March Madness certainly has lived up to its name so far in 2016. There was insanity all around, SB Nation writer Ricky O’Donnell compiled a list of the The 10 craziest things from the opening week of the NCAA Tournament, it’s worth a look. There was a mix of upsets with a couple of the 12 vs 5 seed upset specials from UALR and Yale, a stunning 15 over 2 seed upset by Middle Tennessee over one of the Tournament favorites in Michigan State, a Northern Iowa half court buzzer beater, a furious 12 point comeback in the last 44 seconds by Texas A&M to send it to OT and that doesn’t even cover half of it. Here’s a nice video below by the NCAA recapping the sights and sounds of the opening rounds last week.
Following one of the greatest opening two rounds in NCAA Tournament history, the Sweet 16 is finally upon us! Here’s some interesting articles and notes I’ve come across the past few days as we head into the Sweet 16 and Elite 8 this weekend.
- Yahoo’s Jeff Eisenberg ranks the Sweet 16 matchups from most to least compelling. I agree with Jeff’s ranking of the North Carolina (1) vs. Indiana (5) game on Friday night as the top matchup. It’ll be a fun matchup to watch as both teams like to play fast and the game will come down to some key factors. A big key will be the frontcourt matchups as IU is not quite as deep or as big overall as UNC. If they can defend and keep the Tar Heels off the offensive boards (mainly Brice Johnson) they’ll have a good chance to get the ball out transition. I’ve watched a good amount of Indiana basketball this season and the past few years (my wife is an IU alumni). The Hoosiers are the most exciting team to watch in the country when they’re firing on all cylinders. Senior Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell is playing great basketball on both ends and will need a big game for Indiana to move on to the Elite 8.
- Sport Poster Swag had an interesting article showing off the Sweet 16 match-ups based on team posters created by each team’s marketing department. I tend to agree, the Oregon poster might be my favorite of the bunch along with Oklahoma’s poster focusing on star shooting guard Buddy Hield.
— Poster Swag (@SportPosterSwag) March 23, 2016
- ESPN’s Uni-Watch ranks the uniforms of Sweet 16 teams with the iconic UNC uniform taking the top spot. Although they put together an epic comeback last weekend vs. Northern Iowa, unfortunately Texas A&M receives the bottom spot in the rankings.
Which is the bigger miracle: the Aggies’ comeback against Northern Iowa or how bad their uniforms are? It’s Adidas’ standard March Madness template, complete with the shoulder harness and the cummerbund-style shorts, but the Aggies’ beveled type font makes it even worse.
- In the event your college basketball team has been knocked out early on in March Madness or in my case didn’t make the Tournament for the 4th straight year (but who’s counting, right?), ESPN Staff Writer Chantel Jennings published a fun article to help you find a team to root for in the Sweet 16. I agree with Chantel on the Indiana description, Coach Crean is all over the Indiana sideline during the game.
If you’re someone who can’t sit still while watching sport events … look no further than Tom Crean and the Indiana Hoosiers.
He is your spirit animal.
Everyone enjoy this next four days of the NCAA Tournament, it’s an exciting time with great basketball and before we know it we’ll be at the Final Four next week in Houston.