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Saturday's List of 13: Random thoughts with weekend here.......
13) How much money is enough? That’s a big question being asked now in these coaching searches; when a mid-major pays a guy $1M+ a year and he is happy and winning there, why would he uproot his family, move halfway across the country to rebuild a program in a harder league with worse players than he has at the mid-major?
A school like Minnesota is a small fish in a very large pond; no successful mid-major coach with an ounce of sense would go there unless he’s unhappy where he is now. You lose 2-3 years in a row, you're fired.
12) Then there’s UCLA, whose expectations are so stupidly high that no one they want will listen to them. They should hire Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to coach the team, be the face of the program, as long as he hires a veteran tactician to be his “bench coach” and a couple younger recruiters to bring in players. If Wake Forest had fired Jeff Bzdelik, he would’ve been ideal for the tactician role.
11) If UCLA wants former assistant Mark Gottfried as head coach, it won’t be cheap; he has a $3.25M buyout at NC State, which may be one of the few places where the expectations are as dumb as they are in Westwood.
10) Buster Posey/Justin Verlander signed lucrative extensions Friday. Giants have so much money tied up in Posey now you wonder if they’ll move him to first base to extend his career as a hitter. Catchers tend to fade out quicker than other position players.
9) According to Forbes Magazine, which I quote a lot but have never actually read, the average major league franchise is now worth $774M.
8) Maine Black Bears were 12-20 this year, are 23-36 last two years; their claim to fame is beating Florida Gulf Coast in December, but word comes out that Justin Edwards, their best player, wants to play “at a higher level” of Division I and will transfer out of Maine, similar to what Seth Curry did when he bolted Liberty for Duke a couple years ago. Edwards scored 16.7 ppg this year; curious to see where he winds up.
7) Louisville 77, Oregon 69-- Russ Smith has gone from Russ-diculous to Russ-tacular; he had 31 here. Game with Duke Sunday should be fun.
6) Michigan 87, Kansas 85, OT-- Jayhawks led 68-54 with 6:51 left; at no point watching this game did I think they would lose. Going to be a long summer for Bill Self. .
5) Duke 71, Michigan State 61-- Good thing Blue Devils pilfered Seth Curry from Liberty; he had 29 in this one. Duke bench took one shot.
4) Florida 62, Florida Gulf Coast 50-- Eagles led by 11 early on, but they turned ball over 20 times. Gators were too quick on perimeter, too big inside, just too good. Quite a run by FGCU, though, a fun team to watch.
3) "I think the referees got the calls right. I don't think it was a hard foul. I think the one involving LeBron against [Carlos] Boozer, that was flagrant. I think the officials got it right. I think that it's almost embarrassing that LeBron would complain about officiating." Celtics GM Danny Ainge, for whatever reason discussing the Miami-Chicago game this week
2) "Danny Ainge needs to shut the f--- up and manage his own team. He was the biggest whiner going when he was playing and I know that because I coached against him." Pat Riley, responding in a statement to Ainge's criticism of Lebron James. Riley doesn't like the Celtics much.
1) For what its worth, the Celtics play in Miami April 12.
Sorry for the late post. Not crazy with todays games for the most part but this is what I like for now. As always buying the point even though got killed by 1 point on 3 different games yesterday. See the picture above, just how I felt.
Sunday's List of 13: Wrapping up a sports Saturday.......
13) Steve Alford to UCLA? Wow. He gets $2.6M a year for seven years and his son Bryce, who scored 37 ppg in high school this year, gets an upgrade from playing in the Pit to Pauley Pavilion, while still playing for his dad. So UCLA wins the press conference, hiring a famous name to replace the fired Ben Howland, who made it to three Final Fours in ten years.
12) Like we said, Howland made it to three Final Fours in Westwood; he won the Pac-12 regular season this year, was 25-10 and he got canned. There are significant expectations involved with coaching the Bruins. Alford seems to be a good coach but his record in the NCAAs is 5-7. Uh-oh.
11) Alford is hoping his assistant coach Craig Neal replaces him with the Lobos, since New Mexico has everyone back next year and figures to win the Mountain West again. New Mexico gets tremendous crowd support and they recruit well, so its a good job that also has high expectations.
10) Alford recently signed a 10-year extension at New Mexico, but these days, contracts don't mean much-- the extension was going to start Monday, but instead, New Mexico is looking for its new coach, and Alford is house shopping and then recruiting. Coaching is an interesting profession.
9) Wichita State has six players who played JC basketball; all three of their assistant coaches also once worked at junior colleges.
8) Not sure why, but it bothers me when TV announcers call Syracuse "the 'cuse". So many of ESPN's play-by-play guys went to Syracuse, can't help but think they get preferential treatment from the media. Lets see how the media deals with it when they go on probation soon, and they are going to go on probation, if half of what is being written is true.
7) All minor league baseball players have to wear the two-flap batting helmets now, but major leaguers don't have to.
6) One of these years, would be nice if A's didn't open the season with the Mariners, so they didn't have to see Felix Hernandez in the opener. In 2012, they played Seattle over in Japan, so they had to face Hernandez in both the first and third games. Not the best planning there.
5) It never ends: a horse ran at Golden Gate Saturday: Trust in Tebow.
4) Kevin Kolb gets $13M for two years from Buffalo; what has this guy done to keep getting paid so much money?
3) Syracuse 55, Marquette 39-- Eagles shot 22.6% from floor. Gardner was 6-9, rest of team was a miserable 6-44. Marquette played scared.
2) Wichita State 70, Ohio State 66-- Shockers led 53-33 with 11:30 left in game, hung on for dear life to become first #9 seed to make Final Four in 64-team era of tournament. Penn was a #9 seed that made it back in 1979.
1) Its a cold world; weird seeing Johan Santana getting released in many fantasy baseball leagues, and knowing no one will pick him up.
And to close out the Elite 8 here are a couple more. Have Louisville and Florida in futures from back in November so there is not much of a reason to even play those games but I do like Louisville to advance and would be totally surprised if Duke wins the game. Buying the point once again.