Tourney Log: Pt 1 (10:50 update)

Arizona does not play until Friday, but that does not mean there isn't plenty of excitement. Nothing is better than the first rounds of the Tourney and here is a look at some of the action.

9:10 a.m.: I am in the car listening to the Westwood One broadcast of the Tournament. You may be wondering why I am in the car and not watching games live. Simple: High Def. I have a nice, big television, but thanks to DirectTV I cannot get my local channels in High Def from where I live. Because of that, I must go to John Schuster's (my radio cohort) house so I can watch his brand new Panasonic 50" Plasma TV. My TV may be 54" but I do have a touch of television envy.

9:12 a.m.: The hottest coaching free agent on the West Coast, former Stanford coach Mike Montgomery is breaking down the Sacramento Pod.

9:18 a.m.: It's old Pac-10 coach day on the radio. Bill Frieder is calling the Maryland/Davidson game. Will Walt Hazzard be calling games in New Orleans?

9:19 a.m.: For all you Dave Libby haters out there he is in Buffalo officiating, nowhere near the Wildcats or New Orleans.

9:26 a.m.: The radio broadcaster just called Rick Pitino, "our" Rick Pitino.

9:27 a.m.: What did Stanford do to piss off the selection committee? I know they were one of the last teams in, but they not only have to play at 9:40 in the morning, but they have to play sixth seeded Louisville less than an hour away from their home court. How does a six seed play closer to home than any of the one-seeds?

9:40 a.m.: When I leave my car in the parking lot of Casa de Schuster the Cardinal are down 6-2. By the time I get to his apartment, about a three minute walk, the Cardinal are down 12-2.

9:41 a.m.: Two words sum up the NCAA in High Def: AWE and SOME!

9:46 a.m.: You'd think that Stanford, being a Pac-10 team, would be used to athleticism. After all they play Oregon, Arizona, USC and UCLA, but they look completely baffled by the quickness of the Cardinals.

9:47 a.m.: For the record it is the plural CardinalS of Louisville versus the singular Cardinal of Stanford.

9:50 a.m.: Despite their 1600 SAT scores, the Cardinal are playing stupid. They are taking bad shots, making bad passes and getting killed by Louisville.

9:51 a.m.: By the way shouldn't Maryland's D.J. Strawberry and Stanford's Landry Fields play on the same team?

10:02 a.m.: Like to shoot three pointers? Maybe you should go to Davidson. 4:00 left in the first half and they have taken 17 three pointers.

10:03 a.m.: Make it 18 three pointers for the Wildcats.

10:13 a.m.: Uh, McDonald's does not look good in HD. You can really see the grease and pickle slime.

10:20 a.m.: I just learned that the Lopez twins are artists. Robin, is the drawer and painter. In fact he draws on his shoes. It looked like he spent more time drawing than practicing.

10:37 a.m.: Thanks to 11-year old point guard Stephen Curry, Davidson leads by eight. Curry may not be old enough for junior high, but he can ball. Of course, when your dad is Dell Curry you should be able to ball.

10:39 a.m.: If BYU can refuse to play on Sunday can the Pac-10 refuse to play a game at 9:40 across the country?

10:50: Nate "Lifelongcatsfan" Ratey just showed up with lunch. This log entry is brought to you by Quiznos.

11:00 a.m.: Maryland's Osby has come off the bench to spark the Terrapins, This is even more impressive considering that he was voted off American Idol last night. If that was not funny to you, ask your wife or girlfriend.

11:01 a.m.: Thanks to HD I have seen razor burn on Seth Davis' neck and now I see a six inch scratch on a Davidson player's pecs. Maybe HD gives us a little too much information.

11:17 a.m.: Boston College is the first team to officially advance in the Tournament, although Louisville pretty much knew they were advancing about 5:00 into their game.

11:18 a.m.: Maryland hits a huge three to go up seven. This was a one-possession game a moment ago.

11:26 a.m.: Maryland wins by 11 in a game that was close until the end. It was not indicative of the way the game went.

11:35 a.m.: Oral Roberts looks more like a third seeded basketball team than Washington State does. The Cougs look like an Ultimate Frisbee team that got lost and wound up in Sacramento.

11:37 a.m.: What have I learned from today's commercials? Apparently an elephant can steal your credit card and use it all over town without anyone questioning why a pachyderm is buying cold medication.

11:48 a.m.: Greg Brady just knocked down two foul shots for Washington State.

11:55 a.m.: Belmont just banked home a three pointer and lead Georgetown 9-4. Just for your knowledge I picked Georgetown for the Final Four, but will be rooting for Belmont.

12:01 p.m.: Schu has about four CBS channels on his cable system and all of them switched from the Washington State game. He checked the CBS HD feed, the CBS East Coast feed and the CBS Midwest feed. None of them were showing the game. I ask Schu if he checked the normal, local feed and sure enough there are the Cougs.

12:21 p.m.: Bulter's Graves shoots 96% from the stripe and is second in the nation in foul shooting. If 96% is second, who leads the nation?

As if on cue, he misses a foul shot after the announcers talk about how good he has been.

12:32 p.m.: Old Dominion has a 7-3 Australian center. I don't think he's any good, but 7-3 is 7-3.

12:35 p.m.: I just realized that ODU and ORU are both playing right now. OSU plays later this evening. Too bad Oregon State and Oklahoma State are not in the Tournament, or this could get confusing.

12:48 p.m.: ORU has a guy named Ken Tutt. Say that fast and see if you can avoid thinking of the old Steve Martin skit.

12:59 p.m.: Washington State is on a 3-on-1 break and I am not sure they know what to do. They actually back it out, set up the offense and score the bucket.

1:05 p.m.: Two things they apparently do not have in Pullman: Tattoo parlors and barbers. None of the WSU players on the court have a visible tattoo or has short hair. From their complexion I think sunshine may be at a premium as well.

1:08 p.m.:For get Nike and Adidas, Washington State sports uniforms by Russell Athletic.

4:22 p.m. Turn on the television right in the middle of a 9-0 Duke run. If I haven't told you, I hate Duke.

4:26 p.m.: Collison's sprained ankle may be an issue. The Weber State PG just drove the lane on the first possession.

4:30 p.m.: Josh Shipp's bucket gives UCLA a 4-2 lead. Not exactly a scoring exhibition.

4:38 p.m.: Marquette has yet to score almost 8:30 into the game. I know MSU can play defense, but how do you go almost nine minutes without a bucket? Right now Marquette has scored as many points as Daniel Dillon will against Purdue.

4:43 p.m.:Marquette finally scores. MSU leads 14-3. 4:57 p.m.: In 14 minutes Marquette has scored 12 points. Still not great but at least they are on pace for about 35 now.

4:58 p.m.: I have not seen it, but just heard that a Michigan State player just dislocated his elbow. That can't be good.

5:01 p.m.: Weber State was trading blows with UCLA but the Bruins have taken it to the Wildcats.

5:05 p.m.: I just noticed the Bill Simmons on is doing his Diary. I knew it wasn't an original idea, but I didn't know he'd be doing well.

5:05 p.m.: Back-to-back threes in transition by VCU have just tied the game with Duke! The Rams were down by 13, but have battled back. VCU looks more athletic.

5:10 p.m.: VCU throws a baseball pass with 2.4 seconds left in the half. A Duke player intercepts it and I swear it took about four or fives seconds for the buzzer to sound.

5:11 p.m.: Worst seed to be today? The 11. I think they lost by a combined 49 points.

5:15 p.m.: So Brook Lopez looks like he is going pro. I can't blame him as he will go top-10, but he should stay another year.

5:19 p.m.: I am already sick of the Singular guys and the Pontiac commercials. The two Singular guys have been around about three campaigns too long.

5:23 p.m.: All of the other games are at the half, so all that we have to watch is the Ohio State route of Central Connecticut State. 5:32 p.m.: According to the local CBS affiliate I am watching Duke TECH vs. Virginia Commonwealth. I am sure the Dookies will love being called a Technical school. 5:43 p.m.: Duke getting an iffy charge call? Where is Shane Battier?

5:49 p.m.: This is a very anti-Duke crowd in Buffalo. Gotta like that.

VCU is just missing too many easy buckets. They are only down seven, but it should be closer than that if they can just put home the gimmies.

6:00 p.m.: Who would have thought that by transferring from the Pac-10 to Virginia Commonwealth would help a player get to the Tournament? That is what happened to Will Famini, a former Sun Devil.

6:10 p.m.: Back-to-back threes, part of an 11-3 run, and VCU is back within a bucket. They are more athletic than Duke.

6:17 p.m.: Hey, it is a Lance Thomas sighting! Even though Duke is in the same boat as UA, I think he'd have played a bigger role for the Wildcats this year, but may have hampered the development of Jordan Hill.

6:32 p.m.: A big time floater gives VCU another lead. On the way down the Ram player hits Duke's John Scheyer and cuts him open. We've had more blood tonight than a Ric Flair/Dusty Rhodes cage match from the 80's.

6:34 p.m.: This is a great finish. Duke ties it, and VCU comes back down and attacks. VCU is a great defensive team. I hope someone tapes this and shows it to the Wildcats. They are aggressive, athletic and intense.

6:35 p.m.: Josh McRoberts misses the first of his two foul shots, and Duke will have to foul the Rams. It is a one-point game with 16.0 left.

6:36 p.m.: Michigan State beats Marquette. I have missed my first game on my bracket.

VCU only makes one of two and Duke's DeMarcus Nelson drives the length of the court to tie it with only token pressure by VCU.

6:37 p.m.: VCU's Maynor answers. He hits his third bucket.

6:39 p.m.: Down goes Duke!!! This is already a good tournament.

8:01 p.m.: Yeah, I know the log missed most of the first half of the late games. I started to make a quick dinner and it became a big production. I was able to keep an eye on the games. In that time we have seen Wright State fall behind 13-0, battle back to take the lead and go back down 13 at the half.

UNC looked like they were going to roll, but Eastern Kentucky has battled back.

8:02 p.m.: Indiana's Wilmont is on fire. He is just bombing from the outside. Unless D.J. White starts to get involved, the Hoosiers are going to have to ride the guy.

8:15 p.m.: Let's see, we have Wright State, Long Beach State and Weber State, none of which are obviously states. Of course Memphis used to be Memphis State, but they eventually realized that they are a city, not a state.

8:19 p.m.: Jeremy Pargo has his last name shaved into the side of his head, but that is not the big news. More importantly is that 16 seed Eastern Kentucky is within four of UNC.

8:22 p.m.: Some things never go out of style. Indiana's white and red stripped warm-up pants. Sure they look like they should be working at the circus, but they are just too classic to get rid of, no matter how out of style they have become.

8:24 p.m.: CBS switches to the Eastern Kentucky/North Carolina game and the Tar Heels quickly score three straight points.

8:26 p.m.: Since CBS switched over Eastern Kentucky has gotten very careless with the ball and UNC is now on a 5-0 run.

8:31 p.m.: An Ainge starring for BYU? That's never happened before. That is like a Vick at Virginia Tech.

8:32 p.m.: Wait, Sean Miller is coaching at Xavier? I thought he had eligibility left at Pitt. Isn't he on the Richard Midgley plan?

8:34 p.m.:I swear BYU's Lee Cummard just teleported out of nowhere for a tip-in bucket. One moment a missed shot is falling into the arms of a Xavier player, the next it is getting tipped in.

8:36 p.m.: This is what an 8/9 game is all about. Two-point game, 24.5 seconds left and two even teams.

8:37 p.m.: BYU gets two looks at it, but fail to send it to overtime. Ainge misses, but the BYU center gets the board. His put back is too hard. Xavier will shoot foul shots.

8:39 p.m.: BYU chokes. After Drew Lavender made both of his free throws, the Cougars needed to come down, shoot a quick three and foul Xavier. Didn't happen. Ainge takes a lot of time, drives the lane, loses the ball and by the time they gather it up they have less than three seconds left. There is no reason Ainge should be attacking the lane. You got to get the quick shot.

8:48 p.m.:The Wilmont kid from Indiana just put a dagger in the heart of Gonzaga. The Zags hit a three to make it an eight-point game, but Wilmont just hit a three of his own and the lead is 11 with 2:00 to play. By the way, the Hoosiers' Earl Calloway looks like he is 55. I think he played in the ABA, changed his name and re-enrolled in college to prolong the career.

8:50 p.m.: Remember when Eastern Kentucky was putting a scare into UNC? That seems like a distant memory as the Tar Heels lead by 21.

9:00 p.m.: The first day of the Tournament was good, but not great. Take the Duke game and the BYU/Xavier game off the board and the last second heroics were non-existent. There were a lot of games that were good for about 35 minutes, but that is about it.

I think Friday will make up for it. We got a lot of good games, and entertaining teams.

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