NCAA Tournament Insider: Snubs, Surprises, Storylines

Mar 16, 2015 by Robb Todd

The basketball gods giveth, the basketball gods taketh away—and dunk one right in your face.

Right, UCLA? Right, Temple? Right.

Temple wasn’t the only snub Sunday but the Bruins were the most shocking inclusion. Here’s a rundown of some other teams that might be more than a little upset that UCLA is in and they are out.

But, hey, let’s look at one of the positives of UCLA’s gift from the committee: it sets up a great storyline with second-round opponent SMU. Former Bruins coach Larry Brown, who led them to a national title in 1980, now helms the Mustangs. This contest is Brown’s first NCAA tournament game since 1988 when he led Kansas to a title, the same year that SMU last won a tournament game. It’s like all the beautiful stars in the sky aligned just to make this happen. Or something! Whatever, it’s pretty cool, stars or no stars.

Duke never seems to need celestial intervention. We see a headline like this, oh, every year, don’t we? “Duke—not undefeated Kentucky—is the No. 1 seed with the easiest path to Indianapolis.” That’s not hate, that’s just the truth.

Meanwhile, Dayton may have been on the bubble and not realized it. Check out the players' faces during the selection show. Who could blame them for being confused? The upside of the downside of having to play their way into the tournament is that they get to play a true home game.

Finally, here are a couple handy-dandy tournament links:

2015 March Madness Predictions

Tournament TV Schedule

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