Issue # 3.1.2 “ZOT! ZOT! ZOT!”


Friday, March 22, 2019 
Issue # 3.1.2 “ZOT! ZOT! ZOT!

5 tied for first as three go 15-1 despite 8 upsets

UC Irvine Anteaters

GOLETA/CERRITOS, CA (smt)- The lone local team, #13S-UC Irvine, rallied with a 17-4 run to put away #4S-Kansas St to reach the Round of 32.  UCI was just one of 8 upsets on the day with #12S-Oregon, #9S-Oklahoma, #9MW-Washington (and their relentless defense), and #9E-Central Florida (with great name and player Tacko Fall) winning comfortably and #10S-Iowa (over hometown crowd #7S-Ciincy), #12E-Liberty, and #11MW-Ohio St pulled out close wins.  #1 seeds struggled with infamous #1S-Viriginia going down 30-16 to #16S-Gardner-Webb, but the difference from last year to this year is that De’Anndre Hunter wasn’t injured and scored 23 points in helping rally from a 5-point halftime deficit with a 25-5 run to start the 2nd half.  #1MW-UNC also was down 5 at the half to #16MW-Iona but broke from halftime on a 25-7 run to win easily.  #1E-Duke fell behind by 7 early to #16E-North Dakota St before scoring 54 points in the 2nd half.  #3W-Texas Tech, #6W-Buffalo, #3MW-Houston, and #4E-Virginia Tech won easily but #2S-Tennessee trailed 52-50 but held on to win by 7. 

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Issue # 1.0.1 “The Silver Age of Brackets”


Monday, March 18, 2019  **HELP support Boys & Girls Clubs of America (deadline Tue 3:40 pm PDT **

Our 25th year offers a consistent experience, unlike the new NCAA Evaluation Tool

Seed List

CERRITOS/SANTA BARBARA, CA (smt)- The Big Ten got 8 teams in but it was the ACC who was king as #1E-Duke (with sensation Zion (Williamson)), #1S-Virginia, and #1MW-North Carolina (record 17th #1 seed) got the top three #1 seeds.  #1W-Gonzaga, despite losing to #11S-St. Mary’s in the WCC final, got the last #1 seed.  The Cavs are back as a #1 seed a year after becoming the first team to lose to a #16 seed (no UMBC in sight this year).  The top 32 ranked teams in the new NCAA Evaluation Tool (NET) made the tourney but so did NET73 St. John’s while NET33 NC State did not.  #12S-Oregon’s upset of #9MW-Washington in the Pac 12 final likely sent UNC Greensboro (60NET) home.  The ACC and SEC got 7 teams in with the Big 12 (6), AAC (4), Big East (4), and Pac 12 (3) getting at least three teams.  The mid-majors managed to snag seven at-large bids (including the AAC’s 3) and almost a eighth (the aforementioned UNCG) in a nice change of pace.  Somehow #9S-Oklahoma (7-12) and #11MW-Ohio St. (9-13) made the tourney with horrible losing conference records.  No sign of UCLA or USC but the #13S-Anteaters of UC-Irvine made it to be our only local team, their 2nd appearance after making it in 2015 also as a 13 seed and nearly knocking off Louisville.  #2E-Michigan St and #2W-Michigan (with the Spartans beating the Wolverines 3 times in 15 days) were both shipped to Hartford but Michigan St got Duke’s region due to the fact the regional (Washington DC) is much closer than their normal position as 5th seed in the West (Anaheim).  #7S-Cincy gets to play in the same state (Columbus) with #4MW-Kansas hoping to make the regional in Kansas City.  Streaking MW-Auburn who beat #2S-Tennessee for their first SEC title in 34 years only earned a 5 seed.

Wow, the Selection show brought back memories of a simpler time when all picks were done in just over a half-hour, none of this NBA analyst nonsense of last year,  none of the leaked brackets of the past, none of the dragging out the picks over an hour.   And back on CBS where it belongs.

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Local Representation

SDGST CPOLYUCLASouthern California will have 3 teams in the tourney, though none will be the University of Southern California, who despite the hot coach with the hot wife, finished last in the Pac 12.  But their rival, UCLA, will be in the tourney after beating #4 Arizona for the conference championship.  The Pac 12 won’t get any respect though, so don’t expect UCLA to be ranked too high.

And in the biggest surprise of the conference championships, Cal Poly San Luis Obsipo (SLO) began the tourney 10-19 and proceeded to rout #2 Santa Barbara,  upset #1 UC Irvine (my wife’s alma mater who was also trying to make the NCAA tourney for the 1st time ever), and outlast Cal State Northridge in the Big West final.  Their first-ever appearance in the NCAA tourney, they are a shoo in for the First Four, so they probably won’t make the proper 64.

Finally, despite losing in the Mountain West final, San Diego St. will be in the tourney.  So three local teams aren’t bad.  But I am not picking Cal Poly SLO if they somehow did make it the proper 64!

Five Will Try

CSTCAR MERCERThis is our 20th year and we have had 256 teams make the tournament (the proper 64) during that time.  So far, Coastal Carolina and Mercer will add to that total, meaning every year we had at least one new team in the tourney.  In 2011, if it weren’t for Northern Colorado, we would’ve been blanked.  There were quite a few teams trying to make our pool for the first time at the start of last week but several, including #1 seeds (such as UC Irvine… poor Anteaters) have failed.  Today (Saturday), five teams (Stony Brook, Cal Poly SLO, LA Tech, Toledo, and NC Central) are hoping to win their conference championship and earn a bid into the tourney.  Pretty exciting.  Stony Brook and LA Tech start at 8:30 am PDT.  Local (relatively) team Cal Poly SLO, a #7 seed who beat the Anteaters, will play at 7:30 pm PDT.  Also, previously ranked SMU will likely make the field for the first time since 1993 adding to our total.

Poor Anteaters

Well, UC-Irvine had a chance to make the tourney for the first time but came out short (literally on their late 3-pt attempts).  And the big UC, UCLA lost in the Pac 12 Championship.  San Diego St. may be the only other SoCal team with a chance to make the tourney.  Brackets start to come out at 3 pm PDT (you can add this to your calendar).  We hope to get the online entry done by Monday morning, though in the past we’ve snuck it in before midnight Sunday.  Check often.  Please follow us (@HWCI_Pools) and use #hwcincaa for any tweets and for the latest quick (intra-day) updates.  The initial email has been sent out so if you didn’t get one, please let us know.  Everything is the same as before – $10/entry (up to 3 entries) with a Thursday 9 a.m. PDT deadline.