Random thoughts on Brackettville

Random thoughts on several weeks of great hoops entertainment.

Apparently, winning a league regular-season championship isn’t a key indicator of Final Four potential. Yes, Butler did tie for the Horizon League title with two other schools. But, VCU placed third in the Colonial, Kentucky had the fourth-best record in the SEC and UConn tied for ninth in the Big East. Good regular-season marks generally lead to good seeds. But, the 2011 tournament showed that tourney seeds are great on Selection Sunday and useless, thereafter.

The criticism about VCU’s inclusion in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament  field was overwhelming. I joined that chorus because it was hard to accept Colorado’s snub. It would appear that the Rams used the criticism pretty effectively in winning FIVE games – including its "First Four" game – to make the "Final Four". Colorado made the final four as well, but it was in the NIT.

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Connecticut played in a BCS bowl game last fall, advanced to the Men’s Basketball Final Four last weekend and awaits Tuesday’s women’s basketball game and another possible Final Four berth. An amazing performance by the Huskies. Kemba Walker, Maya Moore and Big East football MVP Jordan Todman got many of the headlines this year. The trio reminds me of Oklahoma’s Blake Griffin, Courtney Paris and Sam Bradford in 2008-09.

ESPN.com’s NCAA Tournament bracket game generated more than 5.9 million entries this year. That is more people than live in Denmark and Finland. The percentage of people who predicted the Final Four schools are as follows: Kentucky (3.3%), UConn (9.3%), Butler (0.2%) and VCU (0%). That unpredictability is what creates the buzz every spring.

Reader feedback is welcome at 2minutetimeout@iastate.edu. You can also follow me on Twitter at: twitter.com/SteveMalchow

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