Thursday, March 18, 2010

March Madness

What an unbelievably ridiculously awesome day of college hoops. From Georgetown getting blown out by OH-IO, to Villanova almost going down to Robert Morris, to buzzer beaters, and overtime games galore, this day was nonstop excitement and 13 of the 16 games were competitive. Lets just say, I'm definitely pumped for the rest of the tournament, this will be the perfect sports fix for the remaining weeks until baseball starts. So, my top 10 countdown of greatest March Madness moments, in no particular order. I have missed some of the classics including the famous Illinois-Arizona game, so forgive me if your favorite moment is off the list:

- Laettner! I was 7 at the time, but I still remember watching this game at my grandma's house. Sick clutch play after clutch play in what was probably the greatest college hoops game ever.

- Chris Webber calling timeout when Michigan had none left, and no championship for the Fab Five. Pretty self-explanatory

- Bryce Drew and Valparaiso: Such a perfectly designed play, Valpo went onto win another game, before falling in a great Sweet 16 game. My favorite Cinderella team ever.

- Memphis-Kansas for the Championship. Chalmers' miracle, Memphis missing 38854890 free throws down the stretch, and Kansas coming back from something like 9 points down in the final 2 minutes to force OT, and ship the Title.

- George Fucking Mason: I still remember being in the Bellagio poker room for the end of the George Mason-UConn game. The entire final 5 minutes of regulation and overtime, the poker room, and adjacent sports book were beyond insane. Probably the most insane indoor atmosphere I've ever been a part of, and what a game it was, as George Mason became the most improbable of Final Four teams.

- TODAY March 18, 2010, probably the greatest single day in the history of the tournament.

- Syracuse vs. Kansas for the Title. Carmelo Anthony and Gerry McNamara vs. Kirk Hinrich and Nick Collison, it was an unbelievable title game, and Hakim Warrick's block of Kansas' last second shot to tie the game, was an amazing tournament moment.

- The entire 1998 tournament from start to finish

- Stephen Curry and Davidson. One man single handedly willed his team to the elite eight, and came ohh so close to the Final Four, and what would have surpassed George Mason as the greatest Cinderella in tournament history.

And of course, #1, which until UC Irvine, CSUF, or a 16 seed win a tournament game, will always be my top tournament moment: Princeton 43 UCLA 41, not just because it was UCLA though. Here you had the defending national champions, albeit without the O'Bannon brothers, but still one of the most physically gifted teams in the country playing a bunch of slow, unathletic rocket scientists, and just this one time the geeks actually won in real life. Not the prettiest game ever, but the electricity in that arena was unreal, and that was about as heavily invested as I've ever gotten in a game not involving my teams. If they played 100 times, UCLA would win 99 times, but Princeton won this one time, and that's what makes this tournament so great. The image of that final perfectly executed backdoor cut play will stay with me forever.

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