Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Hurricanes Need More Open Water...But...

On Friday, the University of Miami Hurricanes will begin their pursuit of an NCAA Basketball championship in the granddaddy of all tournaments. Their chances of winning the whole shebang are slim, surely, but their road may not be as fettered as some others in similar predicament.

Throughout the year, the 'Canes have shown an ability to beat top teams (Duke, for example). They'll need that magic to come in spades here.

They should beat #10-seed St. Mary's in the first round. It's the second game, likely against #2-seed Texas, that will be their most difficult stumbling block. If they can somehow escape that game, the path gets a lot friendlier.

I like Miami's chances against any of Marquette, Kentucky, Stanford, or Cornell (don't count out Cornell, a team far better than its 14th seed ranking), and by my estimation, they won't be playing Memphis for the Houston finals. Memphis benefited from an exorbitantly soft Conference USA schedule. I expect them to fall in the Sweet 16 to Pittsburgh or Michigan State.

Once in the Final Four, anything can happen (and anyone can be there). So is it likely the Hurricanes will take the cake? No, but is it possible? I say yes.

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