Tag Archives: Final Four

Tuesday, March 22, 2016 – Bring Out the Pepto Bismal – The Upsets Bounce On

Tuesday, March 22, 2016 – Bring Out the Pepto Bismal – The Upsets Bounce On

It was a dismal Pepto Bismal night at Reed Arena last night as the Aggie Women’s Basketball team was scalped by the Florida State Seminoles. Have fun in Dallas, Noles and tell the Baylor women hello.

So ends a great season – good bye to the seniors and we look forward to next year’s team

But wait – the fat lady has not sung for The Fighting Texas Aggie Men’s team.

In the house last night was D. House.

House (800x450)

And Alex Caruso.

A. Caruso (800x450)


Wednesday, March 16,, 2016 – Me and My Brackets

Wednesday, March 16,, 2016 – Me and My Brackets

Our post today is brought to by the word Skullduggery – Skuhl-DUHG-uh-ree

It is a noun meaning:

  1. dishonorable proceedings, mean dishonest or trickery: bribery graft and other such skullduggery
  2. an instance of dishonest or deceitful behavior; trick

But enough about the presidential elections and the government.

Here is my completed bracket for the women’s NCAA Division I basketball tournament.

2016 Womens bracket (800x450)

Yep – got the Baptists and the Catholics in Championship Game – Baylor and Notre Dame. As you can see I have Baylor and Texas A&M playing in the Sweet 16. When these two teams play it is known as a “bitter rivalry.” I am sure Coach Mulkey and Coach Blair will show clips from 2011 and the infamous clock issue. Should A&M pull an upset, I will not talk to my family for a week.

“Just Say No to Four” is my mantra for UConn. The University of Connecticut is a basketball dynasty in any league and Briana Stewart (Stewie) is one of the greatest collegiate athletes you will see – male or female. Nevertheless, Here’s What I’m Thinking – the odds are against you to repeat as National Champions for a fourth time. And you know Mulkey and Muffet have teams that can beat you. The scenery only changes for the lead Huskie and it is time for a change. So I am going with the Bears and the Creepy Leprechauns.

But first on March 19 The Fighting Texas Aggie Women must BTHO Missouri State.

I also completed a Division I Men’s Basketball Bracket. I used the Penny method for selecting the Championship Game – my favorite colors, mascots, funny sounding names, etc. My major criterion was schools from which I have graduated. Therefore I have Texas A&M playing Stephen F. Austin for the National Championship. Gig ‘Em Aggies and Ax ‘Em Jacks!


Super Tuesday, March 1, 2016 – VOTE! March Comes in Like a Lion and Goes Out Like a Lamb. VOTE! Let the Madness Begin.

Super Tuesday, March 1, 2016 – VOTE! March Comes in Like a Lion and Goes Out Like a Lamb. VOTE! Let the Madness Begin.

We shall leave the political March madness and let it continue to run amok on its own social media course. Now, it is time for March Madness – COLLEGE BASKETBALL!!!

Get ready because I follow both men’s and women’s Division I NCAA college basketball. For the sports impaired – this is the sport with the big, round, brown ball that one bounces and tries to put through the tall pole with hoop attached to a net. Players wear uniforms that resemble underwear.

Here’s What I’m Thinking will be your handy guide to the bazillion DI college basketball games about to be played across the Sisterhood of ESPN. As in football, HWIT may or may not actually be about basketball.

Beginning Thursday (because tomorrow is Texas Independence Day – March 2 – a sacred day in the history of Texas) you can look forward to such insightful topics as:

  • The Teams
  • The Coaches
  • The Brackets
  • The Schedules
  • The Mascots – Really? Your school’s mascot is a spider (Richmond) or a blue hen (Delaware)?
  • CPR for Buzzer Beaters – Or Do Not Throw your Dammit Doll toward the TV or Do Not Through Your Computer Tablet Toward the TV while you are watching two games.
  • A Critique of the Announcers – Welcome to Brent Mushberger. Now, please go away.
  • Critique (read bitching) of ESPN for the Wrap Around in WBB
  • The Texas Aggies
  • The SEC Conference
  • The Baylor Bears
  • The Texas Longhorns
  • The Big 12 Conference
  • My favorite team is the women’s team playing UConn

And the most important one of all – Fashion – This will include, but not limited to:

  • players’ uniforms,
  • players’ footwear,
  • coaches’ ensembles
  • coaches’ footwear

Hair is a separate category – in basketball – it is all about the hair!

Texas Wesylan 11.1.15 (800x533)

Texas Aggie women v. Texas Wesylan 11.1.15 Photo by me

All of that and more. Let March Madness begin.

Sic ‘Em Lady Bears for winning the Big 12 Women’s Basketball Title last night.

Monday, March 16, 2015 – Got Your Men’s Bracket Completed?

Monday, March 16, 2015 – Got Your Men’s Bracket Completed?

Here are your teams for the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament and their school’s mascot. This is the Big Dance where if you can win your conference tournamanet you get to go the party with an automatic bid.  Everybody else gets the treasured invitation.  Draw a circle around every school you have never heard of before.  Then put a star by the teams with your favorite mascots.  Google to determine what exactly is a Jasper.

Complete your bracket and see how long your teams can continue to win.  Have fun and good luck.

Texas Southern Tigers

Hampton Pirates

Manhattan Jaspers

Lafayette Leopards

Robert Morris Colonials

Coast Carolina Chanticleers

North Dakota State Bison

North Florida Ospreys

UAB Blazers

Eastern Washington Eagles

UC Irvine Anteaters

Albany Great Danes

Northeastern Huskies

Wofford Terriers

Belmont Bruins

New Mexico State Aggies

Georgia State Panthers

Buffalo Bulls

Harvard Crimson

Valparaiso Crusaders

Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks

UCLA Bruins

LSU Tigers

Ole Miss Rebels

Wyoming Cowboys

Texas Longhorns

Indiana Hoosiers

Oklahoma State Cowboys

NC State Wolfpack

Cincinnati Bearcats

St. John’s Red Storm

Boise State Broncos

Georgia Bulldogs

Purdue Boilermakers

Dayton Flyers

VCU Rams

Xavier Musketeers

BYU Cougars

Iowa Hawkeyes

Ohio State Buckeyes

San Diego Aztecs

Davidson Wildcats

Oregon Ducks

Michigan State Spartans

Providence Friars

Butler Bulldogs

SMU Mustangs

Georgetown Hoyas

Arkansas Razorbacks

West Virginia Mountaineers

North Carolina Tar Heels

Baylor Bears

Maryland Terrapins

Utah Utes

Wichita State Shockers

North Iowa Panthers

Oklahoma Sooners

Iowa State Cyclones

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Louisville Cardinals

Kansas Jayhawks

Gonzaga Bulldogs

Villanova Wildcats

Arizona Wildcats

Wisconsin Badgers

Duke Blue Devils

Virginia Cavaliers

Kentucky Wildcats – just mark Big Blue as the Big Winner


March 16 – RIP – Jay and Molly. We miss you both.

Thursday, March 5, 2015 – March Madness – Part Three – The Bracket

Thursday, March 5, 2015 – The Bracket

A bracket is a tree diagram that represents a series of games played during a tournament. The bracket used for the NCAA college basketball tournaments is a single elimination bracket. There is no consolation for this tournament.  That means win or go home.  This type of bracket is also known as an Olympic system, or a knock out, or a sudden death.  My favorite is the single penetration name.  One does not see that name used often.

Completing a bracket leading to The Final Four has become an entity in and of itself. There are people whose profession is “Bracketologist.” They study a pseudo-science called bracketology.

There are 64 teams that will be selected to play in The Big Tournament or the NCAA tournament. Teams are “seeded” according to the number of wins and the level of the teams played.  The seedings of teams is done by a committee. Teams are placed into mini-brackets in certain regions.  Each mini-bracket feeds into the overall bracket.  Seeding of teams usually results in a lack of geographic awareness and some teams have to travel cross country, while others play in their own back yard or court as the case may be.

To play a tournament bracket is easy. One completes a bracket by predicting which team will win each game from the opening games or rounds to the final game.  In other words, you guess.  The time is called March Madness because an entire game, season and reputation can rest on an injury or illness, a foul that is called, a foul that is not called, a foul shot made, or a foul shot missed.  And of the course the worse is the dreaded buzzer beater when the big round brown ball is thrown toward the hoop with a last second heave and the ball goes through the 18 inch hoop and the team wins.

Completing a bracket is easy.  You really do not have to know anything about basketball. Here is an easy method for completing your bracket.

  1. Go to NCAA.com and download a copy of the bracket you wish to play. I like to play both men’s and women’s brackets. These will be available around Monday, March 16.
  2. Make several copies of the blank bracket. You will want to complete one. You will want to have one to keep track of who actually wins the games. And you will want another one when you rip yours faster than Oliver North when your team loses against a lesser opponent. See buzzer beater above.
  3. Then complete your bracket by selecting the teams you think will win and proceed through the bracket until they reach The Final Four and then pick the National Champion.

Here are several methods for choosing which teams will win and thus advance to the finals. These methods are equally and statistically valid in terms of probability and possibility and usually have similar results regardless of method used to predict winning teams.

How to select teams.  Select a team based on:

  1. The color of their uniforms,
  2. The most tattoos, (Note: this can be by player or by team.)
  3. The best, longest, and/or most creative tattoos,
  4. The school’s mascot. Note: One seldom sees live mascots at basketball games. I supposed a BEVO cleanup in the free throw area is not in the janitor’s contract,
  5. The players’ hairstyles. This includes men’s and women’s teams. Be sure to include west coast teams, whose hair colors were not originally intended for hair hues,
  6. By the coaches you like or dislike or what the coach wears,
  7. By the college you attended or graduated from or by the T-Shirt from Wal-Mart you wear if you had attended college,
  8. Actually do statistically analyses comparing won loss records and strength of schedule data,
  9. On the men’s bracket, predict Kentucky as the winner and work backwards,
  10. On the women’s bracket, predict UConn as the winner and work backwards.

Good luck and BTHO Auburn. (SEC Tournament – Lady Aggies vs. Auburn)

March 3 – March Madness Begins – A Basketball Primer

March 3 – March Madness Begins – A Basketball Primer

On Feb. 28, 1940, the first televised college basketball games were broadcast by New York City station W2XBS as Pittsburgh defeated Fordham, 57-37, and New York University beat Georgetown, 50-27, at Madison Square Garden. Get ready there are about to be a lot more broadcast as March Madness begins.

So to guide through this cultural phenomena, I give you: Basketball 101 or A Basketball Primer by Me

As in college football, I only write about teams I like and teams that play teams that I like. Oh yes, this is only about Division I schools.  There are two more divisions that do March Madness. Are you ready to tip off?

Another exciting season of March Madness approaches welcoming another college sport into the commercialization and marketing by ESPN and its sister networks. I wonder if Larry Culpepper from Dr.. Pepper will appear.

March Madness, also known as The Big Dance or The Final Four, is a series of basketball games played by NCAA basketball teams during the time frame between the end of college football and The Master’s Golf Tournament.  Let’s assume you know nothing about the game or just landed from outer space.  I know people who can fit into either category.

History of the Game

In early December 1891, the chairman of the physical education department at the School for Christian Workers (now Springfield College) in Springfield, Massachusetts, instructed physical education teacher James Naismith, known to many as the inventor of basketball, to invent a new game to entertain the school’s athletes in the winter season.

In Texas we think the game of basketball was invented to give people something to do when there was no football. The fact that it offered the PE teachers something to teach while it was cold as a witch in brass brassiere outside was also helpful.

Originally a player would try to toss an inflated, round ball into a wooden peach basket suspended from a hoop mounted to a pole about 10 feet off of the ground. When this task was accomplished, the school janitor would bring a ladder, climb up, retrieve the ball, return it to the player and remove the ladder until he was needed again.  I am not certain if there was a janitorial union intervention and this task was beyond his contractual responsibilities or what. But soon some brainiac thought to cut a hole in the bottom of the peach basket and the janitor was no longer needed.

Equipment Needed

The game is played with a large, inflated, round, brown ball. In the men’s college game, the ball is 29.5 inches in diameter.  In the women’s game the ball is 28.5 inches in diameter. One advances the ball by bouncing it down a flat, rectangular flat surface called a court. This bouncing of the ball is called dribbling.  One may also pass the ball to a team mate to advance the ball. The passing of the ball is called passing.

At either end of this court is a hoop that is 18 inches in diameter. This hoop is 10 feet off of the ground and mounted to a backboard.


The player must dribble the ball using only one hand and without stopping and then throw this big round ball through that 18 inch hoop on the pole.

The Rules

Google them.

The Players

The game can be played by men or women.  Sometimes, in the women’s game it is difficult to determine gender however. The game is played by two teams. There are five players on each team.  Each player has a number based on the position he or she plays.  Actually, the position played is usually based on level of skill sets and body types.

Point guard (often called the “1“): usually the fastest player on the team organizes the team’s offense by controlling the ball and making sure that it gets to the right player at the right time.

Shooting guard (the “2“): creates a high volume of shots on offense, mainly long-ranged; and guards the opponent’s best perimeter player on defense.

Small forward (the “3“): often primarily responsible for scoring points via cuts to the basket and dribble penetration; on defense seeks rebounds and steals, but sometimes plays more actively.

Power forward (the “4“): plays offensively often with their back to the basket; on defense, plays under the basket (in a zone defense) or against the opposing power forward (in man-to-man defense).

Center (the “5“): uses height and size to score (on offense), to protect the basket closely (on defense), or to rebound.

The Challenge

Now this sounds like a simple fun sport now, doesn’t it? I failed to mention at each position there is a seven foot giant, with an arm wing span like a small airplane, who has a vertical jump of 30 inches from a standing position, and is quicker than a New York pick pocket who trying to prevent you from putting the round ball into the hoop. It adds a bit more challenge to just tossing the ball into the modern peach bucket.

Go study for the assessment.  Tomorrow we look at What to Watch in a Basketball Game.