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Sorry to burst your bubble

Sorry to burst your bubble

Sorry to burst your bubble

Who hates winter? Raise your hands.

Outside of you lucky, well-tanned and thin punks residing in constantly warm climates, February is the toughest month to get through.

If you live in an area where you have snow for Christmas and know that it's pronounced “wind chill factor” not “wind shield factor” -  you're one of the millions suffering the February blahs.

Things get so bad in the second month of the year that some Canadian provinces actually created a holiday just to break up the 28 days of ice and snow. They call it “Family Day” just to remind you those people stuck inside with you all winter are people you care about.

Myself, I'm a summer guy. I stretch wearing shorts and flip-flops well into November. While I'd like to move to a tropical paradise or at least a place that's never heard of snow tires, it can't be done at this time.

So, I settle for turning up the heat full blast and walking around in my underwear. Throw in some Jimmie Buffet and room-temperature Corona and you can almost smell the sand and surf.

You can't always get what you want.

The same goes for the NCAA tournament. There are plenty of programs I'd like to see hit the dance floor but with conference play winding down it looks more and more likely they'll soon be getting an RSVP from the NIT.


Who we want: Southern California Trojans

Who wouldn't like to see USC's talented yet troubled players on the big stage? DeMar DeRozan seems to have hit the freshman wall but besides the first-year forward, Taj Gibson remains one of the Pac-10's best defenders and Dwight Lewis has emerged as a top-tear talent. Add to the Trojans' on-court excitement, their locker room drama. Daniel Hackett is already under the spotlight since the “package deal” inquiries and fighting with coaches and teammates. The March Madness reporters would gorge at the all-you-can-write story buffet that is USC.

Who we're getting: California Golden Bears

Big East

Who we want: Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Notre Dame was supposed to be a contender. The Irish left a bad taste in our mouths with a horrific January. But despite that fall, Notre Dame still boasts a couple players the tourney can't do without. Center Luke Harangody is still the most talented big man in college and shooter Kyle McAlarney has his stroke back. These two would combine for some memorable Madness moments.

Who we get: West Virginia Mountaineers


Who we want: Maryland Terrapins

Love him or hate him, Greivis Vasquez is to be fear and respected – kind of like an escalator. The junior hung a Magic Johnson on the Tar Heels and captured the nation's attention with those yellow unies. The Terps have an OK resume with a win over Michigan State to go along with the UNC game. After losing to Duke Wednesday, Maryland needs to win the ACC tournament to avoid losing in the first-round of the NIT.

Who we get: Boston College Eagles

Big Ten

Who we want: Michigan Wolverines

In all honesty, I don't think anyone but Michigan fans wants another Big Ten team in the tourney. But for the sake of argument, the Wolverines would make an interesting addition to the field of 65. They boast non-conference wins over Duke and UCLA and almost knocked off UConn a couple weeks back. Michigan was revealed as a classic overachiever in Big Ten competition and although almost every team in the conference has an RPI in the Top 65, a sub-.500 mark won't cut it. John Beilein worked March magic at Richmond and West Virginia and might have been able to do it again if his team didn't fall apart against Iowa.

Who we get: Minnesota Golden Gophers

Big 12

Who we want: Oklahoma State Cowboys

In one last-second shot, Texas A&M's Josh Carter beat Nebraska and pushed his program past OSU in terms of tournament spots. A down year in the Big 12 leaves just four teams getting bids. Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri are in no matter what, giving the final ticket to either Texas A&M, OSU, KSU or Nebraska. The Cowboys have the fire power to make waves in March. They lead the Big 12 and sit fourth in the country in scoring with more than 83 points per game. Star guard Byron Eaton has a flair for the dramatic and James Anderson is the best player you've never heard of. The Cowboys need to at least knock off OU in Norman in the final game of the schedule to have a shot.

Who we get: Texas A&M Aggies


Who we want: Auburn Tigers

I have erased my Christmas debts betting on the Tigers this season. Auburn is 16-5 ATS and gets the raw deal of being discounted for playing in the SEC West. It does have a win over Tennessee but that's about as impressive as sleeping with Paris Hilton. Who hasn't, right? Auburn does have a defense that can keep games close. And come tourney time, close games are bracket killers. Despite the Tigers late push, they lack a non-conference resume, boast a weak RPI and have a near .500 record in the worst major conference in the country. Looks like the fun is over.

Who we get: Tennessee Volunteers

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