The upside of Sunday’s NCAA selection show is that the Shockers gained a bunch of fans. Almost everybody with a Twitter account and/or a microphone jumped to their defense.
Ron Wellman on the Midwest Region of Death: “There is balance within the regions.” … Well, if you believe UofL is indeed a 4 seed, okay.
— Eric Prisbell (@EricPrisbell) March 17, 2014
Committee did the impossible: Screwed Louisville AND Wichita State – who could meet in Sweet 16. Column: http://t.co/xItHG4Sg8d
— Gregg Doyel (@GreggDoyelCBS) March 17, 2014
WSU coach Gregg Marshall took the calm approach, rightly pointing out that upsets happen and there is no point getting worked up about what game might come up. That is absolutely the message he needs to send his players.
In a private moment, however, I expect him to acknowledge that the committee didn’t pay much respect to his team’s No. 1 seed. Playing in the same region with Kentucky, Louisville, Duke and Michigan is tough. Add in Kansas State, because if anybody is sick of hearing about the Shockers, it’s got to be the Wildcats.
That’s a tough road, even if some of those teams are not quite as good as their name indicates. The Shockers can’t even count on a noise edge. Lexington and Manhattan are closer to St. Louis than Wichita. The real issue is if WSU must play Louisville in Indianapolis.
The seeding of those teams is up for debate. Wishing for an easier path is no way to prepare. This is the NCAA Tournament and it’s going to be tough, even for a No. 1 seed, after the first game. The mileage figures, however, are fact and it does not seem fair that WSU may be put at a disadvantage so early in the tournament.
Sports Illustrated calls it the Midwest Group of Death.
Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com picks WSU to win it all.