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  • Issue # 12.4.4 “Revenge of the Blue Bloods” (4/1)

    Posted on April 1st, 2022 - 4:43 pm Scott No comments

    Archive

    International Rescue Committee - Ukraine Crisis
    2022 NCAA FINAL FOUR @ New Orleans, Louisiana

    6th Final Four (’82, ’87, ’93, ’03 (Louisiana Superdome); ’12 (Mercedes-Benz Superdome))
     –  
    Hosted by Tulane U. (American Athletic Conf) (2nd Final Four) & U. of New Orleans (Southland Conf) (2nd Final Four)
     – The Floor
    First SemifinalSecond Semifinal
    #2-South

    San Antonio, Texas (6th Regional)

    Hosted by U. of Texas at San Antonio (Conf USA) (6th Regional)
    #1-Midwest

    Chicago, Illinois (4th Regional)

    Hosted by Northwestern U. (Big Ten) (1st Regional)
    #2-West

    San Francisco, California (3rd Regional)

    Hosted by Pac-12 Conf (2nd Regional)
    #8-East

    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (5th Regional)

    Hosted by U. of Pennsylvania (Ivy League) (6th Regional)
    Villanova University Wildcats (30-7)University of Kansas Jayhawks (32-6)Duke University Blue Devils (32-6)University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Tar Heels (28-9)
    Big East Conference (2nd Place) – Tourney Champs
    Villanova, Pennsylvania

    7th Final Four (’39, ‘71, ’85, ’09, ’16’18)
    def #15 Delaware 80-60
    #7 Ohio State 71-61
    #11 Michigan 63-55
    #5 Houston 50-44
    Big 12 Conference – Regular Season and Tourney Champs
    Lawrence, Kansas

    16th Final Four (’40’52’53’57, ’71, ’74, 86, ’88’91, ’93, ’02, ’03’08, ‘12, ’18)
    def #16a Texas Southern 83-56
    #9 Creighton 79-72
    #4 Providence 66-61
    #10 Miami of Florida 76-50
    Atlantic Coast Conference – Regular Season Champs
    Durham, North Carolina

    17th Final Four (’63, ‘64, ’66, ’78, ‘86, ’88, ’89, ‘90’91, ‘92, ‘94’99, ‘01, ’04, ‘10’15)
    def #15 Cal State Fullerton 78-61
    #7 Michigan State 85-76
    #3 Texas Tech 78-73
    #4 Arkansas 78-69
    Atlantic Coast Conference (2nd Place)
    Chapel Hill, North Carolina

    21st Final Four (’46, ‘57, ’67, ’68, ’69, ’72, ’77’81’82, ’91, ’93, ’95, ’97, ’98, ’00, ’05, ’08, ’09’16, ‘17)
    def #9 Marquette 95-63
    #1 Baylor 93-86 (OT)
    #4 UCLA 73-66
    #15 Saint Peter’s 69-49

    Friday, April 1, 2022 **NO APRIL FOOL’S JOKE HERE**


    THE ELITE TAKE OVER THE FINAL FOUR
    At least $1,366 will be donated to IRC; over $3,097 donated over 12 years

    Nothing to see in the West

    WATCHING USMNT GET DRAWN INTO ENGLAND’S GROUP, CA (smt) – While it was nice to see some fresh blood in the Final Four the past two years (Baylor & Houston’s 1st trip since before ’85, the Zags 2nd, blue-blood UCLA’s first since ’08 last year and Texas Tech & Auburn’s 1st ever, Virginia’s 3rd (and first since ’84), Michigan St’s first since ’15 in ’19), three blue bloods are back with three-time champion Villanova tagging along.  Combined, the four teams have 61 Final Fours (the previous 2 tourneys had only a combined 41 with 19 of them belonging to UCLA).  While not a blue blood in the traditional sense, Villanova has won 2 of the past 5 titles and are in their 3rd FF in six tourneys.  The top-heavy Final Four makes you forget about St. Peter’s, Providence, Miami, Iowa St and even Gonzaga and Arizona.  Remember them?  Remember the West Coast power?  Nope, it’s Kansas and three teams who you can barely see on the map on the East Coast.

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  • First Four Underway, Deadline Thursday

    Posted on March 15th, 2022 - 11:02 pm Scott No comments

    The tournament is done with its first day with #16aMW-Texas Southern and #12E-Indiana using late strong runs to advance to the proper 64. Whereas last year the Big Ten lost in the First Four (portending what turned out to be a dismal 8-9 record), the first of 2 Big Ten teams in the First Four was successful. #11W-Rutgers plays tomorrow.

    We got 22 entries in our 12th HWCI First Four for Charity and 10 got both games correct. With the relative large margins of victory by both teams, Scott D still nailed the Indiana win by 8 exactly and leads with a 4 pt differential. Three went 0-2 with Michael W last with a 27 pt diff. Greg J was 20 pts off of Texas Southern’s 9 pt win.

    While we were just short of hitting the 25 entries and triggering a $25 bonus, I’ll still be donating $44 to International Rescue Committee. And if we hit 178 total entries in the pool, another $25 could be donated. But thanks to at least Tom J (last year’s HWCI Euro winnings plus additional tip), Greg P, Ken B, Vi P, Annie F, Spencer T, Ava T, and Linh T, about another $279 will be donated. With my company match, that will blow past the record $460 donated to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America in 2018. Thank you all!

    We have 57 entries with an hour left in the day. While we got a record 35 on Monday, the 22 today is our lowest since 19 in 2013 (at least 26 each year since). But still a lot of time and remember the deadline is Thursday at 9 am PDT.

  • Issue # 1.0.1 “Back to Normal?” (3/13)

    Posted on March 13th, 2022 - 11:11 pm Scott No comments

    Archive

    International Rescue Committee - Crisis in Ukraine

    Sunday, March 13, 2022  **HELP support Ukrainian refugees via International Rescue Committee (deadline Tue 4:00 pm PDT **)

    BLUE BLOODS BACK, ZAGS #1 OVERALL AGAIN
    Our 27th pool is as normal as it gets – same fee, same rules, same heartbreak

    NO SCHOOL MASK MANDATE AS OF MARCH 12, CA (smt) – After a year where we didn’t see any blue bloods in the top 8 seeds (with  Duke, Indiana, and Kentucky not even qualifying and only Kansas seeded 7 or better) with the likes of Illinois, Baylor, Houston, Alabama, and Iowa breaking through, this year the blue bloods are out for vengeance with #2W-Duke, #1MW-Kansas, and #2E-Kentucky among the favorites to win it all with #4E-UCLA, #8E-UNC, and #12bE-Indiana also joining the fun.  No longer confined to a single city and partial crowds, the NCAA returns to normal with full capacity crowds across 14 cities and optional masking (though testing before travel is still required).  Just one game (VCU had to forfeit against Oregon) was a no-contest and produced a first-time winner in Baylor.

    #1W-Gonzaga repeated as the #1 overall seed (5th time as a 1 seed, third straight (would’ve been 4 if ’20 wasn’t cancelled)) with S-Arizona (who was ineligible last year due to a self-ban), Kansas, and E-Baylor also netting #1 seeds.  This was only the 2nd time two #1 seeds heralded from the Western USA (’00 with Zona and Stanford) and all four are not in the Eastern Time Zone (btw, Happy Daylight Savings).  The Big 12 got two #1 seeds for the first time since ’03 (OK and TX).  The three local teams were spread across regions with #7-USC in the Midwest and #15-Cal State Fullerton in the West.

    Bubble team #11E-Virginia Tech not only played spoiler denying Coach K a 16th ACC title in his final year but also likely knocked Oklahoma to last out, by winning 13 of its last 15 games, including 4 in 4 days in the ACC tourney.  #12MW-Richmond’s upset of #10W-Davidson today knocked Dayton out of the tourney (who could have played on their home floor in the First Four).  But somehow #11S-Michigan not only snuck in but avoided the First Four.

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  • 12th HWCI NCAA First Four for Charity (Due 4 pm PDT Tuesday)

    Posted on March 13th, 2022 - 9:47 pm Scott No comments
    Help Ukrainian families displaced by the war.

    While you decide who will win the tourney, for the 11th year I’m doing the HWCI NCAA First Four for Charity, where I will donate $2 per entry to a charity (and if we get more than 25 responses, I’ll chip in an additional $25), this year to the International Rescue Committee, who are providing urgent support to people forced from their homes by the Russian invasion of Ukraine as well as other crises around the world.  The IRC is consistently awarded top marks by charity watchdog groups and my company will also match the donation. The unfortunate timing of the invasion mirrors our past two years dealing with COVID-19 and our first year responding to the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami disaster (2011). Hopefully next year we can pick a non-disaster response charity!

    This First Four for Charity is free and you just have to submit (you can comment on this post to enter, email, post to Facebook, tweet @HWCI_Pools) who the four First Four winners will be and by what point margin. The First Four games:

    • Texas Southern vs Texas A&M Corpus Christi
    • Wyoming vs Indiana
    • Wright St vs Bryant
    • Rutgers vs Notre Dame

    For example: Texas So by 3 points, Wyoming by 2, Bryant by 1, and Notre Dame by 5. Get your entry by 4 pm PDT Thursday.  As a bonus, in the end, if we top our record of 178 entries this year, I’ll donate an additional $25.  Also, invite your friends and people can enter (since it’s free) this charity contest but not our main pool. Last year, we donated with my company match $248 to the Center of Disaster Philanthropy.

    My picks: TXSO by 3, Wyoming by 2, Bryant by 1, and Rutgers by 5.