NCAA Tournament Day 2 blog: Bracket-filler reactions and analysis

Published: Friday, March 22 2013 10:50 a.m. MDT

Maybe that's what I'll tell my bracket if it's ever able to claw its way back. But really, at this point, there's little hope. We're a day and a half in, and two of my final four teams are out.


Matt (3:30 p.m.): The last 60 seconds provided two of the worst game-saving shot attempts I've ever seen. A fading, double-teamed 3-pointer (Cincinnatti) and a floater from behind the backboard (Kansas State)? Pure panic mode.

That's probably the only time another position in another sport deals with the pressure of a quarterback in football. You desperately hope the guard makes the right decision, that he'll look up as the seconds are winding down and see the guy wide open in the corner (which Cincy didn't), or at the very least, reset and look for another way (KSU didn't).

Instead the other four guys for each team watched, called for the ball in vain, and in the end, weren't even considered as an option to save their respective teams' season.

Which is really sad, since the two losing teams had a combined 23 seconds left to work with.

That and I picked both of them to win. Awesome.

Matt (3:05 p.m.): We're in channel-flipping mode as KSU has obliterated La Salle's 19-point lead and Cincy-Creighton is down to the wire. Impressive if Creighton wins despite Bearcats getting (as of right now) 16 more field goal attempts. Yet another example of small-ball winning out

I still think McDermott's going to need A) to raise his game another gears and/or B) get more help if the Bluejays want a deep run.

Oh, and La Salle gets an A+ for impersonating Wisconsin's let's-fall-in-love-with-the-three strategy to give away the game.

Matt (2:45 p.m.): K-State's comeback explained: after Southwell's 3-pointer to open the half, all their points have come from layups, dunks and free throws. True story.

Meanwhile La Salle started the half chucking threes, missed, let it get to their heads and started missing some bunnies.

These emotional swings are why I've got Louisville taking the whole thing. Their pressure defense gets opponents doubting themselves, passes, shot selection, everything. The Tournament is a mental rollercoaster, and nobody can adjust the controls of the opposing team like Lousiville can.

Landon (2:29 p.m.): Wow. Harvey here in the office coached your rec league hoops team when you were five? Harvey looks a lot younger than you suggest he is... Oh, different Harvey. I get it now.

This tournament for Harvey here at work is definitely Candyland. Have you seen this guy? He's been bouncing off the walls all morning long. ... And we're the sports guys. Maybe I should focus a little more on work or he may become the sports content manager before long.

Oh yeah... This tournament is my work.

As if on cue, Kansas State is coming back a little. They've got it to within 12 with 15 minutes left. Hopefully they can pull this one out a la Marquette yesterday, except hopefully they go on a 30-2 run, leaving no doubt that I knew what I was talking about when I picked them.

Matt (2:15 p.m.): Harvey's the rec league hoops coach I had when I was five. Made you feel like a stud even if you only played two minutes. Always roots for the little engine that (maybe) can. This year's Tournament is Candyland for him.

This La Salle game isn't the fluke the seeds make it seem. They shoot 45 percent as a team (including 37.6 percent from deep). They've got four guys averaging double figures in scoring. They can ball.

The general thinking, of course, was KSU could ball too. They've got a true point guard and they can rebound better.

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