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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Selection Monday -- WBB Cards dealt lousy hand in NCAA Tournament...Tuesday Cardinal Couple



NCAA TOURNAMENT A ROUGH FLIGHT FOR CARDINALS



Autograph signing at Selection Show
To get to Tampa this year for the NCAA WBB Final Four you must start in Tampa. If the statement sounds a little quixotic, the Louisville women's basketball team will start their 2015 NCAA Tournament in the same city where the finals will be played...sunny Tampa Bay, FL....with a 4 p.m. Saturday game against BYU. Against some huge windmills. 


As Jeff Walz said, at least it's warm there. And if you're going to get screwed by the NCAA, a pleasant atmosphere and sunny skies makes the experience at least a little bearable.

The Selection Show at Cardinal Arena was attended well and the fans didn't have to wait long to find out that Louisville was headed south to start the quest. Walz and Matt Andrews handled the commercial breaks with speculation on the seedings. 

The Cards, a #3 seed in the Albany region, were done no favors at all...starting out against the  Cougars...who won the WCC Conference Tournament over San Francisco and posted a 23-9 record. 

If anyone could be more dismayed about the choice, it would probably be BYU head coach Jeff Judkins, who will be travelling 2300+ miles to probably be one and done. The Cougars were the #5 seed going into conference play. We'll dissect them a little more as the week goes on. 



Where diabolical plots and insane theories are hatched...the
NCAA women's selection committee room. They must be stopped. 
Awaiting the BYU vs. Louisville game will be the winner of the South Florida vs. LSU contest. USF and Jose Fernandez are never an easy "W" for Louisville and the Cards escaped with a 60-56 nail-biter win last year when they went running with the Bulls in the AAC Tournament. They did defeat USF by 20 at the KFC YUM! Center in the regular season.

This isn't the KFC YUM! Center and Jose's gals were 26-7, 15-3 in the AAC and 12-2 at home. They played UConn to a 70-56 loss in the AAC Tournament.

  
I asked "E" to smile like she had just grabbed a rebound
Should Louisville survive that gauntlet, it's off to Albany, NY to likely face Matthew Mitchell and the #2 UK Wildcats.

We all know about the Cats.

Waiting in the wings to challenged Louisville's quest to return to Tampa is no other than the UConn Huskies. The NCAA must have thought the games were being played in New Albany, IN...since they also stuck WKU in the region. 

Coach Walz was as upbeat as he could be with the media after the Selection Show. He deserves an Oscar for that performance...because the Cards were stuck in the most difficult region in the tournament and quite possibly the toughest opening four-team pod. He did not speculate on what was beyond Saturday, the prime objective this time of year is one-at-a-time, survive and advance.

We'll have his, Jude Schimmel, Al Greener and Coach Sam P.'s comments on Selection Monday on our Saturday radio show. 


It takes six wins to take the title. Louisville did put two six or more win streaks to together during the regular season. The task of getting back to Tampa after starting in Tampa is odds-prohibitive for the Cards...but so was beating Baylor a couple of years ago. WE all know what happened in that one...

Trust in the mad scientist to have the girls ready. Get ready for some fun basketball. And forget that the NCAA hammered the Cards again in the post-season selection brackets. If the Cards are good enough, they'll win. There are no easy wins this time of year. Especially if your team has a bird as a mascot and wears red. 

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TOURNAMENT TIME

Thus begins our second March Contest...the NCAA Women's
Tournament selection here at CARDINAL COUPLE. 

Easy stuff. Pick the winners of all 63 games, total the most wins and you win!. 

A format many have found easy to submit to us is just listing the winners for each round. We actually have an entry that was sent at 9 p.m. last night from Blue Lou that we'll share with you as an example:

UCONN, RUTGERS, TEXAS, CALIFORNIA, LSU, LOUISVILLE, IOWA STATE, KENTUCKY, SOUTH CAROLINA, SYRACUSE, OHIO STATE, NORTH CAROLINA, ARKANSAS-LITTLE ROCK, ARIZONA ST,. OKLAHOMA ST., FLORIDA ST., NOTRE DAME, DEPAUL, OKLAHOMA, STANFORD, MIAMI, IOWA, ARKANSAS, NORTHWESTERN ST., MARYLAND, GREEN BAY, MISSISSIPPI ST., DUKE, GONZAGA, OREGON ST., PITTSBURGH, TENNESSEE

UCONN, CALIFORNIA, LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY, SOUTH CAROLINA, NORTH CAROLINA, ARIZONA ST., FLORIDA ST., NOTRE DAME, STANFORD, MIAMI, NORTHWESTERN ST.,MARYLAND, DUKE, OREGON ST., TENNESSEE

UCONN, LOUISVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA, FLORIDA ST., NOTRE DAME, MIAMI, DUKE, OREGON ST.

LOUISVILLE, FLORIDA ST., NOTRE DAME, OREGON ST., 

LOUISVILLE, NOTRE DAME

NOTRE DAME

Easy, peasy...right? 

You can leave your picks in the comments sections or e-mail them to us at:

cardinalcouple@twc.com  


Make sure you picks are in by start of tournament play Friday. Good luck in winning the $25 gift card for first or an absolutely fabulous CARDINAL COUPLE T-Shirt for second.

Game(s) on !!!


paulie





  

19 comments:

  1. I'm not sure why I continue to get my hopes up only to have them dashed by the idiots that make the bracket decisions. Dru or whatever her name was had an absolutely nonsensical excuse for why the Cards were place where they were. Is there any other state with multiple schools representing them that got placed in the same bracket? The tournament selection committee truly is a good ole boys club.

    ReplyDelete
  2. How many other states put three (or more) teams in the tournament? Were they all put in the same region?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is one state with four teams (Florida) and eight states with three teams.

      Florida's are Miami, Flordia State, South Florida and Florida Gulf Coast. They are divided up. Kentucky is the only state with all three teams in the same region.

      There are actually 34 states and the District of Columbia with representatives in the NCAA WBB. Notable omissions? Nah...not really.
      Hawaii, Alaska, North Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire, Delaware, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, West Virginia, Nevada, Michigan (maybe a surprise?) and Missouri aren't dancing in the WBB Tournament.

      Delete
  3. Pretty well sums it up Paulie. Watched two hours of ESPN's broadcast and it seemed like everyone was talked up but the Cards.

    Some pretty interesting theories out there about how a bunch of high potential male coached squads like Louisville, Kentucky and USF ended up in UConn's region. Seems like a stretch to me but whatever. It's a bit ironic that we lose our hosting opportunity and are then put on the home court of the team that replaced us as a host. It could also be that the committee wanted a dry run for the final four in Tampa. I guess this scenario is one of the few downsides to playing in a beautiful venue like the YUM!

    In any case, sports like life isn't always fair. It sounds like everyone has the right attitude about it. We've just got to strap on the armor and go do war. It is what it is.

    Looking forward to your radio show and hearing from Jude. I see she was still in a cast at the Selection Show. Hope she's healing up well.

    It's all good...I think this club will still rock in the tourney.

    ReplyDelete
  4. BIG TIME SCREWED! They gave UK our 2 seed simply because we couldn't host the first two rounds. They reward us by saying we're the weakest 3 seed and putting us in UConn's region. BYU will not be an easy game. They return most of their squad who made the S16 last season.. Jose and USF must be licking their chops to get another chance at us on their home floor especially since we cost them an NCAA bid last season.. An extremely tough draw for this team... It will be tough to get out of the 1st weekend.

    If we get to the S16 and have to play UK, coach Walz will not be able to downplay the game because it's a tournament game.. He can't say it doesn't matter this time...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great point on Walz giving the "it doesn't matter" crap when we get schooled by KY . Jude is better now so that will help if we meet KY again. I don't see us getting that far anyways but I have underestimated this team all year. Just don't think we are that good. Shooting is too weak.

      Delete
  5. Go Cards! You have to win six to be the champ. Let's knock off UConn in the Albany finals, after disposing of the Kittie Litter and then head back to Tampa and do work there. Glad my Cardinals are headed south, an easy drive from Naples. Are you headed down, Paulie and Sonja?

    The Real Joe Hill

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Afraid we are not, Joe. Cheer 'em on for me and get those SW Florida UofL Alumni Fan Club members in the SunDome!

      Paulie

      Delete
  6. Also, just to be clear about this....the 1st and 2nd rounds in Tampa are being played at the SunDome and the Final Four at the Amalie Arena in Tampa...a beautiful venue right on the waterfront.

    Paulie

    ReplyDelete
  7. Even I am surprided that my Cats got a #2 and the Cards got a #3. It must have been the head-to-head match-up during the regular season.

    The NCAA must hate the Commonwealth of Kentucky. If the Cats even get to Albany they'll most likely be facing UofL and then the winner gets UConn? At least we get to stay home for the first two. Tossing WKU into the Albany Region? Nuts.

    Nice one about New Albany, Paulie.

    Matthew Mitchell For Governor

    ReplyDelete
  8. Biggest. Hose. Job. Ever.
    No way we are the weakest 3 seed. I did not really see us as a 2, but definitely felt like we were the strongest 3 seed.
    Playing USF on their home court is going to be a battle. No Russian Rocket this year, but always good for an intense battle.
    USF is not guarantee, though. While LSU has a bunch of losses, those were mostly without their best player. With Ballard back, they have been playing well.

    The committee sure is stinking it up these days.

    Do you think an upset of Uconn, the prohibitive favorite to repeat as NC, would be worthy of the EPSY this go round? We all know, you play the game for a reason. A good portion of this team knows what it means to believe you can do it, and then go out there and do it. If there was ever a team that this had to happen to, I'd take this one. Go get 'em Cards. My plans are set for Tampa, unfortunately the Final Four. Can't make the trip any earlier, and I am mad as a wet hornet about that.
    Jenny

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We'll get the crying, moaning and complaints out of our system as fans (times results may vary) and then stand united behind our team. Also saw that long time coach at Georgia Andy Landers has stepped down. Do the Dawgs go after one of our assistants? Or maybe Cam Newbauer (ex GA asst.) who is at Belmont now?

      Have fun in Tampa. UConn will be there. Say "Hi" to Chris Dailey for me.

      Paulie

      Delete
  9. With all deference to your plight, you made the NCAA Tournament. Virginia did not.

    Wahoo Fan Forever

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True enough. Wish you guys would have made the cut.

      Looks like your club is WNIT bound, right?

      Delete
  10. I can't add much new to what has been said already.

    I'm not all that surprised at UK's two seed vs. Cards' three - UK had the quality wins (South Carolina, Louisville, Baylor) that the Cardinals lacked. And their SEC conference schedule was certainly comparable to Louisville in the ACC. They did have a couple "bad" losses but Cards' end-of-season loss at Virginia was a "bad" loss also.

    Regarding Burn Brother's comment that "it's a bit ironic that we lose our hosting opportunity and are then put on the home court of the team that replaced us as a host." That was exactly what had to happen. Fifteen of the top 16 are hosting, and the team that was selected to host instead of Louisville was always going to get Louisville. Had Cards gotten the two seed instead of UK, they wouldn't have gone to a six seed's court - they would have gone to a seven's court - probably Dayton.

    This is far from the first time that I have seen references to the way the committee slots teams coached by males. I would hope that the coach's gender would have no impact at all on where a team is sent, but when you see pairings like this year after year, it does make you wonder.

    ReplyDelete
  11. It is nonsense. Louisville is #8 in the AP. Louisville is #8 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. Louisville is #7 in the RPI.

    And we are a #9-12 according to the NCAA Selction Committee?

    Someone take their crayons away and sent them to time out.

    Paulie, did you loan Timmy the Intern to them?

    Nick O.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same logic applies to Princeton, too. 13 in AP and USA Today, 12 in RPI, and they get an 8?

      Bias much?

      Delete
  12. I don't know if any of you are interested but there is an ESPN site out there called fivethirtyeight.com that was originally built by Nate Silver who was one of the first guys to statistically analyze pro baseball performance with significant success. ESPN subsequently bought his business and now he works for them.

    The site now has a women's basketball bracket that provides statistical probabilities of a given NCAA team winning at each stage of the national tourney. It's pretty cool and I thought some of you might want to take a look at it now and as the tourney moves forward. If you drag your cursor over a given team you will see what the statistical probability is for that team to win at each stage of the tourney.

    Here is a link to the women's tourney bracket. You'll also see that you can link to the men's bracket from this page.

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/interactives/march-madness-predictions-2015/#womens

    This guy is a numbers wizard. Will be interesting to watch it as the tourney moves forward. You don't have to be a statistician to understand and appreciate the model.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the link! We are a 92% favorite over BYU. That seems high since BYU has two good players but hope we get it done. I think LSU or SFU can give us real trouble. That is going to be a good game between those two.

      Delete

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