Gone are the days when March Madness was all about college fun and teenage. The NCAA basketball 2012 tournament has transcended these teenage levels and has become a more serious, more professional and extremely competitive league. With the best players vying for a place in the NBA squad coaches being paid in excess of a million dollars salary, Big Dance is one mammoth event.
In all the years the tournament has been played in America, few tournaments have been as exciting and numbing as March Madness 2012. While in all previous meets, the upsets and stunning defeats were spread over the entire tournament, the 2012 tournament is just one round old and it has had more than a lifetime worth of ups and downs. The most stunning defeat was of Duke. While this team was seeded second and was a top contender for the title, it went down fighting with seed #15 Lehigh. Similarly, seed #2 Missouri fell to seed #15 Norfolk.
Also a point to note is that fourteen out of sixteen teams in the Sweet Sixteen round are from power conferences. The two teams that are not from the conference are Ohio University and Xavier. Both these teams are famous and have made a mark for themselves in the basketball circuit. March Madness 2012 also has a special credit. This is the first time that the six conferences have contributed 14 teams to the Sweet Sixteen level. As this level continues to create tense moments on the field, the twelve left over teams have to elevate their games to match up to the March Madness 2012 fever. The second weekend is probably going to bring out more astounding results than the first and brackets across the country have to be refilled to accommodate the new winners.
The Sweet Sixteen match are all scheduled. Kentucky plays Indiana, Baylor plays Xavier, Ohio State plays Cincinnati, Syracuse plays Wisconsin, North Carolina plays Ohio, North Carolina State plays Kansas, Michigan plays Louisville and Florida plays Marquette. All these teams have been some of the best in the history of March Madness. Among them, they have played Final Fours 93 times and 33 titles have gone to this elite group.
Another special feature of this year’s Big Dance is that it is the first time since 2009 that all four top seeds have squeezed into the second round. It could happen that the four teams make it to the Final Four. Now, will that not create some major temperature shoot up in America? The only speculation is about Carolina. Although perfectly placed to reach the top two, the infamous Kendall Marshall injury might impact them more negatively than they wish to acknowledge. However, the team has spirit, the right attitude and can as well make the cut to the top four.
Teams this year are all out there for more than play this year. They are here to script history. If the tournament has to be described in a word, it definitely has to be “Quality”. Judging at the way the tournament is progressing, some golden history is sure to be scripted in 2012.
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