5:45 PM I spent the end of the second half sitting in the stands with the KSR crew, two rows behind Trent Johnson, who is dealing with the LSU loss to Tennessee, 59-49. It was truly a dreadful game, with Tennessee playing poorly and LSU playing LSU. The last few minutes have been spent arguing with Dave Baker and Kyle Macy about the first round NCAA Game for UK. Dave Baker is claiming that Buffalo may be as close to Lexington as Milwaukee, which means he never watched or played “Where in the World is Carmen SanDiego” in the 1980s and 90s. That type of geographic difficulty made Kyle (not wearing a Christmas sweater) and I mock him, but in a loving way.
The arena is now emptying and the fans will hit the streets of Nashville. The Big Blue Nation was out in full force today, and I expect a record number of people here in the next few days. We all can take a bit of a deep breath now that South Carolina is not the opponent in the next round (although I was never particularly concerned for the Gamecocks on a neutral floor) and Alabama becomes the opponent, a team that UK should be able to handle if it plays up to capability.
Watch the Big 12 games….now with the Syracuse loss, so long as Kansas doesnt lose, the Cats will be in the Syracuse Regional, meaning go ahead and buy tickets now, as it will be a mad scene. If Kansas loses however, the Cats could end up in the St Louis region, which could be an even nuttier scene. Either way, it will be something to see.
Taking a quick break….will return in about an hour. The Big Blue Mist is on its way….
5:10 PM: Not the best picture in the world (ok actually its a terribly blurry picture, but you have to blame MaconVolFan for having the only iPhone in America with a dirty screen), but here is a snapshot of the Alabama dance team. We will make things better tomorrow:
4:59 PM: Are there two more annoying players in America than Stephen Pearl and Scotty Hopson? For totally different reasons, I find myself pulling for their destruction more than any other ballers in the SEC. Pearl seems to exist only to be yelled at by his father, who stands on the sidelines perpetually telling Pearl how awful he is in language that Rick Pitino wouldnt even use at an Italian restaurant. And Hopson plays with all the interest and enthusiasm of Sarah Palin at an economics lecture, keeping a “you know that one game out of five, I am as good as anyone in America”, smirk on his mouth. I dont like either of them.
I do however like staring at the back of Brad Nessler’s head. The man must contribute to at least 23% of the destruction of the ozone layer himself wiht the amount of hairspray that must go into keeping his look. Where others suffer, Nessler conditions, and for that he should be applauded. Vols lead 34-30
4:40 PM: The UK players chilling during the Alabama game:
MATT 4:34 PM: Tennessee and LSU are tied 21-21 at the half. It has been a relatively poorly played game and Tennessee looks totally uninterested to even be in the arena. One does have to wonder however, how does LSU have absolutely no talent besides the tenth year Tasmin Mitchell? John Brady not only left the cupboard bare, he sprayed it down with poison as he walked out the door. Any LSU team with three white guys in at one time is destined for failure. What is not destined for failure is the LSU dance team, which is asking for my support and will receive it.
At the SEC Tournament, they always have an extra referee on standby. I am a big fan of this idea and think it has to be the easiest job in all of sports. Show up, wear the stripes and jsut assume that no one wil get hurt and you will be fine. I am going to request a fill-in blogger for the times that Barry Booker walks by and distracts me. He was of course part of the most awkward moment for SEC Tournament history when we were coming here in the early years. Before I got credentialed, we would come to the games and harass Booker to come and talk to us. One time when he was sitting in the stands with the group, politics came up and my friend Corey asked Booker what party he was in. He said, “I am a Republican” at which point Corey said, “Dont you know you’re black???” We all looked at Corey and wondered how he could be so stupid, when Booker then held up his hands and said, “really, I had never noticed..thanks for telling me.” We then became Booker groupies for life.
Second half beginning….
strong>Kate 4:20: Just thought I’d jump in and add my 2 cents. I’m not having nearly as much fun as Matt as there are no Dave Neals, Devon Downeys, or Alabama dance teams here at work. But nonetheless, I appreciate Matt keeping us up-to-date and allowing us to waste our time refreshing the page in order to live vicariously through him.
One of my favorite writers Jason Whitlock put out a little diddy today about expanding the NCAA tournament (insert groaning). But not expanding it in the way you think. Instead of expanding the number of teams, he proposes expanding the number of games played during the sweet sixteen and beyond so that the matchups become a best of three series.
It’s an interesting read even if you disagree with him (which I do). I think both ideas are terrible and that we shouldn’t try to fix something that isn’t broken. Considering the (arguably) two most popular and exciting postseasons (NFL playoffs and NCAA March Madness) share the common trait of single game elimination, its utter stupidity to change either of the formats. But since the idea of expanding the number of teams is gaining some steam and seems to be on everyone’s minds lately, at least someone is trying to come up with some alternatives.
MATT 4:15 PM: Wireless here in the Nashville arena has gone the way of Doug Gottlieb’s intelligence and seems to have evaporated. So we are doing the best we can until we can get some stuff fixed by tonight. The Travis experience made me miss the amazing comeback by Alabama. Down 18 in the second half, they came back and knocked the Gamecocks out of the Tournament and now give Kentucky a more manageable game tomorrow. UK fans were loudly cheering Bama at the end and attempting to do anything to get the Tide to win at the end. It worked and Anthony Grant’s bunch move on, allowing another day of Alabama Dance Team action.
We have now begun the Tennessee-LSU game and the arena has filled up wiht some orange. Tennessee has asolid showing here, although Kentucky may be right with them, even though the Cats dont play till tomorrow. The most important part of this game has occurred from the Tennessee band, who have a bizarre “BASKET – BALL” chant that they yell during timeouts. IT reminds me of Homer Simpson carrying the little banner that used to say “State” on the “Simpsons.” I cant tell if its ridiculous or brilliant…it could be either.
MATT 3:55 PM: Sorry I have been away. I was just on the radio and it was an exhausting experience with Clay Travis and the Nashville afternoon crew. If you heard it, I hope I represented Kentucky well. I now need a massage. I will be back up and running in the next 20 minutes or so.