Well, the first round of the greatest 3 week sporting event in the nation is in the book and while we didn't see a ton of upsets, we did see some great basketball. Here's what I've learned so far:
* Oliver Purnell is a horrific tournament coach. John Belien, a terrific coach in his own right, handed Ollie his lunch on Thursday, as Purnell completely botched the ending of the game v. Michigan. He is still winless in the NCAA Tournament. I guessing he's going to stay that way.
* Staying on the coaching theme, Fran Dunphy's Temple team came up short. I love the job Dunphy does in the regular season, but good God man - win a tournament game sometime will ya? Yes, I always end up picking Penn, and now Temple to upset someone, I'm always disappointed.
* I should have believed in Cleveland State - and Rutgers should have believed in Gary Waters. Granted, he didn't have much success at Rutgers, but compared to Fred freaking Hill, he's John Wooden. Rutgers basketball - a century of ineptitude.
* Siena's Ronald Moore huge balls - Sam Cassell style huge balls.
* I learned to remember how good an NCAA tournament win is - as SU easily dispatched Stephen F. Austin.
* The Big 12 had the best first round, going 6-0. The Big East put in a strong performance at 6-1, God only knows what happened to W. Virginia. The much vaunted ACC went 3-4 and the SEC should stick to football.
* I learned that even in a loss, North Dakota State's Ben Woodside is really good.
* And I learned that drinking beer for 12 hours while watching hoops is awesome, until the next day. Actually I already knew that........
I'm planning on doing a live chat tomorrow for Syracuse's game against Arizona State - so feel free to drop in.