Archive for the ‘College sports’ Category

March Madness bracket challenge

March 14, 2011

It’s that time of year again, fellow sports fans.

The excitement, the drama, the tears and upsets–all leading up to the big dance. Will you be the one to pick the right teams to shoot their way to the Final Four?

Or are you still feeling the burn from last years mess of a bracket, the bracket barely anyone was able to get through without shock at the outcomes?

Here is your time for redemption.

Once again, Miss Sportaholic is offering the same challenge as last year. Beat the Sportaholic and her friends and you will get a free prize.

What is the prize? Same deal as last year. I have ideas in mind, but leave comments on what type of prize you would like if you win, and if others vote on the best idea, I will consider that and if your idea is the one that gets the most votes you might also win a prize!

Simply click on this link and fill out your bracket.

Yes, it is that easy. And leave a comment after saying what type of prize you would like to win and let the games begin!

Good luck and may the luckiest person win—which we all know in March Madness, luck and blind picks may be your best option.

 

**Don’t forget to check back here for updates on the tournament and the top winners each round.

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Home court dis-advantage for Maryland in 80-62 loss to Duke

February 3, 2011

The University of Maryland Terrapins hosted ACC rival Duke University Wednesday, but highly anticipated hopes for the Terps to win at Comcast Center were dashed as they fell to the Blue Devils 80-62.

The victory gave Duke (20-2, 7-1 ACC) a season sweep of Maryland (14-8, 4-4 ACC).

The Terps upset the Blue Devils last year when playing at home, but Duke’s two stellar players, Kyle Singler and Nolan Smith ran over the Terps on their turf, with both scoring the first 16 points in the second half.

Singler (22 points) and Smith (21 points) were not going to allow Coach K’s team to fall into its first losing streak since 2009 (against UNC and Boston College) after coming off an embarrassing loss to un-ranked St. John’s (93-78) last Sunday.

The first half showed promise for the Terps as they were only down by seven  going into the locker room with the score 40-33 after they cut a 13-point lead by drawing fouls on Duke.

They used their defense and rebounds to their advantage to tighten the score with an “and one” then rebounding on two missed free throws by Miles Plumlee and scoring in the paint once more with seconds left in the half. Their strong defense caused six turnovers by Duke, and using big man Jordan Williams, outscored Duke 18-14 in the post.

The first half was a good run, but the Terps were tiring themselves out thinking too much about how their opponent was steps ahead of them and couldn’t seem to catch up to the drive by the Blue Devils who were 50% in all areas on the court; their three-point opportunities were a big factor as they sunk their shots past the arc.

The Terps kept the game intense for the first 10 minutes of the second half, going on a 9-2 run bumping the score 56-49 and giving them a glimpse at a possible comeback, with  Williams boxing out under the net and giving him a “double-double” game, with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

But it wouldn’t be enough as Singler scored 11 points in a row, and Coach K’s boys hot shooting kept the Terps at bay and with 5 minutes left, took the game away with Duke up 66-54.

Despite foul trouble early on for Duke, the Terps did not seem to be able to connect on their foul shots (were 16 for 23 on the line with five minutes left) and botched up court opportunities, and gave away the rest of the game to their rivals.

 

College basketball legendary coach John Wooden dies

June 5, 2010

One of college basketballs greatest coaches died today, Friday June 5 in the early morning after suffering a massive heart attack among other medical issues over the past few years.

John Wooden, 99, holds the record for one of the most winningest coaches in Division I college basketball. One of the greatest coaches of all time, Wooden’s stats will prove that he not only deserves to be known as such, but his character also is one to remember.

Wooden had 88 consecutive games during the 1971-1974 seasons as well as 38 consecutive NCAA tournament games  between 1964-1974. Wooden to this day holds those records.

Wooden also led the UCLA Bruins to 10 NCAA championships — at one time winning seven in a row — during a 27-year run that ended with his team cutting down the nets one last time in 1975.

Wooden coached basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bill Walton among many others and also had a few Neismith award winners under his regime.

Walton told The Associated Press from the NBA Finals that he last visited with Wooden a few days ago at the hospital.

“He’s the greatest,” Walton said, his voice catching. “We love him.”

(more…)

One UVA lacrosse player found dead; another charged for her death

May 3, 2010

A University of Virginia lacrosse player was found slain in her apartment on May 3.

Yeardley Love, a native of Cockeysville,Md. and an alumna of Notre Dame Preparatory, a Catholic all-girls high school in Maryland, was found dead in her apartment with signs of physical trauma.

Yeardley Love, a senior at UVA, played lacrosse for the school. She was found dead in her apartment May 3. (picture from virginiasports.com)

Another UVA lacrosse player, George Huguely, was arrested earlier today and charged with first-degree murder. Huguely and Love had previously been in a relationship according to witnesses.

Huguely is from Chevy Chase, Md. and graduated from Landon School, Bethesda, Md.

Love’s roommate called police around 2:15 a.m. thinking Love had overdosed on alcohol, but when the police arrived “it was quickly apparent to them that this young lady was the victim of something far worse,”  Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo told The Associated Press.

Love, who was from this area and played lacrosse at NDP, was well-known.

“Everyone is talking about it who has private school ties. It’s a national story but ties back to Maryland,” Jason Miller, a 2000 graduate of Calvert Hall College High School in Towson, said. “Everyone who went to these schools are close and it hits home whether you knew her, her family, went to one of these schools or play lacrosse.” (more…)

Dollar dog day at Towson’s baseball game

April 14, 2010

On April 14, Towson University’s student marketing group held “Dollar Dog Day” for the  baseball team as they hosted Bucknell to promote the game to entice students to attend.

Though the Tigers fell to Bucknell 12-3, the hill was full of students cheering on the team.

Students cheer on the Tigers on the hill of Schuerholz Park

Students cheer on the Tigers on the hill of Schuerholz Park on April 14, 2010.

The Tigers started off the game bottom of the 1st when junior Nick Natoli hit a single to bring in teammate Ben Winter who was on third to make the score 1-0.

In the fifth inning, the score 7-1, designated hitter Steven Rice hit a hard drive to center field that came close to making it over the fence; his double got teammate Austin Harclerode to third where he would soon score for the Tigers before the end of the inning.

But the Bison took over the game with their five homers and ended the game in their favor 12-3.

An exciting game nonetheless as the Tigers played great and had a few K’s to keep the students and fans cheering.

But one of the sports marketing interns came up with the idea to help bring those students to the game–bring people back to ‘the hill.’

Today was dollar hot dog day and they sold out despite having bought over 80 dogs.

More ideas to come for more of the sports from the sports marketing group. Look for information from Doc’s army and on facebook from student groups and student athletes.

And don’t forget that the  Towson ball players will be continuing in the action as they face University of Delaware for a 3-game event this weekend. Good luck, Tigers!

Duke remains the giant on top after defeating Butler in the national basketball championship

April 6, 2010

Duke University has always been one of the top teams in basketball, and on Monday night proved why as they snagged another national championship away from underdog Butler University.

With many people vying for the cinderella team from Indiana to rise up and push the giant off their mountain, Butler pushed hard and played with intensity.

But in the end, Duke overcame Butler 61-59.

The game, though, is what was most impressive.

This is Duke’s head coach Mike Krzyzewski’s fourth national championship. His record of winning that game now stands at 4 of 6. The last time Duke won was in 2001.

Coach K also has a 77-22 record of wins and losses in the tournament, which leaves him with the most wins in the NCAA tourney.

Coach K is also now tied for 2nd in most wins overall in the tournament with Adolph Rupp. The only other coach that is probably one of the best coaches of all time is John Wooden.

Wooden’s UCLA team won 10 national championships in 27 years. Ten in 27 years. Amazing. That is an about 37% winning streak. (more…)

Butler and Duke to battle for the March Madness championship on Monday

April 3, 2010

The Final Four games were played tonight, April 3, with Butler and Duke advancing to the championship to compete against each other on Monday to take home the trophy.

In a classic cinderella team tale, Butler is on the radar and has been since their first game against UTEP.

I know I went back and changed my original bracket and had Butler losing to UTEP that first round. You can bet I am kicking myself now.

But ever since Kansas got knocked out of the big dance by Northern Iowa, I have been pulling for Butler and they have not failed.

Under coach Brad Stevens, Butler has impressed many, including themselves.

Butler head coach Brad Stevens

They have had home city advantage (the last occurance was in 1972 with UCLA who ended up winning the whole championship) and have been compared to the Indiana Hoosiers, made famous by Hollywood in the movie about the team.

Coach Stevens is an impressive 33-year-old smart leader for the Bulldogs. Stevens came into the scene during the 2000-2001 season as a volunteer and was later promoted to full assistant coach the year later.

In the 2007-2008 basketball season, he was named the head coach and after winning 30-games that first season, became the third youngest coach in NCAA history with a 30 game winning season.

The 33-year-old will go head-to-head as he leads his team for the first time to the championship game against one of the biggest and most well-known coaches to basketball players across the country.

Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski

Coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke University BlueDevils has been coaching for 30-years.

He is experienced and knows how to win a basketball game, especially this big game.  It is somewhat interesting that the first year Coach K started coaching, Coach Stevens was only a 3-year old.

Coach K also has led his team to winning three NCAA championships and appearing in 11 Final Fours in those 30-years.

Who to look out for Monday night: (more…)

Breaking down the Final Four teams in the NCAA tournament

March 29, 2010

Out of about 4.8 million people who filled out brackets online at espn.com, only 200 people correctly guessed the Final Four.

Only 200 people.

That is 0.0046% of people were right. Crazy.

And not one person has a perfect bracket.

The last four teams are #1 #5 Michigan State, #5 Butler and #2 West Virginia.

Duke is the only #1 seed left in the tournament. This is the first time they have made it to the Final Four since 2004: it is also the 15th time they made it this far and the 11th appearance under Coach K (only UCLA and UNC have had more trips).

But it was not an easy ride, especially after Sunday’s game against Baylor.

Baylor kept the blue devils on their toes as they went on a 10-3 run in the first half. Baylor, who had 28 wins all season, played a great game. They tied it up against Duke a few times, but couldn’t hold onto the lead as Duke turned 23 rebounds into points and made 15 out of 18 of the games last points.

But give Baylor credit; they held Jon Scheyer pointless all game: not an easy accomplishment from this normally high scoring Blue Devil.

West Virginia, who beat out the young Kentucky team is playing Duke next. The Mountaineers aren’t a team that is willing to let go of a game easily. They fight hard. Tough. Angry. Aggressive.

This is also the first appearance in the Final Four in 51 years for Dub V. Coach Bob Huggins coaches smart basketball. They don’t rush and don’t seem to get phased when their opponents take the lead. The mostly junior and senior cast on this team understand how to end the game in their favor.

The two teams that knocked out many people’s brackets are the other two teams to make it this far. The two #5 teams, Michigan State and Butler have been interesting to watch.

Michigan State somehow manages to sneak into the tournament it seems. They impressively have had six appearances in 12 seasons; how many people expected them to make it this far again?

Mich St. also has made it far without their point guard Kalin Lucas, who tour his Achilles’ tendon in the second-round against Maryland, but the team has pushed through and torn up the court against Maryland, N. Iowa who took out #1 Kansas and beat out Ohio State.

Butler ready to continue the magic to beat Mich State Saturday.

And Butler is the Cinderella story team of the year, and considering this team plays in the same arena as the team in the movie “Hoosiers”, a lot of attention has been put on the team that is six miles away from the arena they are about to play Mich. State.

As I mentioned in my last post, this team has shown a lot to fear and this team will be playing in their home city.

Again, the last team that had that happen was UCLA in 1972–when UCLA also won the whole tournament.

What are some of your predictions for these last few teams? If you could start a new bet with just these four teams, who would you pick?

I might add another contest if people seem interested since this years brackets were so whacked out.

What you need to know in the rest of the mess of March Madness

March 27, 2010

Many of you have already thrown away your brackets.

A few of you have been so embarrassed by how you did, you don’t even want to watch the rest of the games.

“I did something I promised myself I wouldn’t—I looked at my bracket which I haven’t done since the end of the second round. I’m out,” said a loyal follower of the sportaholic, Mark Huber.

Do you feel this same sentiment? Well, don’t feel alone. This tournament brought an immense amount of upsets that there is not one perfect bracket left in America.

Even that autistic kid in Chicago is out after his winning team, Purdue,  lost to Duke last night during the last game of the sweet 16.

But there is no denying the excitement, the energy and craziness this years tournaments have ensued.

I don’t care if you are a basketball fan or not–it is games like these that make even the most anti-sports fan pause and actually get caught up in the yelling from the people standing in front of the TVs.

I think the biggest game so far that had me going nuts was the Kansas State vs. Xavier game. This was the first double over time game played in a sweet 16 in over ten years and the combined points (101-96 = 197) is the second highest amount of combined points in a sweet 16.

This game was intense. There were 17 lead changes. There were 13 ties.

And there was eventually a winner decided about one in the morning on Thursday night.

If you missed this game, I am truly sorry; games like this are why I got so into sports in the first place.

The drama. The energy. The excitement and movement.

The fast acting changing of who might win which changes just as much as the passing of the basketball itself. It is more climatic than any movie you might see in theaters.

If you didn’t at least stop and see why this game was so insane, then you might as well stop reading now.

Because a game like that is the best way anyone can ever get involved in sports.

The rest of the elite 8 games are set, and some have already been played. Here are some key points to remember while watching the last half of the NCAA tournament. (more…)