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NCAA TOURNAMENT

Daily Dribble | Message Board  | Adam Stanco Archive

By Adam Stanco

basketballwriter@cs.com

March 18th, 2005

 

NCAA Tournament: First Round Randomness

 

Jermaine Wallace’s game-winning three-pointer to beat Iowa was easily the best shot in the first round and could possibly be the most memorable shot of the tournament. But the most memorable moment of the first round took place five minutes after Albany lost to UConn. Albany played brilliantly and passionately and, despite the loss, every fan in Philadelphia was literally singing their praises long after the final buzzer …

 

On the topic of UConn, Marcus Williams is clearly the leader of the Huskies. Rudy Gay might be a number one draft pick, but Williams always ends up taking the big shots. He’s probably the best point guard in college basketball…

 

They are awful defensively and Derek Raivio needs to shoot the ball better, but Adam Morrison just will not allow Gonzaga to lose…

 

LSU’s Tyrus Thomas played 19 minutes against Iona, yet still managed to rack up nine points, eight rebounds, and three blocks. Glen “Big Baby” Davis had 22 points, 13 rebounds, and six blocks. Incredibly, Thomas is just a freshman and Davis is just a sophomore…

 

Call him overrated or call him underrated, but Gerry McNamara won’t be forgotten in Syracuse (or Scranton) for a very, very long time…

 

Monmouth coach Dave Holloway set-up the perfect game-plan for stopping Villanova’s four-guard offense and his kids had no sweat left after pushing so hard on the defensive end. But their offense during the first ten minutes of the game was the worst I’ve ever seen in the NCAA Tournament…

 

Think Jim Nantz and Billy Packer are re-thinking their arguments against the mid-majors? Wichita State decimated a Big East team and Bradley knocked off Kansas. No one with a straight face can still rip the MVC…

 

As I pointed out in the March Manifesto, inexperience is a killer in the tourney. That said, Kansas is going to be awesome next season…

 

Its too bad Pacific couldn’t pull off the upset over Boston College. Christian Maraker is an outstanding player and no one outside of the UOP campus is going to remember him.

 

Speaking of anonymous stars, the only people who know about BC center Shaun Williams are NBA scouts and all the people who watched the second overtime of the Pacific-BC game …

 

The 34-point outburst by Nevada guard Marcelus Kemp against Montana was the most underappreciated performance of the first round. That’s because Montana won the game and Nevada’s Nick Fazekas is the only national name on the team. But even to those in the WAC, Kemp’s numbers were unexpected. He only scored 20 points three times in the Wolfpack’s previous 20 games…

 

Jordan Farmar and Aaron Afflalo make up the best backcourt in the tournament, but the best player on the floor when UCLA crushed Belmont was freshman forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. That’s scary news to everyone else in the Oakland Regional…

 

The Tennessee-Winthrop game looked really ugly on the surface. And while it wasn’t pretty from an offensive standpoint, both teams gave everything they had on the defensive end…

 

Two years ago, Kentucky was the region’s top seed and lost to a ninth-seeded UAB team. Yet the Wildcats somehow managed to beat this year’s ninth-seeded Blazers after Kentucky had one of their most disappointing seasons in recent memory and entered the tournament as an eight-seed…

 

If you’re looking for a reason why George Mason beat Michigan State by ten, don’t blame it on the fact that Shannon Brown went 2-for 11. The Spartans got crushed on the boards and they didn’t defend, two of the staples of Tom Izzo-coached teams. Those are actually the same reasons Michigan State struggled throughout the season …

 

 

 

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