Sunday, March 30, 2014
Welcome to a friendly rivalry version of BracketRacket, the one-stop shopping place for all your offbeat NCAA tournament needs. Today's edition includes a father's role reversal, the true length of the final minute in an NCAA tournament basketball game and some rivalry love.
LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON
Glenn Robinson is embracing his newest role around the basketball court — as a spectator.
The former Purdue and NBA star has become a regular on the Indiana college basketball circuit, following his son, Michigan sophomore Glenn Robinson III, around the state.
He was there to see his son make the winning basket in overtime against Purdue in February. He was at Bankers Life Fieldhouse two weeks ago to see the Wolverines reach the Big Ten tournament championship game. He was at Lucas Oil Stadium to watch his son in the Midwest Regional semifinal Friday night and he's planning a return trip for Sunday, when the second-seeded Wolverines (28-8) face eighth-seeded Kentucky (27-10). The winner advances to the Final Four, something the Big Dog got a chance to experience as a player.
"As long as we win, it's not tough at all," the elder Robinson told AP sports writer Michael Marot in Indianapolis. "It's just great that I have the opportunity to be able to see my son go out there and play hard and do what he does best. He's going to continue to improve. He does a little bit of everything. He's just an all-around player."
Robinson could soon become a regular on the Indiana college football circuit, too, now that his younger son, Gelen, has signed a national letter of intent to play at Purdue. Gelen Robinson will be a freshman this fall.
The rivalry between Kentucky and Louisville is one of the fiercest in college basketball with games that are always physical and sometimes heated.
When it comes to respect, it appears there's no shortage of that between the Bluegrass rivals.
Just look at what Louisville's Russ Smith had to say about the Wildcats after the Cardinals' loss in the NCAA tournament on Friday:
"Those are a great group of guys. They show great love. You respect someone when you see a competitor out there the court. From each class, from my sophomore year on, Kentucky's guys have shown me the same love. And those are new waves of classes, not the same people. So I've gotten great respect for them and their program."
Considering Smith was on the losing end and not playing the gracious winner, it seems pretty clear he meant what he said.
We know how you feel: The final minute of a college basketball game seems like it lasts forever, filled with multiple timeouts and, if you're lucky, plenty of agonizing stoppages for the officials to look at the replay monitor.
Well, the good folks at Deadspin decided to look at the final 60 seconds of this year's NCAA tournament and, yeah, it takes a long time to get through a minute.
They found that the final 60 seconds took an average of 5 minutes, 57 seconds, with a high of 18:07 to complete the Tennessee-Michigan matchup.
Overall, including the extra minute in the six overtime games — not including Saturday's Wisconsin-Arizona game — the final 60 seconds of the first 52 games in the tournament lasted 5 hours, 44 minutes, 51 seconds.
It's almost like they're working on a DMV clock.
There's plenty more slow-moving data, go check it out: http://bit.ly/1mwUkdG
At least Billy Donovan saved his shoes.
According to freelancer Clay Bailey in Memphis, Tenn., the Florida coach protected his shoes before going into the Florida locker room after the Gators won the South Regional by beating Dayton 62-52, and by the time reporters got inside a circle of soaked towels were on the floor marking where the Gators had celebrated by dousing their coach with water.
"He knew it was coming because he took off his shoes," Florida senior Casey Prather said. "Last time, he was telling us we can't get his shoes wet because they can't take no more. All I saw was him soaked in water and screaming to the top of his lungs."
No wonder Donovan was decked out in warm-ups when he finally met with reporters.
Predicting the NCAA tournament with the board game Risk: http://bit.ly/P5APuF
How the 2014 bracket stacks up in terms of upsets: http://bit.ly/1fAAFSy
Ranking the entire bracket based on average height: http://bit.ly/1lvhzVj
And a mascot ranking: http://foxs.pt/1gOxg81
STAT OF THE DAY
With Wisconsin's win over Arizona, the Big Ten has a team in the Final Four for the 11th time in 16 years, according to STATS. If Michigan or Michigan State wins on Sunday, it will mark the first time since Illinois and Michigan State in 2005 that the conference has gotten two teams through to the national semifinals. And if both teams win, it will be just the second time a conference has had three of the Final Four, joining the Big East in 1985, when Villanova, Georgetown and St. John's all got through.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"The thing about the NCAA tournament is it's exhilarating when you win and equally as devastating when you lose." — Arizona coach Sean Miller after the Wildcats lost 64-63 to Wisconsin.
South Regional Final
At Memphis, Tenn.
Florida 62, Dayton 52
West Regional Final
At Anaheim, Calif.
Wisconsin 64, Arizona 63
Midwest Regional Final
Michigan (28-8) vs. Kentucky (27-10), 5:05 p.m.
East Regional Final
At New York City
UConn (29-8) vs. Michigan State (29-8), 2:20 p.m.