Eight (EIGHT!) B1G Men’s basketball teams were selected to the 2019 NCAA Tournament following Michigan State’s thrilling (as soon as the replays are done) 65-60 win over Michigan. And reader, there are some doozies coming up this weekend. Michigan State and Michigan are 2-seeds in the East and West regions, Purdue is the 3 seed in the South, Maryland is the 6 seed in the East, Minnesota and Iowa are the 10 seeds in the East and South, Ohio State seeded 11th in the Midwest, and Oregon is the 12 seed that people will expect to easily take down the somehow 5th-seeded wisconsin in the South. After a quick glance at the brackets, 3 things jumped out right away:
1) 3 B1G teams in the bottom half of the East? Really? Come on, guys. I know that 8 teams are a lot, but there’s really no reason for a 2nd-round conference matchup. And I’m not just saying that because it’s Minnesota-Michigan State.
2) One of the host sites for the first two rounds is Des Moines. And Iowa’s reward for making the tournament is...a trip to Columbus to face Cincinnati? While Wolverines, Sparty, and my Gopher brethren invade your fair state? I laughed.
3) BUT NOT AS HARD AS I LAUGHED AT MINNESOTA FACING LOUISVILLE! Nicely done, NCAA. You can try to deny it as much as possible, but I know you did it on purpose. The glint in your eye while talking about the Pitino Bowl (sans 1 Pitino) gives it away.
4) So none of the B1G teams were ever in any danger of becoming a 1 seed, huh? I’ve already heard a couple people ask what the point of conference tournaments is if teams like MSU, Auburn, Iowa State, and Nova aren’t going to get bumps from performance. And my response is GAMBLING! Get out there and be a degenerate! Also, it’s a last-chance for teams to earn their way in by either winning a couple games (THANK YOU AGAIN PURDUE!) or the whole shooting match. If you want to move up instead of in, you had 4 months to work on that.
5) DO NOT LOSE TO IOWA STATE, OHIO STATE!
6) Seriously, go Ducks. You’re a 12-seed, and wisconsin is an overratred 5 seed. Do what you’re supposed to do here.
7) I do not like Maryland-Belmont from the B1G standpoint. And not just because Maryland would be better of getting coached by a bunch of baby turtles inside a suit.
8) Purdue...do something. Seth Davis picked you to get to the Final Four. Go out there and make it look like he’s not a complete idiot for at least one weekend, OK?
As always, I look forward to being corrected in the comments. Or if you’d prefer, you could talk about how Indiana and Nebraska are going to face off for the NIT title! It’s kinda up to you!
(10) Minnesota vs. (7) Louisville 11:15 - CBS - Des Moines, IA
(15) Bradley vs. (2) Michigan State following 1st game - CBS - Des Moines, IA
(11) Temple/Belmont winner vs. (6) Maryland following 1st game - truTV - Jacksonville, FL
(15) Montana vs. (2) Michigan following 3rd game - TNT - Des Moines, IA
(14) Old Dominion vs. (3) Purdue following 3rd game - TBS - Hartford, CT
(10) Iowa vs. (7) Cincinnati 11:15 - CBS - Columbus, OH
(12) Oregon vs. (5) wisconsin following 1st game - TBS - San Jose, CA
(11) Ohio State vs. (6) Iowa State following 3rd game - TBS - Tulsa, OK