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It’s Final Four Time!

April 4th, 2014

A losing March Madness tournament bracket. Photo credit: Big Stock Photo

UPDATE: The University of Connecticut Men’s and Women’s team both won the championship! 

While it was anticipated the women would win, the men’s team flew under the radar until near the end. Some are calling the men’s win a Cinderella story. UConn countered, “We’re born for this.”

College basketball’s Final Four  takes place this weekend.

It’s the showdown of the four teams who made it through to the finals of the annual national college basketball tournament … better known as March Madness .

The Florida Gators plays the UConn (Connecticut) Huskies in one semi-final.

The Wisconsin Badgers plays the Kentucky Wildcats in the other.

Both these games are Saturday night. The winners of these match-ups play in the final Monday.  You can  click here  for the schedule.

Florida is the only number 1 seed that made it into the semi-finals and they’re generally favored to win.

But the big hubbub is about Kentucky and their system of “one-and-done.”

The rule is that you can’t go straight from high school to the NBA anymore (like LeBron James did). It’s partly to make sure the players heading into the NBA are a bit more mature. In the meantime, high school stars who would normally have turned pro straight from high school, now play college basketball for a year to bide their time. They play one year, then they’re done and turn pro — “one-and-done.”  And Kentucky is happy to have them.

Kentucky coach, John Calipari, is pretty controversial because of it. He says he  doesn’t like  the rule either but since he didn’t make it up, he’s going to make the most of it. And since his team is in the semi-finals … he has.

Others say this kind of  “drive-by coaching” is ruining college basketball and isn’t in the right spirit of the game.

What do you think of the strategy of “one-and-done”? Is it fair to build a team and play that way?

WOMEN’S FINAL FOUR

UConn is expected to win. Again. Unlike the men’s tournament where upsets seem to occur more often, the same teams dominate the women’s field. This would be a record 9th time UConn won. They won last year, too. The women play Sunday .

THE POOLS

Millions of people, including President Obama, pick their favorites to win. The famous investor Warren Buffet and Quicken Loans even put up A BILLION dollars to anyone who guessed every single game in their tournament bracket right. There were so many upsets in the early rounds that no one is going to win it, and most people were out very early on.

ESPN has the other big pool. Tyler Conway at the  Bleacher Report  wrote that guessing just the final four teams correctly is “a result that essentially no one beyond people who were completely guessing got correct. If someone came up with that foursome based on any type of basketball knowledge, they should not just have a television job—they should  own television.”   Just 612 people out of 11 million still got the final four right, apparently by luck.

Who do you think’s going to win?  

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