If you tell me your bracket is still fine, I’m going to need visual proof. What a wild first week of basketball. The sportsbooks were crazy with bettors cheering both sides of every game. Vegas during March Madness is something all sports fans should experience at least once.
The day started with a back and forth Purdue/Butler game. In typical Vegas fashion, a missed Purdue FT at the end of the game factored into the spread. Butler bettors were in heaven. The Boilermakers pulled off a 3 point win against a 3.5 point spread.
And then the upsets started. The underdog won the next 4 games. Syracuse beat Michigan State by 2 points with the Spartans looking like they didn’t even want to be there. Texas A&M dominated a UNC team that many felt was over-seeded.
Cincinnati looked to have everything under control with a 22 point lead with 10:50 left in the game. Nevada finished the game on a 32-8 run to win by 2 points. Mick Cronin has been at UC for 12 years now. He is 6-8 in the tournament with 1 Sweet 16 appearance. I’m not sure how much longer Bearcats fans will tolerate this.
Next up was Clemson destroying Auburn. This game was never really close. Kansas State beat this year’s Cinderella, UMBC, in a low scoring snoozer. Xavier/FSU showed us another collapse. Xavier had the game in hand all along, including a 12 point lead at one point. FSU fought hard to the end and pulled off the upset. The night finished with WVU easily beating Marshall to advance.
All in all, a great first week to be a basketball fan, especially if you were in Vegas. The ebb and flow of the tournament was on full display. But now the Sweet 16 is set. We have 15 games left, let’s enjoy them while they last.