Thursday, March 18, 2010

March Madness - Day 1 Halfway Point

Well, we reached the halfway point of the first day of March Madness with eight games in the books. After a quick dinner break where I actually left my hotel room for the first time (I'm traveling with our college baseball team and we conveniently had an off-day today), I decided to recap a little bit of what's happened so far. I also wanted to give a shoutout to Matt Miller, who was the only person in my bracket contest who correctly picked the first eight games.

Matt, who is a 2004 grad of Mount Vernon Nazarene University and currently teaches seventh and eighth grade and coaches basketball at Faith Christian Academy, told me that he went with his gut when making his picks in the bracket (which I've attached below). While an Ohio State fan, he didn't go with his heart as he only took the Buckeyes as far as the Elite Eight. He also said that he got in five different pools this year and was attracted to mine because (1) it was free and (2) he could win a $25 gift card. Whatever it was, I'm glad he decided to join in.

Very few people nationally picked the first eight games correctly as there were three upsets that included No. 13 Murray State with a 66-65 win over No. 4 Vanderbilt for their first NCAA Tournament win since 1959, No. 11 Old Dominion with a 51-50 win over No. 6 Notre Dame, and No. 10 St. Mary's 80-71 win over No. 7 Richmond. Throw in Baylor's first NCAA Tournament win since 1950, BYU's double-overtime thriller over Florida that included 37 points from Jimmer Fredette, and Villanova's overtime escape from Robert Morris and it's already been an exciting first half of the day.

I would also like to give a special shoutout to Jessica Lantz and Jason Pitman, who both correctly picked the first seven games along with Matt before suffering their first loss when Butler beat Texas-El Paso. Five other people are also tied for second place with seven out of eight correct picks.

Stay tuned for more updates and enjoy the madness that might even include an Ohio University upset of Georgetown as the No. 14 Bobcats were up 12 points at the half.

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