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Basketball: Just for fun . . .

From Gregg Doyel, columnist for CBS Sports.com, on the NCAA South Regional:

Best storylines:

1. NBA wasn’t for us: That first-round game between California and Louisville should be sponsored by Greg Oden, seeing how the game is a battle of NBA washouts. Cal is coached by Mike Montgomery, who went 34-48 in back-to-back seasons with Golden State. Louisville is led by Rick Pitino, who had one winning seasons in six tries with the Knicks and Celtics. Little more than a decade ago, people would have laughed if you’d said Mike Montgomery, then at Stanford, would lead Cal against a Rick Pitino team from the Bluegrass … but not Kentucky. Bizarre game. Great matchup. And I apologize to Greg Oden. Love that kid. Hope he makes it.

Best coach: This isn’t really going to cause an argument, is it? Mike Krzyzewski has three national titles. He has 10 Final Four appearances. He just led the United States to the gold medal. I hear you over there in Louisville, and I’m trying not to laugh at you there in Berkeley, but … come on. Just admit it. Coach K wins this category.

Best post player: Saint Mary’s senior Omar Samhan averages 20.9 points, 11 rebounds and three blocked shots per game. If you don’t like this pick, kindly find me a center in this region with better numbers. Until then, shaddup. Plus his name is an anagram for “a mama shorn.”

Five stars on display

1. Jerome Randle (California): Best pure shooter in this whole tournament, right here. Randle is second in the country in foul shooting at 93.5 percent. Dude hasn’t missed a free throw in more than a month. He also shoots 41 percent on 3-pointers and averages 18.7 ppg. He’s only 5-foot-10, so you probably won’t see him in the NBA, so enjoy him now.

Jeff Faraudo

  • ondal

    i like it when he tells us to shaddup. it’s something i would say. another omar samhan anagram is “a ham ransom.” thank you, i will be here all week.

  • Will

    Jeff, can you hook up with the Louisville beat writer and do a Q+A with him/her? It would be interesting to get their insights on that team.

  • Mitchie V

    A Mash Roman.

    Ondal’s is funnier.

    Go Bears!

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    It should also be mentioned that both teams aren’t doing a very good job grduating players.

    Bottom 10 Basketball Grad Rates: Major Programs
    Maryland 8%
    Fresno St. 8%
    Arizona 11%
    Georgia 18%
    Cal 20%
    Connecticut 27%
    Washington 29%
    LSU 29%
    Tennessee 30%
    Kentucky 31%

    Cal is in the bottom 10 for the second straight year. It really is disgraceful that Cal has been willing to put up with such low graduation rates for so long.

    Biggest Difference in Grad Rates Between Basketball Players and All Students
    Major Programs
    (Difference of 35% or more)
    Basketball Players All Students Difference
    Maryland 8% 79% -71%
    Cal 20% 88% -68%
    Georgia 18% 76% -58%
    Connecticut 27% 74% -47%
    Arizona 11% 57% -46%
    Washington 29% 75% -46%
    Michigan 44% 87% -43%
    USC 43% 85% -42%
    Clemson 37% 77% -40%
    Georgia Tech 38% 77% -39%
    Fresno St. 8% 47% -39%
    Virginia 56% 93% -37%
    Baylor 36% 73% -37%

    All figures are taken from the NCAA 2009 Graduation Succes Rate Report and the NCAA 2009 Federal Graduation Rate Report.