The weekend proved a couple of things, namely, the ACC is the most overrated conference in college hoops. You might even make a case for the Big Ten, but there is no shame in Wisconsin losing to UNLV. Anybody who follows college hoops knew that the Runnin' Rebels were going to beat the Badgers. But enough about that, time to call out the ACC for being a fraud of a conference. It gets sickening listening to all of the ACC-honks back peddle as the conference schools fell to the likes of Virginia Commonwealth and Butler. When you look around at all of the teams still playing, maybe the time has come to cap the amount of teams each conference can send to the tournament.
DUKE IS DUKE
Looking back, Duke needs to be in the tournament. Not because they bring flavor. And certainly not because they deserve it. Rather, they are needed to bring the sports book together and give even the most hapless of gamblers an automatic win. The Las Vegas sports books seemingly conspire to give gamblers one chance to get a win under their belts. Like the free drinks they dispense (thank you Excalibur), a freebie like Duke gives a gambler the "itch" to do more gambling. Seriously ask anybody you know if they wagered on Duke. You can’t do it. Nobody bets money on Duke, and certainly nobody takes them in their office bracket. So keep Duke in the tournament.
GRATUITOUS BAD BEAT STORY
Leave it to UCLA and Seth Greenberg to contribute to the two worst losses of the weekend. (But thank God because if those games had won, THN would be originating from here.) Bruins fans seemed a little chipper for a group that lost on Saturday. At least UCLA and Indiana did go under for the first half on Saturday. The booking agent raised an eyebrow and pointed out that the under is 59.5 when the wager was made. And that number was never in doubt. One of the easiest wins of the weekend. (Followed only by the Tennessee/Long Beach State over.) But way to set college hoops back about 600 years with that game.
- Mike Scyphers really screwed Maryland with that bogus call on D.J. Strawberry. But since the money was on Butler, it was nice to be on the other side for a change.
- The Big XII may or may not belong on the list of overrated conferences, but Kansas looks damn good, and Texas A&M beat a damn good Louisville team. Acie Law IV will never have to buy another drink in Sunset Beach for his part in the miracle cover over Louisville. Two free throws to push over the –2.5 halftime line was one of the highlights of the evening.
- Welcome back UNLV. College basketball missed you.
- Oops to those of you who also took Nevada to the Final Four. Huge upset loss to Memphis. (Shut up, can’t you just go along?) What, nobody else had Nevada in the Final Four?
- Doesn’t it figure that some dude in the back row wearing a Duke sweatshirt would miss every one of his bets on Saturday? Each one. But God bless him, he kept on cheering. Too bad he left before he could be asked who he liked in the UCLA game. (He must have chosen the Bruins.)
- So long Kevin Durant. Please turn pro so the Sports Dork can go back to ignoring college hoops again. He has cast a stain on your college career that can’t be erased. Having the Sports Dork give you his endorsement is akin to that smoke smell that gets engrained into your clothes after a weekend in the sports book. (The stench is especially jarring when you live in a non-smoking state.
- Greg Oden, you might want to stick around for another year. If for nothing else, so you can continue to push around people smaller than you. What a jerk.
- You know that Simpsons episode where Homer swears off the Isotopes, but becomes a full-fledged fan after his team nears the pennant? That’s USC fans right now. Of course, all of them will tell you that they were always a fan or slept with half of the team when they were in college, but don’t believe them. (You can see the clip here.)
- Celebrity Sighting: Slugger Jose Canseco was playing the $5 tables at the Excalibur early Sunday morning. The bad part, Canseco recognized that he was recognized and was actually enjoying it. Waited 20 minutes to try to get on Jose’s table, but nobody was budging. Missed out on an opportunity to go totally fan boy and do a “bash brother” with Jose after a black jack. But that dream will have to live on.
- The hype surrounding Entourage was too much to give a chance until the ride back from Las Vegas on Sunday. Surprisingly, the show is really good. Good writing, good characters. Not having HBO, can’t wait for the next season to come out on DVD. Jeremy Piven has long been a favorite actor, and this role is probably his best since “Draz” in PCU.
What is the protocol on taking your buddy's money at the poker table? The Tropicana poker room accommodated our group with its own private table, that allowed us to fleece each other. In some sense, losing money to your buddy instead of a casino makes it a little easier. At the same time, you would rather win the casino’s money anyway, right? So what is the proper decorum here?