I didn’t get a chance to write up my picks for the Final Four following the outcomes of Friday’s games. The twins just weren’t having it. So, I can’t claim any props for picking Connecticut and Villanova beforehand. Still, I did. It wasn’t a stroke of genius or anything like that. I’ve been picking Big East teams all year, every year since 1982. There is no rocket science to that. Besides, Pitt doesn’t shoot free throws well. I am a New Yorker and I believe the teams in the Big East are usually superior. That’s often the case, though not always.
I picked Louisville and they look a step slow – and like a team that is going to go down in flames very soon. Terrence Williams looks like he’s waiting for an invitation to dominate. The Spartans don’t hand those out. MSU is up 9 with about 10 minutes to go. The press isn’t working. Big men are rushing shots. Guards are jacking threes early and Michigan State is still getting offensive rebounds. The Cardinals can pull it out, but they’re going to need Pitino to do more than the usual. His imitation of Jim Boeheim’s 2-3 zone hasn’t worked all that well, but there is plenty of time left.
Okay, some guy just banked in a three-pointer. I’d have to say that the “gods” are rolling with the Spartans.
I like Oklahoma in an upset over North Carolina. I’ve been picking against Oklahoma all year long. I’m sure they’ll lose now that I’ve picked them to win.
Williams has to take over this game for Louisville to win. The “team” isn’t going to win this one. The game has to come down to a phenomenal exertion of will. It’s him or no one.
ADDENDUM (with 2:19 remaining): I can’t say I’m surprised that Louisville is going to lose this game. Here’s what I had to say about the Cardinals a little while ago on TSF.
“On Louisville, I agree that Williams is the guy. My concern with them is that after Williams and Earl Clark, I don’t see much. I think they’re susceptible to losing the 2nd weekend game if either of them have to exert too much energy in the first game.”
Of course in the same post, I extolled the virtues of the Kansas Jayhawks and predicted they would knock off Michigan State. Shows what I know!!!