Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Play-in Game

What is the deal with the play-in game?

(By the way, the fact that the NCAA doesn't want the world calling it the "play-in game" means we will attempt to say “play-in game” as many times as we can.)

Why do they even have this game? The tournament was fine with 64 teams, why did they have to add this stupid extra game in the middle of the week in Dayton between the two worst teams in the field?

Also, why do automatic bid qualifiers play every year in the play-in game? These teams have “earned” their spot in the actual tournament by winning their conferences. If we are going to have this ridiculous game, why not have the two last at-large teams play for the 64th bid? Last week Niagara and Florida A&M were celebrating their wins in their respective conference tournaments, and were getting ready to be displayed on the national stage against one of the “big boys.” Now one of them isn’t going to get that chance because they are going to lose to another small program in a random play-in game before the official start of the tournament. One day you’re dancing at center court and getting ready for your 40 minutes in the sun as you are slaughtered by Kansas, but just happy to be able to one day tell your kids you shared the basketball court with Brandon Rush, and the next your headed home, with nothing to show for your efforts besides a free trip to Dayton.

And while the NCAA continues to pee on these teams shoes and tell them its raining, the coaches are less than pleased. Niagara coach Joe Mihalich said he was "shocked," and even "insulted" to be placed in the game. Florida A&M coach Mike Gillespie (whose team will be playing in its second play-in game by the way, they won the 2004 play-in game) said tonight's losing team will feel "cheated."

Why not let Stanford and Arkansas play in the play-in game? That way the loser goes home and says to themselves, “you know, we really didn’t deserve to be in the tournament anyway.” And slot the winner in as the lowest ranked 10 seed or something.

All that said, we’ll probably still watch tonight.

(quotes:Palm Beach Post)

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