March 24, 2008

You know those "Last Will and Testament" things they do in high school yearbooks? Before the unsweet 48 went home, they got together and bequeathed a bunch of helpful stuff to the 16 remaining teams. This is their official statement:

• To West Virginia, we leave this DVD commemorating the first 100 seasons of Duke Basketball. The DVD adds meaning to its second round win by teaching players that once upon a time, Duke was a basketball powerhouse and a legitimate title-threat every year.

• To Memphis guard Derrick Rose, we leave all of Eric Gordon's rookie endorsement deals. Gordon's disappearing act against Arkansas made it clear that Rose will be the young, marketable, hotshot guard in next June's draft. Hopefully Gordon will still find a company looking for a one-dimensional scorer to promote its products.

• To Xavier, we leave John Henderson's pre-game slap-man. Against both Georgia and Purdue the Musketeers came out flat, digging themselves into eight-point, first half holes. The slap-man ensures they will come out fired up and ready to play.

• To the Davidson Wildcats, we leave a vial of Dell Curry's frozen sperm, so in future years the basketball program can churn out a never-ending stream of Curry offspring.

• To Michigan State, we leave a stern rebuke. Bobby Knight went on ESPN and said Pitt was going to going to win the national championship. The Spartans then went ahead and beat them. You do NOT disrespect Knight like that.

• To Stanford, we leave a photo of Tom Crean's horrified wife after Brook Lopez's jumper hit the outside of the rim and caromed back in. Did the cameras really have to keep showing her? Do they get good ratings for putting somebody on national TV in the midst of their worst moment? On the other hand, it was hilarious.

• To Western Kentucky coach Darrin Horn, we leave a Blackberry, so that at any moment he can check the score and time remaining in his games. That was an obvious problem with 30 seconds left in overtime and the Hilltoppers tied with Drake. Horn's players inexplicably began darting around the court, desperate to foul any Drake player. Giving somebody the go-ahead free throw is usually a strategy to avoid.

• To Washington State, we leave the title of "Best in the Pac-10." On Saturday the Cougars beat Notre Dame like they were playing the Fighting Irish football team. And you know how UCLA beat Mississippi Valley State, 70-29? Washington State beat MVSU earlier this year, 71-26. The transitive property says the Cougars are better.

• To North Carolina, we leave a time machine so they may go back to Friday or Sunday and practice playing real defense. Louisville or UCLA won't let UNC run on them like that. And when the Tar Heels need their defense, the defensive intensity won't be there.

• To Louisville, we leave the ability to stay focused while Tennessee spends the week in the spotlight. They must not be distracted by the antics of Bruce Pearl.

• To Wisconsin, we leave an apology. It turns out the Big 10 is not a conference for little girls. Michigan Sate and Purdue are good teams. Even Ohio State is still alive in the NIT.

• To the Texas Longhorns, we leave the phone numbers of all the girls who ever came between the Lopez brothers. Do with them what you please.

• To Kansas, we leave a tape of North Carolina's win over Arkansas. The Jayhawks shouldn't look ahead ... but it might not be a bad idea to watch a little UNC.

• To UCLA, we leave a half-court offense. Against Mississippi Valley State the Bruins shot only 47 percent from the field (some credit goes to MVSU). The other three No. 1 seeds combined to shoot 55 percent in the first round and 57 percent in the second round. UCLA knows how to play defense, but at some point they'll need to score.

• To Tennessee, we leave the SEC's pride. There's not much left of it.

• To Villanova, we leave an NIT bracket. Just to remind them how far they've come. Syracuse is still kicking themselves for not winning that Big East Tournament game.

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