NCAA Tournament, Regional Finals, Day 8 open thread
by Bob Timmermann
Two more games today and then no basketball (except for the NIT and CBI) until Saturday. And I'll be in Kauai then. But there will still be a thread.
11:20 am - #2 Texas (31-6) vs #1 Memphis (36-1) at Houston (South) - The winner of this game faces UCLA Saturday. Both teams had easy first round games, tough second round games because of poor foul shooting, and then easily won their regional semifinals.
Memphis has lost in regionals the last two years: in 2006 to UCLA and in 2007 to Ohio State. Texas last went to the Final Four in 2003 when they won a regional final against Michigan State in San Antonio. Texas lost a regional final to LSU in 2006. Memphis was a national runnerup in 1973 and also made the Final Four in 1985. The Tigers lost in a regional final in 1992 to Cincinnati.
If the game gets close, I think Texas is behind in the final seconds, Longhorns coach Rick Barnes should run this play.
2:05 pm - #10 Davidson (29-6) vs #1 Kansas (34-3) at Detroit (Midwest) - The Wildcats, behind the superhuman shooting of Stephen Curry are the tournament's last Cinderella team, but they have to face a #1 seed in Kansas that appears to be playing its best basketball of the year. The winner of this game faces North Carolina.
The Wildcats are the first team from the Southern Conference to play in a regional final since VMI in 1976. VMI beat Tennessee and DePaul before losing to Rutgers in the East final that year. Davidson played in a regional final in 1969, losing to North Carolina.
Kansas is playing in its 18th regional final. They are 12-5 in these games, but have lost the last two, in 2004 to Georgia Tech and in 2007 to UCLA.