Before Mick, Troy, Quadri, Jacob, Kyle, Jarron and company get down to business, several inferior AAC teams get to ply their trades for the people of Connecticut.
Here is what will happen:
First Round: Thursday, March 9
Game 1: No. 9 East Carolina vs. No. 8 Temple:
As Down the Drive readers learned in late 2015, ECU has many fine on-campus dining options. The Pirate meal plan receives high marks from ECU students. You can just swipe your card and food will appear. That is if you go to any of their seven, conveniently located on-campus eateries. All seven eateries accept Pirate Bucks as well as many off-campus restaurants, such as CiCi's Pizza Kitchen, Papa John's, TCBY and Burger King.
Temple, conversely, does not serve food on their campus. No CiCi’s Pizza, no Papa John’s and no TCBY for the sad little Owls.
Final Score: East Carolina 81 Temple 77
Game 2: No. 10 Tulane vs. No. 7 Tulsa:
When I think of Tulane and Tulsa’s upcoming game, I think of a visit I made to Williamstown, Vermont a couple years ago.:
In early May 2015, I took a trip north to Williamstown, Vermont in western Orange County. I had dinner plans with an old teacher of mine. She had moved to the quiet mountain town near Barre and Montpelier after retiring from the high school classroom. Shamefully, this was my first visit to her new home. I left plenty early for our five o’clock supper to make sure I arrived on time.
I pulled into Williamstown at five-past four, leaving me more than enough time to explore the town’s main drag before my friend’s casserole came out of the oven. I started my tour of town at the Pump-N-Pantry, Williamstown’s outstanding market/gas station/grinder-shop/ice-cream hot spot. I spoiled my supper at the Pump-n-Pantry with a mammoth Maple Creemee that deserves a capital “M” and a capital “C.” Needing to burn off a few of these newly acquired calories before supper, I followed a sign up a side hill on the outskirts of town to a self-service driving range. I had no idea that such a thing existed, but the system appears to be operating smoothly at this “Bill-Town” location. The driving range consisted of an R2-D2 shaped ball-dispenser, a beautifully mowed meadow, a few yardage markers, and a divinely-ordained Green Mountain backdrop. There is no permanent attendant at the range and there are no range clubs available for unprepared golfers like myself. One of the other golfers at the range lent me his spare driver, enabling me to put on a green-jacket worthy display for the half dozen fellas present.
I drove down the hill of the driving range at 4:30, cranking Elvis Presley’s live renditions of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” and “Dixie” from his Aloha From Hawaii Via Satellite album. As the assembled Hawaiians gave the King a standing ovation, I fell in love with Williamstown’s gorgeous Village Cemetery. Located in the center of town, Williamstown Village Cemetery anchors the town’s main street. Like all great cemeteries, Village Cemetery bestows upon its community the gifts of continuity and stability. Village Cemetery endows the surrounding businesses and town buildings with a sense of permanence. The businesses change. The institutions change. The people change. In their own generations, each one of them gave life to the community. In death, the cemetery’s individual monuments to the deceased citizens of Williamstown who populated the town’s places of business and its civil society form a larger collective monument to the community’s two and a half centuries of life.
The rolling hills of the meticulously-maintained Village Cemetery provide several different vantage points for gazing at the town and its Green Mountain surroundings. Village Cemetery includes a diverse collection of headstones which begin in the late 18th century and continue generation after generation into the 21st century. A number of Village Cemetery’s headstones are unique, including several of the stones featured in the pictures that accompany this article. If you find yourself in Central Vermont this summer, a trip to the Williamstown Village Cemetery is well worth your while.
Final Score: Tulane 81 Tulsa 78
Game 3: No. 11 South Florida vs. No. 6 UConn:
On the outskirts of Waterbury, Connecticut, a great man once told me that “the more outside leaves the chef throws away from a head of lettuce, the better the salad is.”
That man was Andy Rooney, reading to me on a delightful book on tape.
Final Score: UConn 65 USF 61
Second Round: Friday, March 10
Game 4: No. 9 East Carolina vs. No. 1 SMU: SMU head coach Tim Jankovich has a wild, street-wise image, but it’s real. His rough and tumble blues-based rock music comes from a deep seated need to break out of the small-town, small-minded life-style that formed the backdrop to his early days in San Angelo, Texas.
Final Score: SMU 88 ECU 50
Game 5: No. 5 Memphis vs. No. 4 UCF:
“The first instrument I picked up was a badminton racket”- Michael Penn.
Michael Penn appeared in Memphis twice during his 1989 No Myth tour. He has never appeared at the University of Central Florida.
Final Score: Memphis 75 UCF 70
Game 6: No. 10 Tulane vs. No. 2 Cincinnati:
What a pleasure it has been to watch this Bearcats team compete this season. I expect big things this March, but let us not forget all the great memories this club has given us this winter.
Final Score: Cincinnati 71 Tulane 55
Game 7: No. 6 UConn vs. No. 3 Houston
No national title but Phi Slamma Jamma was a way more interesting team than any of the UConn men’s title teams.
Final Score: Houston 91 UConn 84
Semifinals: Saturday, March 11
Game 8: No. 5 Memphis vs. No. 1 SMU:
Praise the Lord and pass the Popsicles! SMU is like Bastion Booger. Memphis is a total J-Brone club this year.
Final Score: SMU 78 Memphis 71
Game 9: No. 3 Houston vs. No. 2 Cincinnati:
My crystal ball says this one will have a familiar look to it.
Final Score: Cincinnati 65 Houston 47
Championship: Sunday, March 12
Game 10: No. 2 Cincinnati vs. No. 1 SMU:
A brief primer on cutting down the nets.
Final Score: Cincinnati 83 SMU 77
As always, this is a work of parody and not intended to be taken seriously. For more of the same, look me up on twitter: @ClaytonTrutor