This afternoon the clock struck midnight on yet another NCAA March Madness Cinderella story. The carriage became a pumpkin, the horses morphed back into mice, and the Dayton Flyers - in the face of the faster, stronger, better, and more experienced Florida Gators - turned back into a respectable mid-major that will ultimately never win a national championship - unless it's the NIT or the Insider Invitational or one of the other eight tournaments everyone else gets invited to for the sake of revenue.
It's a little sad to see that final real underdog leave the tournament, but the more painful truth might be that even fairy tales don't have fairy tale endings. All we know for sure is that the stories end when the couples - often young, naive adolescents who barely know each other - fall in love much too quickly and the credits roll with the promise of exciting futures and certain happiness. Three kids and thirty pounds later, there's no guarantee that glass slipper is going to fit Cinderella anymore, nor is it a lock that the prince is still charming his way through his forties. So long Dayton Flyers, you're better off anyway.
"Goddamit. Not again."
Wisconsin pulled out both the cover and the upset win for us, proving once again that we are far better at picking winners than totals. Thanks to an Elite Eight split today, our records for The Madness stand at:
Team Picks: 14-5 ATS
Sunday's action pits another two teams from The Big Ten and - spoiler alert - we like them both.
Michigan Wolverines (+2.5) over Kentucky Wildcats: The Wildcats have a huge advantage on the glass, but that will only help if Michigan misses their shots and so far the shots have been falling. Experience will prevail as the youth and inexperience finally catch up with the Wildcats in this one. Take the points, they're a gift.
Michigan State Spartans (-5.5) over Connecticut Huskies: This line looks to be inviting us to back the Huskies which is why we're rolling with MSU. The game will be close throughout, but it has a feel of one that will be just out of the Huskies grasp up until the end when free throws help the Spartans win by seven.
Good luck all. Enjoy the games - they should be good one.
Vinny and Marco