So other than getting giddy as hell over ice dancing in the Olympic games I've been struggling to care about sports for the past couple of weeks. But I really feel like I'm now over football and I'm ready to concentrate on college basketball. Yeah I know, I'm a little late and the college basketball season is almost over. So what. To me, this is the really interesting time for college b-ball anyway. I'm guessing I'm not alone in this either. I'm catching up though and there are a few teams listed below that I will be rooting for as we head towards March Madness.
1. Utah State Aggies. What can I say, it's my alma mater. Plus it's a bonus that the Ags have been pretty good for awhile now. Their last 5 season records are 24-8, 25-4, 24-9, 23-8, and 28-6. They have been in the Big West Conference, so like many non-power conference teams that do well every year they have still have had to win their conference tourney to get into the "Big Dance". Some of their best regular seasons have gone down the tubes with an upset in the Big West tournament. Two years ago they were ranked 21st in the nation and had a 25-3 record. They were upset in the conference tournament, and got screwed by NCAA selection committee. If it had been a team from a power conference ranked in the top 25 they would have got in. Such is life in smaller conferences. You get used to it. Now Utah State is in the WAC and I guess you could consider that a mid-major conference but it's really only a slight step up from the Big West conference. So I imagine the expectations will be the same. They are 18-6 right now but there is no doubt in my mind they need the conference tourney championship to get into the 64 team field.
2. Duke Blue Devils. Yep. I like Duke and I really like Reddick. Let the scorn begin. I can't help it, I've been rooting for Duke ever since the days of Johnny Dawkins. It's not rational. I mean I've had other sports teams that I liked as a youngster (Yankees, Cowboys, etc) that I despise now. Why not Duke as well? They're like the Yankees of college b-ball, exactly the type of team I usually root against, and by all rights I should be making voodoo dolls of Reddick and putting them through my lawn mover before every game. I just like em. I can't explain it. Maybe part of it is that I've always hated North Carolina and at some level I felt like I'd be almost a Tar Heel fan by rejecting Duke. I couldn't have that on my conscience.
3. Georgetown. I was a huge Hoya fan as a teenager and they are another team I've stuck with through the years. They haven't been much good since the 80's and early 90's but I'll still watch their games occasionally. I would love to see another era of "Hoya Paranoia". Just don't ask me to name anybody on their team right now.