March 27, 2014 |
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - There were 10 minutes remaining in what would have been the maddest March moment of all. UCLA trailed top-seeded Florida by just one point. The streaking, upstart Bruins had the veteran Gators reeling, gasping, wondering. Steve Alford's kids were on the verge of stunning their way through South Regional semifinals and on to previously unimaginable greatness. "We really felt like were on the verge of taking the lead," said Norman Powell. "The energy was shifting.
March 27, 2014 |
PITTSBURGH -- As much as the Kings' 3-2 victory over the Penguins was about numbers -- highlighted by their seven-for-seven penalty-killing effort as they tied a franchise record with their eighth straight road win -- their success was equally about their attitude and being at their best when the situation seemed to be at its worst. In earning one-goal wins in Philadelphia, Washington and Pittsburgh in a four-day span and in holding NHL scoring leader Sidney Crosby to one assist Thursday while blanking the league's most potent power play, the Kings turned apparent adversity into an advantage to win their fifth straight game and 13th in their last 16. They finished play against the East at 21-8-3, tying San Jose and St. Louis for the most wins by a West team against the East.
March 26, 2014 |
Only the very best teams in college basketball have advanced to the NCAA tournament's round of 16. Take Dayton versus Stanford in the South Regional … please. Dayton finished fifth in the Atlantic 10 Conference and absorbed a 26-point loss this season at St. Joseph's. Stanford tuned up for the NCAA tournament with an invigorating 25-point loss to UCLA. UCLA is not one to talk, though, losing its last Pac-12 Conference regular-season game, by 18, at doormat Washington State.
March 23, 2014
Re "Pulling a story out of thin air," Opinion, March 20 Meghan Daum's column on media coverage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 raised one point, and somewhat surprisingly so: At the beginning of her column, she noted Rush Limbaugh's complaint about newscasters who "don't know beans about even why an airplane flies" but offer speculation on the vaguest of premises. I agree. It's sort of like radio show hosts with little or no formal education offering in-depth, "intellectual" political analyses on Supreme Court opinions, election demographics, foreign policy and more.
March 21, 2014 |
SAN DIEGO - No Duke here. No Ohio State anywhere. And no, giggle, not even a hint of New Mexico. At the late-night end of two NCAA tournament opening days filled with higher seeds laying giant eggs, UCLA finished Friday's madness with a simple, dominating march. The Bruins stomped through fears a talented fourth seed would overlook a pesky 13th-seed, trampled worries their new coach couldn't win a tournament opener, and even flattened a 20-year-old nightmare with a 76-59 victory over Tulsa.
March 19, 2014 |
It takes years to climb the mid-major success ladder and minutes for it to be pulled out from under you. Last year, Gonzaga finally got to the top rung when it entered the NCAA tournament as the top-ranked team in the nation. The Bulldogs rolled into the Salt Lake City sub-regional with legitimate national title aspirations, even though skeptics thought Gonzaga was overrated and didn't play in a tough enough conference to warrant all the fuss. The critics were only emboldened after Gonzaga was sent home on the first weekend by a scrappy, hungry, No. 9-seeded team with something to prove.