Wednesday, March 14, 2012


Earlier this evening I wrote that Iona could be a sleeper in the tournament--perhaps the VCU of this year's March. Last year VCU was invited to play and the decision was criticized. Then all VCU did was win its play-in game, then two games to get to the sweet sixteen, and then two more games to get to the final four. Iona was similarly criticized when they were invited to play this year. They had, however, averaged over 80 points a game during this season and the Gaels have terrific athletes.

In the first half Iona went ahead of BYU by 25 points. I felt mildly pleased with my ability to predict games. This, I should have known from past experience, was a grand hallucination. I have written about (a) how it is almost impossible to predict college basketball games and (b) how often I am incorrect when I attempt to make predictions.

When I wrote that Iona might be a sleeper, I did not mean that they would fall asleep. But go to sleep they did. There are people well into their nocturnal zs who are more awake than Iona was in the second half. I truly have never seen a team choke more completely than Iona just did, blowing a 25 point lead and losing to BYU. Not only did they miss everything they put up, they played about as dumb a brand of basketball as a team can play. On two occasions a play worked brilliantly for a dunk, but instead of dunking it the player tried to bank it in and missed. On another occasion a player all alone looked like a frightened teenager and did not finish the shot. Knucklehead plays after knucklehead plays.

In the two play contests tonight teams that led the entire game blew huge leads to allow their opponent to come back and win. In the book I mention how I met one fellow who after a game gave me some sage advice. "This just goes to show one thing" he said. "What is that I asked". His response was simple "You just don't know."

Another fellow in Las Vegas years back told me that if I wanted a winner, just listen to what he says, and go bet on the other team. This is my advice to any reader of my blogs. If I say, go with the Jackrabbits, bet on Baylor.

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