Gib Arnold was being marketed for the Hawaii basketball coaching job weeks before it even opened. Not sure I like that. One thing I do like: his energy. Arnold’s going to hit the ground running; he may have started working already … don’t be surprised if he’s already got a bunch of recruits lined up to join him in Manoa. … We’ve known Arnold got the job less than three hours, and I’ve already spoken with several people who are unhappy with the pick. Let’s see what he’s got first.
–By Dave Reardon
Matt Furuto was 24 for 32 in the first round of March Madness. Here are his choices for Round 2, followed by some comments from Matt.
Kansas over Northern Iowa, Maryland over Michigan State, Tennessee over Ohio, Ohio State over Georgia Tech, Syracuse over Gonzaga, Butler over Murray State, Xavier over Pitt, Kansas State over BYU, Kentucky over Wake Forest, Wisconsin over Cornell, New Mexico over Washington, West Virginia over Missouri, Duke over Cal, Texas A&M over Purdue, Baylor over Old Dominion, Saint Mary’s over Villanova.
The first round proved that the gap between the supposed “Cinderella” teams and teams from power conferences is obviously closing. The strongest conference throughout the season had proven to be the Big East, until 2 days ago. Supposed powerhouse Georgetown was sent packing by #14 seed Ohio screwing up many brackets. Meanwhile sleeper teams such as Louisville and Notre Dame got knocked out as well. If the first round taught us anything, it was that no seed is safe. One of these days, we will definitely see a #16 seed take out a #1. It’s a lock. Best of luck to everyone in round two!
Here are second-round picks and comments from Jet Wong, who got 25 of 32 picks right for the first round:
Kansas, Michigan State, Ohio State, Syracuse, Pitt, Kansas State, Duke, Texas A&M, Baylor, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Washington, West Virginia, Tennessee, Murray State (editor’s note: due to DR’s screwup, Matt’s picks were not made before start of St. Mary’s-Villanova).
It’s going to be interesting to see if Ohio can continue its run and beat Tennessee. I know I picked Villanova for the 2nd round but I think St. Mary’s can pull it off with how vulernable Nova looked against Robert Morris. BYU-Kansas State could turn into a shootout like the Florida-BYU matchup and I think I picked Kansas State in that matchup and believe they’ll pull it out in the end. Also if ODU can slow down the game (they seem to be doing that most of the year) and make Baylor play at their pace, they have a good shot at winning even though I chose Baylor.
And teams have got to hit free throws to win. Georgia Tech won today with the defense but also they hit 24/25 free throws which is a major improvement since they team averages about 65% on the year.
Here are Sean Eyman’s second round picks:
Kansas, Maryland, Tennessee, Ohio State, Syracuse, Butler, Pittsburgh, Kansas State, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Washington (“I just like Washington in this matchup (against New Mexico”), West Virginia, Duke, Texas A&M (“the injury catches up with Purdue here”), Baylor, Villanova.