My college basketball watching has been way down this year. I saw a little of the holiday tournaments, the Pac-12 opener, and a Gonzaga game if I recall, but not much else. There's the job, of course, then the Australian Open, the Winter Olympics, my mom getting hurt, and spring training. I did get done with my fantasy baseball draft in time to see the selection show, though. Still haven't filled out the brackets, yet, but I think I will catch the Spring Fever by Thursday.
I know all about undefeated Wichita State, I know UCLA is good, and the first Duke-North Carolina game was snowed out. I didn't know Virginia won the ACC, Kentucky wasn't that good, and North Carolina was barely good enough to make the tournament. I usually pay attention to the California and western US schools, but didn't see San Diego State lose to New Mexico, or Cal Poly get the Big West title. Maybe all of this will pay off. Ignorance could be bliss when it comes down to filling out brackets.
Yahoo! is offering a billion dollars if someone fills out a perfect bracket. I believe the odds are two to the 68th power to one against, but what the hell. And those odds are assuming that each team has an equal chance to win each game. You gotta figure Virginia will beat Coastal Carolina, so your odds just improved right there. If Coastal Carolina wins, and someone has that, and ends up with a perfect bracket, they deserve a trillion dollars. Not my money, of course, but it's not going to happen.
I really am in baseball mode, though. However, the Dodgers should be safely in Australia now, and don't play until Saturday. ESPN picks up the slack with games from Florida all week. I taped the Red Sox-Cardinals game, and I'll watch a little of it before I go to bed. I'm sure come Thursday, I can flip the switch to hoops. Friday is the UCLA game versus Tulsa. Saturday is the Dodgers early morning-late night doubleheader in Aussieland, and Sunday, hopefully it will be back to the Bruins again. I'm hoping for that UCLA-Florida matchup in the regionals, and maybe the Bruins can beat those gators this time. I'm all in for western schools, so go San Diego State, Gonzaga, and the rest of the Pac-12.
This should be a good sign for my basketball viewing. Just days ago, I was wanting to go to San Diego to see the Dodgers' Sunday night opener against the Padres. Now I wish I was going this weekend to see the NCAAs. UCLA, Arizona, Gonzaga, and a pretty good VCU-Stephen F. Austin matchup, with the winner getting the Bruins. Not a bad ticket if you can get it. I'm not going to San Diego anytime soon, anyway. Maybe next year if I win the billion dollars.
Times sure have changed: It used to be that after Selection Sunday, you couldn't wait to get the sports page the next day so you could cut out the bracket, make photocopies, and start filling in your picks. Now you can go online and print the thing, and I haven't even done that yet.
Top o' the mornin' to ya: I know they didn't invent it, but I always associated St. Patrick's Day baseball with the Dodgers. When they trained in Vero Beach, they were always home on March 17, always wore green uniforms and featured green bases. Kinda sad that the Dodgers literally don't have a St. Patrick's Day this year. They were scheduled to leave just before midnight Sunday, and wouldn't land until about 10am Tuesday Sydney time. The Red Sox and other wore green unis today, but somehow it just doesn't seem right.
Baseball down under: Speaking of going online, Dodgers broadcaster Rick Monday passed along a website where you can see the Sydney Cricket Groud, which will host baseball this weekend. As I am typing this, it looks like the Dodgers are holding a workout. The site is www.sydneycricketground.com.au, then click webcams, then SCG Webcam. You get a live still photo, but you can refresh the page as often as you want. Kinda cool.