Editor's note: Jason Johnson is the "Man of March" posting a +1,600 record last season in the conference and NCAA Tournaments and helping dime players to an incredible $16,000 in profit during tournament season. He nailed all six major conference tournament winners last weekend and is on a 6-0 run. Hop on board!
With just one day until the real start of the NCAA Tournament, I spent the evening reviewing my brackets one last time. I'm trying to find that big upset. You know the upset I'm talking about, the one that knocks number two out in the second round or sends number one packing in the Sweet 16. There's only one problem; I can't find it.
Sure, you could imagine Illinois knocking off Virginia Tech or Old Dominion ending Butler's season but can you really see Maryland ending Florida's bid at a second straight national championship?
How about Tom Izzo's Spartans taking it to the masked Hansbrough and the Tar Heels?
Think Greg Oden and Ohio State could fall against Xavier or Virginia?
I've listened all year to sportswriters and ESPN broadcasters rave about parity in college basketball and tonight as I watch the play-in-game it finally hits me; there's parity everywhere.
Everywhere but at the top!
The top seven seeds in this years NCAA tournament are also regular season winners of their respective conferences. Six of the seven also won their conference tournament.
What that tells you is that these schools (Florida, Ohio State, North Carolina, Kansas, Georgetown, Memphis and UCLA) are heads and shoulders above the rest of this year's field.
Now I know that we seem say this every year; that all our brackets have four teams with either a number one or number two seed playing in the Final Four. But this year more than any in the past 10 tournaments that I can remember, it could happen.
Every analyst in the country has given the Florida Gators a practical "bye" to Atlanta. I'd expect to see Kansas take on UCLA and North Carolina take on Georgetown in the Elite Eight. The only question in my mind is whether Ohio State can get there. If they don't, insert number two Memphis.
So while I was stressing over whether Louisville could beat Texas A&M in the second round or if Oral Roberts could play the role of this year's Cinderella I finally realized, it doesn't matter. None of those teams have a chance at the Final Four. And the truth is, no one wants to see them there.
VegasInsider.com Sports Editorial Director Chris David explains, "I'm not a dreamer or believer in surprise stories or longshots when it comes to sports. I want to see the best go against the best and win it on the field, court or frozen pond.”
“Talent is the key to winning in college basketball and if you have the horses to run, you’re going to be in the Final Four and perhaps national title game. While some people enjoyed George Mason’s run last year, I would’ve preferred a Connecticut-Florida matchup that we could’ve looked back on and possibly witnessed 10-12 NBA players in that one matchup.”
I'm sticking to my prediction that Florida takes home a second straight NCAA Championship in Atlanta. I'm just hoping they don't have to knock off a "George Mason" to get it.
Be sure to check out Jason Johnson's Blog throughout the entire month of March.