The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Beyond the Box Score

March 19, 2013

BLOG: Picking the NCAA tourney in a hurry

I've never been good at picking the NCAA Tournament. I've never won a pool. Never really been close, actually.

I use my heart too much. I pick the teams I like and against the teams I don't like.

So this year I'm trying something different. I'm giving myself three seconds to pick each game. No research. Just a gut feeling. And random, irrelevant thoughts.



SECOND ROUND (because that's what they call the first round now)


(1) Louisville over (16) does it really matter?

Louisville drubs the winner of North Carolina A&T and Liberty.

(9) Missouri over (8) Colorado State

I know nothing about the Rams. Missourah is very talented.

(12) Oregon over (5) Oklahoma State

A 12 always beats a 5. And Oregon is even better than your typical 12.

(4) Saint Louis over (13) New Mexico State

I saw Saint Louis play in KC ... this means nothing. But the Billikens are pretty dang good.

(6) Memphis over (11) Middle Tennessee or St. Mary's

I'm tempted to pick St. Mary's if the Gaels win the play-in ... but nope.

(3) Michigan State over (14) Valparaiso

Dang, those replays of Bryce Drew hitting the buzzer-beater for Valpo look dated. I'm old. Anyway, Sparty rolls.

(7) Creighton over (10) Cincinnati

Teach me how to Doug(ie) McDermott.

(2) Duke over (15) Albany

Is this Albany, N.Y., we're talking about? Doesn't matter either way.


(1) Gonzaga over (16) Southern

Missouri Southern might have a better shot.

(9) Wichita State at (8) Pittsburgh

I feel like Wichita could be a lot like Tulsa in the sense that I always thought Tulsa sucked until I spent time there. Plus ... WuShock.

(12) Ole Miss over (5) Wisconsin

Another 12-5. Marshall Henderson will probably choke. But I hope not.

(4) Kansas State over (13) Boise State or La Salle

Does the Boise State basketball team play on a blue court? Just checked. Nope. But it is called Taco Bell Arena. Lame.

(6) Arizona over (11) Belmont

Belmont could prove to be a 'Killer B' again ... but probably not.

(3) New Mexico over (14) Harvard

"How do you like them apples?"

(10) Iowa State over (7) Notre Dame

Iowa State deserves some good fortune after that home loss to KU. Notre Dame deserves to lose every game for a decade after their recent uniform choices.

(2) Ohio State over (15) Iona

Wonder how embarrassing it is for Iowa when Iona gets in and the Hawkeyes don't?


(1) Kansas over (16) Western Kentucky

WKU is the Hilltoppers. Lawrence is in the eastern part of Kansas where there are actually some hills. What does that mean? Nothing.

(8) North Carolina over (9) Villanova

Like I'm going to pick against a Roy Williams-Kansas second round matchup.

(5) VCU over (12) Akron

Chances Akron pulls the upset? Zip.

(4) Michigan over (13) South Dakota State

Jackrabbit is a cool mascot, though.

(11) Minnesota over (4) UCLA

Wasn't Minnesota pretty good early on?

(3) Florida over (14) Northwestern State

Covering the MIAA, I'm pretty tired of directional school names.

(10) Oklahoma over (7) San Diego State

The opposite pick if you were to ask me where I wanted to live for the next 10 years.

(2) Georgetown over (15) Florida Gulf Coast

FGC's name makes me think the school is way up near Alabama. Just looked. It's not.


(1) Indiana over (16) teams with crappy abbreviations

LIU Brooklyn or JMU ... doesn't matter

(8) N.C. State over (9) Temple

American Aquarium are one of my favorite bands. They're N.C. State fans.

(12) Cal over (5) UNLV

UNLV nearly lost (81-80 in OT) to a team (Dixie State) that Pitt State beat. Plus, I've been on Cal's campus. It's purty.

(4) Syracuse over (13) Montana

This isn't FCS football, Griz.

(6) Butler over (11) Bucknell

I kinda want to pick the upset ... but BUTLER.

(3) Marquette over (14) Davidson

Marquette has great unis.

(2) Miami over (15) Pacific

Here I am.

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