I’m a guy who knows
his strengths – and I’ve tried to stick with them in breaking down
what I see as the most interesting first round match-ups.
Mid-Major no more:
(7) Southern Illinois vs.
(10) Saint Mary’s
Two teams from conferences that are starting to earn the respect
they so richly deserve. The Missouri Valley got three bids this
season and the WCC garnered two, proving not only that there are
good teams outside the six or eight power conferences, but also
that their hard work is paying off.
Southern Illinois is inching closer to Gonzaga status
– no more of that Cinderella garbage. Keep in mind that the Salukis
have had three different coaches in the last three years without
missing a beat with four straight at-large bids. And it’s not like
they proved a poor choice either. In both 2004 and 2003 they lost
their first round games by a single point and in 2002 they made
it all the way to the Sweet Sixteen before falling to Connecticut.
This will be a fun game to watch but you have to like the Salukis’
experience. Read More >>