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March 14, 2005 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-03-14

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6B - The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - March 14, 2005
Michigan Daily/Papa John's Challenge
NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament

First Round
March 17, 18

Second Round
March 19, 20

Regionals ,
March 24-27

Final Four
April 2, 4

Regionals
March 24-27

Second Round
March 19,20

First Round
March 17, 18

1 Illinois
16 Fairleigh-Dickinson
9 N evada : . ... .. ......... . .. ..
5 lbama

Score the most points and receive
10 free pizzas from Papa John's

North Carolina 1

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Oakland/Ala. A&M 16

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Minnesota 8
Iowa State 9

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12 Wisc.-Milwaukee
4 Boston College
13 Penn
6 LSU
11 Ala.-Birmingham
3 Arizona
14 Utah State
7 Southern Illinois
10 Saint Mary's
2 Oklahoma State
15 Southeast Louisiana
1 Washington
16 Montana
8 Pacific
9 Pittsburgh
5 Georgia Tech
12 George Washington
4 Louisville
13 Louisiana-Lafeyette
6 Texas Tech
11 UCLA
3 Gonzaga
14 Winthrop
7 West Vir inia
10 Creighton
2 Wake Forest

Chicago
:::.... h ........

3
s
a
i
3
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s

Villanova 5

Syracuse

New Mexico 12

Florida 4

Ohio 13

Wisconsin 6

..........
-----------------------

Northern Iowa 11
Kansas 3
Bucknell 14
Charlotte 7
N.C. State 10
Connecticut 2

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L. . . .. . . . . .. . . .. . .. .. .. . .

Albuquerque

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.~....

Central Florida 15
Duke 1
Delaware State 16
Mississipi State 9
Michigan State 5
Old Dominion 12,
Syracuse 4

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Austin

Vermont 13
Utah. 6

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UTEP 11

Oklahoma 3

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Niagra 14

-- - - ---- . . .... ......... ..............................

Cincinnati 7
..,Iowa 2Q:
Kentucky 2
Eastern Kentucky 15

15 Chattanooga

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V... ..

Better Pizza.

To be eligible for the Papa John's prize, you
must bring in your completed bracket to
The Michigan Daily (420 Maynard St.) before
the tournament begins Thursday morning.

Your Name
Total Points In
Championship game

E-mail
Phone

I

The first round games are worth one point, two inthe second round, then three, four, five and six for the other rounds.

Fire up your brackets:

It's

Tournament time

Break out the face paint and put on your
dancing shoes. It's the most wonder-
ful time of the year. March Madness
has officially arrived, and the unveiling of the
NCAA Tournament bracket yesterday only
guarantees that
most of us will be
dreaming of upsets-
and Cinderellas
in class this week
until we start skip-
ping altogether on
Thursday, when
all the fun begins
- on St. Patrick's
Day, no less.
Luck struck a
number of bubble
teams that snuck
in during the past Dance Fl
week. Five teams with Josh Hoir

tj

o
n1

will represent the
Big Ten this year, way up from last year's
pitiful total of three. Iowa and Minnesota's
wins in the Big Ten Tournament may have
helped the conference match the ACC's
five teams that made it into the tourney, an
idea that would have seemed laughable at
the beginning of the year. Granted, Iowa's
athletic director is the chair of the selec-
tion committee, but that's a topic best left
to the conspiracy theorists.
In an irony of all ironies, the Notre
Dame Fighting Irish learned that they will
not be playing on St. Patty's Day. But then
again, they lost to Michigan this season, so
let's not waste our time wondering whether
or not they deserved it.
Instead, it's the good teams like Illinois
that always seem to be the lucky ones. The
Fighting Illini finished the season with just
one loss, light years ahead of any of the
other No. I seeds. The selection committee
rewarded them handsomely with a cake-
walk into the Final Four. Assuming they
can handle a legitimate Oklahoma State
team in the Elite Eight, their toughest com-
petition includes Arizona, a team notorious
for choking come tournament time, and

The region also holds the potential for
the most intriguing subplot of the tourna-
ment. North Carolina coach Roy Williams
just might run into his old team if the
Tar Heels and Jayhawks meet in the Elite
Eight, forming about as juicy a
reunion as college hoops could
hope for.
The Albuquerque bracket may
not be as top heavy, but, top to
bottom, it may be the toughest in
all the land. It's loaded with teams
full of momentum - nine of the
teams in the bracket won their
conference tournaments and four
others made it to the final game of
their conference tournament.
Pittsburgh, UCLA and Wake
Forest make up those three left-
or over teams, and they're not exactly
a n pushovers. In fact, Wake Forest
may have the best chance of danc-
ing its way out of that regional and into St.
Louis. It shouldn't have a problem making it
by the No. 1 seed Washington, which won the
Pac-10 Tournament to squeak into the top slot.
The Huskies are a good team, but nowhere
near deserving of a No. 1 seed. They may not
even make it to a matchup with the Demon
Deacons, since they might have to go through
the likes of Georgia Tech or Louisville, two
grossly underrated teams.
If the Cinderella angle is more your
thing, we've got plenty of that. Hair will
be pulled and glass slippers will be fly-
ing toward jugulars when two possible
Cinderellas battle it out in what might be
the best game of the first round. Southern
Illinois and Saint Mary's will square off in
a rare pairing of two mid-major teams in
the opening round in the Chicago bracket.
The Salukis of Southern Illinois already
destroyed its share of brackets, when it
advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2002, while
Saint Mary's is waiting for a chance to
frustrate tournament pool participants.
And since every bracket needs a No. 12
over a No. 5 - and we live in anti-Sparty
territory - why not look to Old Domin-

STAFF PICKS
DESPITE THEIR LOUSY PRESEASON PREDIC-
TIONS, THE BASKETBALL WRITERS MAKE
THEIR FEARLESS PREDICTIONS FOR THE
NCAA TOURNAMENT.
Chicago region winner
Albuquerque region winner
Syracuse region winner
Austin region winner
National Champion
Tournament Most Outstanding Player
Cinderella team
Biggest snub
Most overrated
Best first round game
Biggest first round upset
Best potential matchup
Favorite mascot

0

Oklahoma State
Wake Forest
North Carolina
Duke
Duke
J.J. Redick
Iowa
Notre Dame
Boston College
Pacific/ Pittsburgh
New Mexico
GT/Louisville
Golden Knights

Eric
Ambinder

Megan
Kolodgy
Illinois
Wake Forest
Kansas
Syracuse
Wake Forest
Chris Paul
West Virginia
St. Joes
Illinois
GT/GW
Iowa
Illinois/BC
Mockingbirds

Illinois
Louisville
North Carolina
Duke
North Carolina
Raymond Felton
New Mexico
None
Washington
SIU/St. Mary's
New Mexico
Kansas/UNC
Salukis

Josh
Holman

Ilini win title, coast to top seed

Brian
Schick

Illinois
Wake Forest
North Carolina
Syracuse
North Carolina
Rashad McCants
Iowa
Miami (OH)
Washington
SIU/St. Mary's
UAB
GT/Lousiville
Lobos

CHICAGO (AP) - As top-ranked Illinois
celebrated its Big Ten Tournament title with
the traditional net-cutting ceremony, James
Augustine was trying to figure out what he
was going to eat.
Then in the middle of the euphoria came
an announcement he wasn't expecting: He'd
been voted the MVP of the tournament.
"I was just over there talking to Nick
(Smith) about what was going to be for din-
ner," Augustine said. "He gave me a hard
time, and I had to give a speech. I had no
idea. I was surprised with it."
With Augustine and Roger Powell clog-
ging up the middle for most of the game, the
Illini built a 16-point lead and held on yes-
terday to beat No. 23 Wisconsin 54-43 for
the Big Ten title.
"(Augustine) said, 'I'm so hungry, what
the heck are they going to have in that
room?' He really wasn't thinking about
being the MVP. They're all like that.
They're loose and free and very competi-
tive," said Illinois coach Bruce Weber, who
coached his second straight game following

Illini had held off a late Badgers run.
The Illini didn't shoot well again yester-
day - Dee Brown went scoreless and was
0-for-8 from the field - but they turned up
the defense, especially on Wisconsin scoring
leaders Alando Tucker and Mike Wilkinson.
"We have showed all year we were able to run
with people and go by them," Weber said. "And
at the same time when they make it a slower
game - Wisconsin, that's their style - we're
still able to deal with it."
Tucker, whose 3-point buzzer-beater in the
semifinals carried the Badgers (22-8) over
Iowa, managed just nine points on 4-of-14
shooting but was instrumental in Wiscon-
sin's comeback.
Wilkinson, Wisconsin's second-leading
scorer, also struggled, scoring eight points
on 1-for-7 shooting as the Badgers made only
14 of 54 field goal attempts (26 percent).
Top reserve Zach Morley, who had 40
points in the first two Wisconsin wins, man-
aged five yesterday.
Augustine and Powell helped each other
inside as the Illini doubled whomever had

at Oklahoma City on Friday.
"You can't get too down on yourselves
after a loss. You have to take good with
bad," Tucker said. "We'll look at this, see the
things we can improve on and that's going to
help us down the road."
The Illini went up 16 when Head and Pow-
ell hit 3-pointers and then Head raced ahead
on a fast break for a dunk on a pass from
Brown with 8:42 left.

0

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