Monday, May 30, 2005

NCAA Outrage

The New Orleans Regional is out. And I am completely disgusted with the NCAA:

(1) #1 Tulane v. (4) Southern
(3) ULL v. (2) Alabama

The winner of this region gets the winner of the Baton Rouge Regional- which features, of course, LSU.

This is what the Wave busted its hump all year for? The tournament’s overall top seed gets rewarded with this draw? Honestly, how many games would Tulane have to win to not draw LSU before the World Series? Would one million do? If the moon plunged into the sun- would we then get to play a team other than an arch-rival.

If, as the #1 national seed, you are supposed to draw the "easiest path" to Omaha- well, I guarantee that path ought not include having to play the Tigers. Yes, I know on paper LSU looks like one of the weaker #1 seeds in the draw- but we all know, both Wave and Tiger fans, that is a hard series for both clubs- should they both advance. The top seed ought not to have to navigate an emotional, tough series with its blood rival at a semi-neutral site to advance. Period.

Genuinely, I would love to know the last number one overall seed in this tournament had to play its projected Super Regional opponent at a site guaranteed to draw many fans from both sides. I mean, I suppose Tulane can be forced to play at Zephyr as opposed to Turchin- or play LSU before Omaha- but both? That simply is not right.

Plus, our immediate draw is deceptively difficult. I guarantee Southern is not the 64th-best team in this tournament. Would it have killed them to send Harvard here, for instance, as opposed to Fullerton? Screw the RPI. I promise, if Southern played Harvard ten times, they’d win seven more often than not.

Then ULL too- and Alabama? ULL has bounced around the Top 25 all year long- and the Tide is a quality team from the nation’s best league. This is supposed to be the weakest grouping- and yet it is positively scary. I know this is a “regional” set up- and the southern regions are always going to be "strong" versus the rest of the country- but come on. I guarantee had Ole Miss been the top seed, they would not be looking at this sort of draw.

I swear to heaven, I was delighted Sunday when I heard LSU was getting to host a regional. I promise you that selection committee would have sent that LSU team to Turchin right quick as a #2 for the Regional- if they could have gotten away with it.

I also think it stinks that this tournament has been arranged so that only one Louisiana team has a chance to make it to Omaha. Poor Southern. Win their league. Embarrass LSU in their house. And their reward is a date with the #1 team in the country. Ouch. Unreal. If I were a Jaguar fan, I’d be blogging how many games we had to win to avoid an early date with Tulane?

At least no one can complain the Wave does not deserve it if they make it to Omaha.