The Saints took control of the NFC South with a 28-10 victory over the Panthers last night, their first win in Carolina since 2011. New Orleans enters a three-game home stretch with a 4-4 record, while Carolina (3-5-1), which only has one win in its last seven games, travels to Philadelphia in 10 days.
Kentucky, the preseason No. 1 that entered the Big Dance unranked, has reached the Final Four as an eight seed. The Wildcats will face Wisconsin, which upset top seed Arizona in a thriller.
Tonight, the No. 1 overall seed takes on a team once ranked No. 1 and now playing its best basketball. On one side is Louisville, the favorite when the field was announced, trying to keep the national championship trophy in the state of Kentucky.
To measure the unpredictability of this year’s NCAA Tournament, consider two items that didn’t make this column: Gonzaga, a 32-win team on a 15-game win streak, didn’t survive the first weekend, and Harvard, a 14 seed, won its first ever Tournament game.
Yesterday was a relatively drama-free Selection Sunday. Joe Lunardi was a perfect 68 for 68, as Middle Tennessee State, St. Mary’s, Boise State, and La Salle claimed the final spots in the field. Louisville, Gonzaga, Kansas, and Indiana earned the top seeds.
Hoops fans, rejoice: it’s March! The madness was evident this past weekend, as several highly-anticipated matchups — Duke-Miami & Michigan-Michigan State, just to name two — went down to the final possession. The first poll of the month may provide yet another new No. 1. With several conference tournaments set to begin, this wild season is about to kick into an extra gear.
There wasn’t an abundance of wild finishes this weekend, but there were some incredible individual performances (see below). Memphis, mentioned in this week’s column, is one of five teams unbeaten in conference; another, Gonzaga, has won its last six games by an average of 24 points.