Let’s talk Final Four basketball…or more to the point…let me just give you my opinion since this, being my blog, I get to do that. 🙂

For the first time since team seeding began in 1979 (how we spent 40 years without seeds, I’ll never know), all four Final Four teams are #1 seeds. Does this mean the selection committee got it right for the first time in history? I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say, “NO!” In the past, more often than not, if a #1 seed doesn’t win the tournament, the team that does win (regardless of their seeding) probably didn’t ever deserve a #1 seed based on their overall season performance. In fact, this year, I’m pretty sure some people could have made an argument for Tennessee or Georgetown being #1 seeds. They would have been laughed out of the board room, but they could have made the argument.

In any case, here we are. There’s a first time for everything, and this year is one of those times.  We get the pleasure of seeing free throw hatin’/street-ball playin’ Memphis duke it out with classically trained/basketball clinic UCLA. And then, we get to see monkey off their backs/out for revenge Kansas tackle defense-lacking/ice water veined offense UNC.

(Side Note: Before I go on, let me just address this. Roy Williams is NOT playing his former team. Bill Self is not playing Roy Williams. None of the Kansas players are any of Roy’s recruits. This is Bill’s team. And any Kansas fan who still begrudges Roy Williams for returning to his ALMA MATER needs to take a step back and perhaps consider a little humility. Roy turned down UNC and Dean Smith once to stay at Kansas.  He gave all he had to Kansas for 15 years.  But, if you honestly think there is any person in this world who was coached or employed by Dean Smith who can turn him down twice, then you have no idea the amount of respect those people have for Dean Smith. So, Roy returned to North Carolina, and aside from coaching it gave him the opportunity to spend time with his dying father and sister. That cannot be replaced. So…do me a favor, GET OVER IT and pull for your Kansas Jayhawks because they’re your team and you love them NO MATTER WHO THE HEAD COACH IS!)

I gotta say, I have no earthly idea who is going to win out, but what I do know is that getting to the Final Four in my opinion ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. All my life, I’ve heard about how great it is to make it to a Final Four. Having never been an athlete, I can’t really argue with an actual participant’s experience, but what I want to ask every athlete who has ever made it to the Final Four is why is it so dadgum special when you haven’t won a darn thing? Let’s ask Antawn Jamison and Vince Carter if they would have taken the National Championship over losing in the Final Four. Or let’s ask the UCLA players from the previous two years how they feel about the Final Four versus the National Championship. I just don’t get why it’s so special to get there.

Try this little bit of trivia: Without looking it up, how many Final Four teams can you name from the last 5 years? George Mason, Florida, and UCLA don’t count because, well, duh!.  Can’t come up with many, can you?  Me, either.  I can name the Final Four from 2005 but only because I have it on a t-shirt.

So here we are…4 teams, 3 games, 1 champion.  Who’s going home with the hardware and the prestige?


About Leann

Lazy Pancreas Owner. TV/Movie/Theatre Junkie. Sports Fanatic. Peyton Manning Expert. Alabama Graduate. Car Karaoke Performer. Believer In Love. Come along for the ride.

Posted on April 2008, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. The committee normally does a good job with the top seeds. That’s the easiest part of the selection. My thinking is that it’s just coincidence that the first major dropoff was after the top four. There usually is a dropoff somewhere, but this time it happened to be after 4 teams. Add to that Tennessee and G-town getting knocked out early, and I don’t think it’s so surprising.

    I don’t get the whole Roy Williams thing. Kansas won it in ’88, before he got there, then promptly started underachieving when he showed up, despite being loaded every year. It’s true he skipped town right on the heels of the Hinrich/Collison/Gooden era, but it’s not like Kansas didn’t have plenty of good players coming in. Besides, from what anyone can tell, Bill Self is just as good a coach as Williams.

    I could name quite a few recent final four teams, as well as some not so recent ones. I think the final four is bigger for a school like Mason than it is for UCLA or North Carolina.

  2. Actually, in 1988 he took over a team that was immediately put on probation for NCAA violations under the previous coaching staff. But during his tenure he did manage to take them to 4 Final Fours and 2 championship games as well as become the winningest active coach by win percentage. But that’s beside the point.

    People make the same argument about Dean Smith…that if he was such a great coach how come he only won the championship twice. Well…let’s see…only one team gets to be the champion every year. Odds aren’t exactly in one team’s favor. They forget how much work and quite frankly, luck it takes to win a championship. Great players or not.

    But don’t get me started because Roy and Dean are two people that in my eyes can do no wrong.

    And I greatly take offense to your “Skipped Town” comment.

  3. Weren’t you the one who just wrote how the final four was no big deal? And even with all the final four appearances, they still had a lot of underachieving years. Ok, skipped town was a little harsh, but it did look a lot like he was hanging around until that class left. Not that it makes that big a deal, no team is immune from coaching changes, and they shouldn’t expect to be, so you’re right, Kansas shouldn’t be upset.

  4. If people are judging the kind of coach Roy is, they’re going to use factors considered important in the rest of the world not the factors in Leann’s world. So, yes I did give you his final four stats. Though that will never be the reason I believe he’s one of the best coaches to ever coach the college game.

    As far as Roy leaving after the Hinrich et al era, I think you’re giving Roy a heck of a lot of credit or at least the ability to see the future. He must have known that saying no to UNC the first time would bring them back a few years later with the same offer. Because he must have known that Doherty was going to tank the program and they were going to fire him and need Roy to come then. Perhaps we should ask him who’s going to win on April 7th cause he’s downright psychic. No. He came because Dean Smith went to him personally and asked him to come.

    What people don’t know unless they’re like me who watches all of Roy’s press conferences, you don’t know how many coaching jobs in college and the NBA he turned down during his 15 years at Kansas because he said the only place he would ever leave Kansas for was UNC.

    In any case, this argument at least for me is over because #1 I promised myself I wouldn’t read any articles this week about Roy and Kansas and by writing what I wrote I broke my promise to myself and #2 because I’m tired of feeling like I have to defend people that have enough clout not to need defending.

    On a different note, I find it interesting that we always argue on my blog but never in person.

  5. Ok, I’m done.

    I know for me it’s sometimes easier to talk online, especially when it involves arguing. The little filter in my head isn’t as strong when I’m looking at the computer as it is when I’m actually face to face with someone, so I tend to throw things out there for the sake of argument when in person I would probably consider it a little more carefully.

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