The Uconn Huskies won the NCAA Championship of Men's Basketball tonight by defeating the Kentucky Wildcats by a narrow margin. Uconn came out of the gates strong and while Kentucky made run after run, the Huskies proved to be more experienced and mentally tougher. The game really came down to the inability of Kentucky to make free-throws. It could have simply been nerves. Randle did not play his best game, but I felt that Young showed that he too, will be a major factor in the NBA in the future and I'm sure in the draft this summer.
When the 2014 NBA Draft takes place on June 26th, many people feel that Kansas big man Joel Embiid will be a top 5 selection, however, according to KU head coach Bill Self, Embiid is considering sticking around for another season.
The season has come down to it's final four, and to the shock of many, the SEC has two teams left standing. This tournament did not go the way most picked, but Kentucky may just be the shock of the tournament. Florida was the number one overall seed and most prognosticators had picked them to get the the round of four. Kentucky was given an eight seed and had to beat undefeated Wichita State and Louisville, before defeating Big Ten Power and number 2 seed Michigan to get to the semi-final round.
Freshmen players are always exciting in college basketball, but the one-and-done rule is hurting the game because of a lack of identity and continuity. This season, we have seen guys like Jabari Parker, Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle, and Joel Embiid steal the highlights on SportsCenter, but is this good for the image of college basketball?
When a team is winning, the coach usually doesn't get much credit, if at all. But when a team is losing, fans call for the coach's head. That's normally not the right way to go about things when a once-mighty team finds itself in the unfamiliar position of losing. But with the Los Angeles Lakers, it stands to reason that the best way they can kick off the rebuilding process is by getting rid of the coach.
You look at the Chicago Bulls' numbers and they are anything but sexy. As of this writing, the Bulls are dead-last in the NBA in scoring, averaging just 93.0 ppg and bringing to mind memories of Mike Fratello's slow-breaking Cleveland Cavaliers from the mid-'90. However, the team is delivering where it counts the most – on the defensive end – and are holding opponents down to just 92 ppg and 43 percent shooting from the field, both second-best in the league. With that in mind, can the Bulls go far in the Playoffs with a lineup that, once again, features franchise point guard Derrick Rose on the sidelines?
The first night of the Sweet 16 saw the SEC team that actually got respect, with Florida playing 4 seed UCLA. UCLA kept it close for a while, but Florida ended up dominating the second half with a 79-68 win for the Gators. The SEC Player of the Year and SEC Tournament MVP Scotty Wilbekin took over in the second half after a sub-par first half. He showed the toughness that has propelled this Florida team all year round and won them the overall number 1 seed in this tournament.
If you look at most NBA mock draft boards, you'll see on almost every single one of them that Andrew Wiggins is expected to be a top 3 draft choice if he's not taken number one overall. After Kansas lost to Stanford on Sunday, Wiggins faced a lot of criticism based on his performance, and how he seemingly disappeared and was shut down. Wiggins only attempted 6 field goals, making just 1, and went 2 of 2 from the free throw line. He finished with just 4 points.
SEC (men's) basketball seems to get no respect. Well, that may be about to come to an end. Which conference do you think has the best record in the 2014 NCAA Basketball Tournament? ACC? Big East? Big Ten? No, no and no. It's the SEC with a perfect 6-0 record through the first two rounds. In fact, really the SEC is 7-0 as Tennessee had to win a "play-in" game to get into the field of 64.
It's been a crazy NCAA tournament thus far, and it will likely get even more exciting. Four teams that have a good shot at being the last ones standing are Louisville, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Florida.
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