Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Kentucky Girls "Sweet Sixteen" should be far from boring
Hopefully, the bleachers down in the Diddle...or is it Houchens?.....whatever they're calling the WKU gym these days will be a little more packed than the bleachers are in the picture here. Why the KHSAA is playing this thing in Bowling Green instead of Louisville, Lexington or even Covington is beyond me. And don't go into the old rant about attendance. Chances are they'd pack more into Memorial, Rupp, Freedom Hall or even Louisville Gardens. Another Wood Selig conspiracy at work here?
It all kicks off Wednesday at 1 p.m. with a game between 6th region champ Butler playing 2nd region winners Henderson County. Top ranked Marion County and dangerous Louisville Mercy square off in the 2:30 p.m. contest. After that, the rest of the state joins in and battles it out over the next four days to see who will advance to the 9 p.m. final game. Both Louisville area teams are in the same bracket and could meet in the 2nd round of action if they can get by their opening opponents.
I know it is tradition and been done for years...but do they really need to play both the semifinals and finals on the same day? How would women's college basketball react if...let's say UConn and Stanford squared off at 11 a.m., followed by Nebraska and Tennessee at 1:30 p.m., then the winners were brought back out for a 9 p.m. contest the same night? Imagine the howling and outrage on the men's side if Kentucky or Kansas had only 7 hours rest before they had to go up against the winner of the Duke vs. Louisville game? Could a Sunday 5 p.m. tipoff work here? I think it could...
(Please note that I am not giving you my early Final Four picks for the NCAA Men's and Women's Tournaments above. Just throwing out some names. The teams listed above would be some great matchups, though.)
Nevertheless, the "greatest show in hoops" begins in about 24 hours. Good luck to all the participants and let's hope the fans fill the stands for what will surely be some excellent matchups and hard fought contests. My prediction for the final game? Bowling Green has done little wrong in compling a 28-2 record this year and stands a decent chance of getting to the final game. If Marion County can get past the Mercy Jaguars and then whip either Butler or Henderson County on Friday...they should meet up with Bowling Green in the final. Marion County hasn't lost to a Kentucky opponent all year and it could be the start of a high school dynasty if they take the title home to Lebanon. Youth being served, I see them as the team to beat and predict they'll cut down the nets late Saturday night.
I used to attend the majority of the Sweet Sixteen women's tournaments whenthe were held in Louisville. I won't be able to get to Bowling Green to cover this year's action, but we'll monitor it from Cardinal Couple Central and provide you with updates. Even if Assumption and Christian Academy aren't playing this year...
Jumping over to the Big East Women's tourney...Notre Dame actually gave UConn a scare last night before the Huskies regrouped in the second half and won by 15. Ugly moment with less than a minute to go when UConn guard Caroline Doty received a brutal elbow to the face...unintentional... from Notre Dame's Devereaux Peters while the players were battling for a loose ball. Action was stopped for five minutes while the trainers and doctors checked the prone Doty. In the nightcap of the semis, WVU withstood an early battle with Rutgers and advanced to the 7 p.m. final tonight.
Doty's status for tonight's game is up in the air but it probably won't matter for the Huskies if she plays or not. As long as Geno has Tina Charles and Maya Moore on the court, he could fill out the rest of the lineup with me, Meryl Streep and Sally Field and win by double digits.
(Sally's got a wicked crossover...watch her. She didn't get the monicker "the Flying Nun" by mistake. Now that she's on a monthy dosage of Boniva...may not get by the strict NCAA substance guidelines...but shouldn't they be testing John Wall and Thuggins Cousins first?)
Written by Sonja