Four No 1 Seeds Reach Final Four, How Quaint!

It had never happened before, but for 2008, history is made as the four number one seeds all advance to the NCAA Basketball Tournament Final Four in San Antonio. The unprecedented event was assured when Kansas overcame a pesky Davidson team and three hyper officials to join Memphis, North Carolina and UCLA in the premier event in sports.

While I picked two final four teams (UCLA, Memphis) to lose in their regional finals, no one can consider this Final Four a surprise. Certainly not CBS analyst Clark Kellogg who has picked all the No. 1 seeds since the Civil War, so he was bound to be right one day!

North Carolina and Memphis were certainly the most impressive teams this weekend. Carolina is led by Tyler Hansbrough who is an unusual player to be sure. He is the best player in all of college basketball, but he's probably the worst athlete in his dorm in Chapel Hill. Memphis has three lottery picks on its team including the guy who is the ongoing fantasy of every New York Knicks fan, Derrick Rose. This is one special player which means he won't end up in New York as long as Isaiah Thomas is making the decisions. But if he was old, slow and overtime, my favorite team would surely pursue him!

Still the Best Event

I long questioned if the NCAA Final Four was as great an event as many had hyped it to be. My skepticism ended in 1994 when I spent the weekend in Charlotte as the Gators first joined the bourgeoisies of college basketball at the Final Four. Walking into the Charlotte Coliseum and seeing the gigantic Florida banner hanging from the rafters still ranks as one of the most special moments I have ever had in sports. Then of course there was the trip to 2000 in Indianapolis and watching the Gators coming up short in the final with Michigan State.

Two NCAA titles followed and that makes it east to conclude this event is everything it's cracked up to be. But this year is really the proof. No, I'm not going to San Antonio to watch the four No. 1 seeds fight it out, but my interest level in every outcome has not been changed by Florida absence from the field of 65.

The NCAA Tournament and its conclusion, the Final Four is still the greatest event in all of sports. And that won't change as long as college administrators continue to genuflect at the feet of their bowl game masters and deny us a football playoff.

Questions or comments? Contact FightinGators.com's Larry Vettel


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