic in mid-December, which showcased MTSU vs. Tennessee and Vandy vs. Western Kentucky at the same venue as the SEC tournament. Vandy fans showed why they were the joke of the SEC by managing to attract **maybe** 200 fans to a game in their hometown. Meanwhile, WKU had 6-8 thousand, and were a raucous bunch. No one would have guessed they were the team 4-3 heading in and Vandy was the team nationally ranked. Well Vandy fans (or as I like to call them, “Alabama football fans“), here’s your chance to redeem yourselves. I don’t expect any more than 400 of you, so don’t disappoint me.

2. A live view of “Dermal Soul Glo I’ve heard stories, but I want to see for myself if Bruce really does glow.

3. Demarcus Cousins. I’ve been eagerly awaiting this ticking-time-bomb’s explosion all year. If this kid played in the ACC, he already would have been involved in brawls with Chas McFarland and Ryan Reid, and having the opposing fans get a hold of your phone number would be a weekly ordeal. But even in a league as physically flaccid as the SEC, Cousins has been driven to temper tantrums and dirty plays numerous times. If he’s gonna flip out, and he will eventually, I just want to be there to see it.

I’m also looking forward to some “pity” beers to be bought for me by those feeling sorry for me, in my North Carolina t-shirt, although I don’t expect Kentucky fans to be overly willing to support my cause…………..dafunk…………….out.

Got a question, an angle you’d like me to cover at the tourney, or some hate-filled garbage to spew???? Shoot me an email at dafunk.EJSIC@yahoo.com, and I’ll get back to ya ASAP.

Conference Championship Central

ESPN has dubbed the week of March 8th, Championship Week as countless college basketball conferences crown a champion. The winners receive an automatic bid to the upcoming NCAA Tournament. The following has a link to every conference tournament bracket as well as which team is the top seed and that teams current RPI from realtimerpi.com. Finally, it will include a list of all possible at-large teams from each conference.

America East
Bracket
Top Seed: Stony Brook 13-3, RPI 128
Possible at-large: None

Atlantic 10
Bracket
Top Seed: Temple (15)
Possible at-large: Xavier (19), Richmond (28), Rhode Island (30), and Dayton (42).

Atlantic Coast Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Duke (2)
Possible at-large: Maryland (20), Clemson (24), Wake Forest (34), Georgia Tech (35), Florida State (39), and Virginia Tech (55)

Atlantic Sun
Winner: East Tennessee State (125)
Possible at-large: None

Big XII
Bracket
Top Seed: Kansas (1)
Possible at-large: Kansas State (5), Baylor (10), Texas A&M (12), Texas (25), Oklahoma State (27), and Missouri (32)

Big East
Bracket
Top Seed: Syracuse (3)
Possible at-large: West Virginia (6), Villanova (7), Pittsburgh (9), Georgetown (14), Louisville (38), Marquette (48), UConn (50), Notre Dame (64), South Florida (67)

Big Sky
Bracket
Top Seed: Weber State (79)
Possible at-large: None

Big South
Winner: Winthrop (178)
Possible at-large: None

Big Ten
Bracket
Top Seed: Ohio State (29)
Possible at-large: Purdue (17), Michigan State (26), Wisconsin (18), Illinois (73), Minnesota (78)

Big West
Bracket
Top Seed: California-Santa Barbara (103)
Possible at-large: None

Colonial Athletic
Bracket
Top Seed: Old Dominion (37)
Possible at-large: William Mary (58)

Conference USA
Bracket
Top Seed: UTEP (44)
Possible at-large: UAB (41) and Memphis (51)

Horizon League
Bracket
Top Seed: Butler (17)
Possible at-large: None

Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Siena (40)
Possible at-large: None

Mid Eastern Athletic Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Morgan State (108)
Possible at-large: None

Mid-American Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Kent State (43)
Possible at-large: None

Missouri Valley
Winner: Northern Iowa (23)
Possible at-large: Wichita State (47)

Mountain West
Bracket
Top Seed: New Mexico (8)
Possible at-large: BYU (21), San Diego State (33), UNLV (45)

Northeast
Bracket
Top Seed: Quinnipiac (137)
Possible at-large: None

Ohio Valley
Winner: Murray State (62)
Possible at-large: None

Pac-10
Bracket
Top Seed: California (22)
Possible at-large: Washington (53) and Arizona State (54)

Patriot League
Bracket
Top Seed: Lehigh (162)
Possible at-large: None

SEC
Bracket
Top Seed: Kentucky (4)
Possible at-large: Vanderbilt (11), Tennessee (16), Florida (52), Mississippi (57), and Mississippi State (61)

Southern Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Wofford (78)
Possible at-large: None

Southland Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Sam Houston State (75)
Possible at-large: None

Southwestern Athletic Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Jackson State (197)
Possible at-large: None

Sun Belt
Bracket
Top Seed: Troy (120)
Possible at-large: None

The Summit League
Bracket
Top Seed: Oakland (60)
Possible at-large: None

Western Athletic Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Utah State (31)
Possible at-large: None

West Coast Conference
Bracket
Top Seed: Gonzaga (36)
Possible at-large: St. Mary’s (46)