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The Orange::44 Pick 'Em Challenge

Is Massachusetts really playing for a
national championship without Marcus Camby?

Well, last week did not bode well for me. After finishing week one with the lowest point total amongst the competiting prognosticators, I managed to match my own stupidity with a powerful six-point performance, thus relegating myself to the basement of this little exercise.

Don't you wish you were me?

Brian Harrison, who managed to excise himself from everything lacrosse following week one (read: he thought Georgetown had Notre Dame in the opening round), managed to pull the only perfect score of the competition, correctly guessing all the games from last weekend. He is now tied with super cynic Collin Long for the lead in the contest.

The rules for this weekend are going to be modified for the sake of my own mental health. Given the fact that virtually everyone will be in Philadelphia for the games this weekend consuming copious amounts of fermented beverages, the prognostication rules must change a bit. For the semifinal rounds, predictors will make selections the same way as they did over the last two weeks. For the finals, however, the selector will only pick who he believes will win the national championship based on their semifinal picks.

For example, if I pick Virginia to beat Syracuse and Maryland to beat Massachusetts (which I did), I must pick between Virginia and Maryland for the national championship. This is true regardless of whether Virginia and Maryland actually advance to Memorial Monday.

With that said, on to the picks.

Pointless Speculation: Final Four

Round 1 Totals29313134
Round 2 Totals35384141
Syracuse v. VirginiaUVA-2UVA-1--
Massachusetts v. MarylandMD-1MD-2--

Syracuse v. Virginia
Look, Virginia is far and away the strongest team in the country this season. The Cavaliers' offense is indicative of the Roy Simmons, Jr.-era Syracuse fun-and-gun attack. The defense, similarly, is stifling and makes for a lot of lopsided scores.

Syracuse, constrastingly, has been a two-face this season. Starting out 1-4, it was looking like the Orange::44 jinx was in full throws. Following a stretch of nine straight wins, however, the Orange look every bit the title contender it was supposed to be at the outset of the season.

What does this all mean? I have no fucking clue.

Head says: "Pick Virginia, dumbass."
Heart says: "Pick the Orange, sweetcheeks."

I guess I'm going with Virginia, even though this pick will subject me to unsubsiding ridicule from my peers.

Massachusetts v. Maryland
Brian Crockett, senior attack/midfield for the Orange, said it best:

"I don't know a lot of (the UMass) players personally, but the ones I do know, I don't like. The team in general, I don't really have a whole lot of respect for them, and I want to beat them pretty badly."

Good enough for me. Maryland wins.

Championship Monday
Ideally, in this space would be an opus to why a particular team will win the national championship. However, a treatise is not necessary. Rather, only eight words are necessary:

Virginia is the best team in the country.

If Duke had a program that wasn't on the shelf, this assessment may be different. But as things stand right now, nobody should touch Virginia if the Cavaliers manage to get by the Orange on Saturday.

Syracuse v. Virginia
Oh man, I hope this game resembles the one SU and UVA played earlier this year. I believe that final was 20-15. No pressure on me, but SU is 3-0 in semi-final games that I make it to on time and 0-1 in semi-final games I show up late to (Stupid Raven's Stadium). Looks like 40 mile drive from my parents place to the Linc will be crucial Saturday morning.

Massachusetts v. Maryland

Fear the Turtle

Championship Monday
Hoos from Hoo-ville

Syracuse v. Virginia
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

Massachusetts v. Maryland
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

Championship Monday
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

Syracuse v. Virginia
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

Massachusetts v. Maryland
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

Championship Monday
[Eds. note: Explanations pending.]

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