Final Four

Mike Dwyer

Mike Dwyer is a former writer and contributor at Ordinary Times.

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30 Responses

  1. Christopher Carr says:

    As crappy as my bracket has turned out to be, let it be known that I did pick Louisville to make the Final Four.Report

  2. J.L. Wall says:

    And now it’s on.

    But… my Lord, did Florida realize in the last few minutes that they had better plans for Spring Break or something?  I’m also pretty certain that neither Kentucky nor Baylor really wanted to play the second half this afternoon.Report

  3. Chris says:

    As Wall says, it’s on!Report

  4. Johanna says:

    Sometimes picking a team just based on the hope they will do well and having it happen is what makes March Madness so much more enjoyable. I often find that by the final four, unless there is a team I actually like or an underdog, I lose interest. Knowing that I am too far off of winning the coveted Mark Thompson gravatar, I’ll be happy to see my pick for winner be wrong.Report

    • Mike Dwyer in reply to Johanna says:

      Well said Johanna – and I feel exactly the same way. I’d rather lose a basketball pool than turn on my team. This year it just happened to work out for me holding on to them.Report

      • J.L. Wall in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

        I had the same thing happen last year with mine — no one else was taking UK over OSU.  It feels really good when loyalty like that is vindicated/rewarded.

        (Just not this year, Mike.  Just not this year.)Report

      • Chris in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

        I won the pool in my department last year because I picked Kentucky to win it all, despite the fact that very few rational people (and I am fully aware that Kentucky fans are anything but rational) did so. It helped that I also had Connecticut in the Final Four (I ended up ranked ~250 overall on ESPN), but without picking based purely on who I wanted to win, I wouldn’t have won all that sweet, sweet Texas-fan money.Report

  5. Burt Likko says:

    Here’s how it ends.

    • If Louisville wins, so does Mike Dwyer.
    • If Kentucky wins, so does Randy Harris. Like he doesn’t win enough trivia games as it is. (I kid, because I’m a kidder.)
    • If Kansas wins, Mark Thompson breathes a great sigh of relief because I’ll win the pool and I’ll be merciful with control of his avatar.
    • If Ohio State wins, it matters who it defeats — Mike Dwyer wins if Lousiville advances, and Randy Harris wins if Kentucky advances.

    Tiebrakers won’t matter. By the way, it’s awesome that two teams with a rivalry play this late in the tournament.Report

    • Mike Dwyer in reply to Burt Likko says:

      “By the way, it’s awesome that two teams with a rivalry play this late in the tournament.”

      Easy for you to say. We’re going to have to put the National Guard on speed dial for Saturday night.Report

    • James Hanley in reply to Burt Likko says:

      I have no chance to win, but I also have virtually no chance of falling out of the top 5.

      (I take my solace where I can.)Report

  6. Chris says:
    • If Louisville wins, so does the devil.
    • If Kentucky wins, so does Truth, Beauty, and Reason.

    There, fixed it for ya.Report

    • Mike Dwyer in reply to Chris says:

      I was thinking that if UK wins it’s a triumph for capitalism. (Money really can buy happiness!)Report

      • J.L. Wall in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

        Better dead than red, you Commie!Report

        • Mike Dwyer in reply to J.L. Wall says:

          I also don’t understand the Devil reference from Chris. Obviously UK made their Faustian bargain when they hired Calipari.Report

          • Chris in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

            I’m pretty sure the school that hires its archrivals ex-coach is the one that’s in league with the devil. It takes some truly evil force to pull that off.Report

            • Mike Dwyer in reply to Chris says:

              Emphasis on EX-coach. Two degrees of separation – that cleans away all sins. If they had stolen Pitino directly from UK, yeah that would be evil. As it was UK seemed pretty happy with Tubby at the time.Report

              • J.L. Wall in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

                I’ve come to realize that I dislike Pitino far more than I do Louisville — and for much the same reason that I harbor so much resentment toward Sammy Sosa.  They betrayed my childhood.  Though there are moments — watching Sosa’s 600th home run, or the Pitino-Donovan interview this weekend — when I catch myself smiling and remembering the good days.Report

              • Mike Dwyer in reply to J.L. Wall says:

                I’ve always been a very casual UL fan and I would root for UK as along as they weren’t playing each other. That went out the window with Calipari coming in and the 2009-2010 team. UK sold out in order to get a championship. Perhaps getting Pitino was questionable, but I like that he builds loyalty in his teams.Report

              • Chris in reply to J.L. Wall says:

                I was at Kentucky when Pitino won a championship, lost a championship game, and then left. I can’t hate him because that championship was a blast, and I’ll never forget being on Euclid as the celebration turned into a riot. On the other hand, I secretly hoped he’d fail miserably at Louisville, because man it stung when he left for the Celtics.

                Mike, as any Kentucky fan knows, except for a few months in 1998, no Kentucky fan was ever happy with Tubby Smith. From that boring-ass offense to his son’s play at point guard, Tubby might not have lasted 3 seasons if he hadn’t won the championship that first year.Report

          • J.L. Wall in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

            Says the guy with Snidley Whiplash as his avatar…Report

  7. BSK says:

    I made a late run and had a great shot if UNC won yesterday.  Alas…Report

  8. MikeSchilling says:

    Graduation rates for basketball players;

    Kentucky: 31%
    Louisville: 38%
    Ohio State: 60%
    Kansas: 73%

    I can see who the devils are.Report

    • Chris in reply to MikeSchilling says:

      It’s hard to graduate players when they’re all going to be drafted in the first round after their fresman season.

      I don’t mind graduation rates of 1 year players, if they go on to make huge bucks (especially if they come back and finish their degrees later). I do mind them if the university is using players and, when they’re done, sending them off without a degree. That’s true evil (and very very common, especially in football).Report

      • Mike Dwyer in reply to Chris says:

        I just hate the idea of building a college program on players that are one-and-done.Report

        • James Hanley in reply to Mike Dwyer says:

          At that point, let’s quit pretending they’re “Student”-athletes.  And let’s just accept the fact that Calipari doesn’t give a shit about college education or he wouldn’t work so hard to get so many one-and-done guys. The guy’s a cancer in college sports. My only consolation if UK wins is knowing the victory will be vacated sooner or later.Report

          • Chris in reply to James Hanley says:

            Mike, I agree with you, but those are the rules, and the NBA set them that way. At this point, players with NBA potential can either: go to college for a year or two and then enter the draft, or go to Europe where they will have to sign a contract for at least a couple years, and then enter the draft when the contract is up. I think the rules should be changed: either go directly to the NBA (the NBA should also have a better feeder league for drafted players who aren’t ready), or make a 2 year committment.

            James, I think Calipari cares about 2 things: the kids and winning. The fact that he advises players to go to the NBA rather than stay suggests he cares more about the former than the latter, though the latter is obviously quite important. I have no problem with him putting the kids first. The same goes for Roy Williams or Krzyzewski, who also get a lot of one-and-dones. This is what the sport has become, and it’s not Calipari’s fault. In fact, Calipari is on record saying that he hates the one-and-done rule.Report

            • James Hanley in reply to Chris says:


              I think Calipari’s record speaks for itself.  There’s little reason to respect the man.  He’s the Rick Neuheisel of college basketball.  It remains to be seen whether, unlike Neuheisel, he can win without cheating.Report

              • Chris in reply to James Hanley says:

                Eh, I don’t know what he’s done that constitutes cheating. He has had two final four appearances vacated, but in one case it was a result of a player dealing with an agent, and in the other it was a player possibly cheating on his SATs before he had committed to Memphis, and who was then cleared by the NCAA to play. And since one and dones are the way the game works right now, I don’t know why people go after Calipari more than any others. Because he’s just better at recruiting the best players? That seems like his job description at this point.Report