Maryland, Syracuse get to play for elite March Madness status

No way I predicted this.

Maryland plays Kansas tonight in the Sweet Sixteen.

Syracuse takes on Gonzaga tomorrow night with the same chance to advance to the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament’s Elite Eight.

Hover over either gallery photo (Getty Images) for a description. Click on either for an enlarged slide show.

My alma mater and hometown teams both won their first two games in their respective brackets.

March Madness, indeed.

Before Selection Sunday, I was sure Syracuse was not going to make the tournament, so badly did Coach Jim Boeheim’s squad limp to the finish of the regular portion of the season, losing five of its last six games. And then the Orange looked refreshed, beating Dayton in the first round, a 10 seed topping a 7. In the second round, Syracuse ran away from Cinderella, vanquishing Middle Tennessee State, the 15 seed that had shocked No. 2 Michigan State and won much attention in its first-round contest.

As for my Terrapins, this is where I hoped they’d be able to get, a No. 5 seed beating the upstart 12 South Dakota State’s late rally, and then spoiling another underdog darling’s dream, 13-seed Hawaii, in an easy game under Maryland’s terms.

Now Maryland must face Kansas, which the NCAA committee called the top No. 1 seed.

But Syracuse, that 10 seed, will again wear the white jersey of the higher seed, facing 11th-seeded Gonzaga.

I honestly, frankly, cannot and will not predict what will happen.

On my bracket in my friend Steve’s pool, after all, I picked Michigan State to win the national championship. Yup, those Michigan State Spartans, out in the first round.

Who did you pick to win in your bracket? How is your bracket holding up? Who’s more likely to win, Maryland or Syracuse?

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24 thoughts on “Maryland, Syracuse get to play for elite March Madness status

  1. Got to root for your Terps now that they are in the Big Ten, I’m still on an emotional high with my Hoo Hoo Hoosiers after beating UK. Hopefully, UNC tomorrow night can’t throw it in the ocean and we can squeak out a win!

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  2. I don’t bracketize any more. I just watch the games. This is the best time of year for me. Well one of the best. Good luck to your teams. I’ll be watching too.

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  3. Uh oh. This is how bad I am. Not only do I not know what a bracket is, I don’t follow it enough to have known — even though I live in Lexington KY — that Kentucky apparently hasn’t made the finals. If there’s a sports fan scale, I must not even be on it 🙂

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  4. Good luck to your teams. I’m cheer, cheering for old Notre Dame, of course! Did you see that miracle comeback victory on Sunday? I screamed out loud when he tipped in that rebound with 1.5 seconds left to win the game. The Luck of the Irish lives! 🙂

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