UCLA Bruins (27-6) vs. Belmont Bruins (20-10).
When: Thursday, 5:10 p.m. ET
Where: San Diego
1. Beware Of The S and H. Against teams with an S and an H in their school name (Memphis, Washington, Washington St., Southern California), UCLA is 3-4. Against everyone else, UCLA is 21-2. Don t say I didn t warn you.
2. These Guys Know Their History. Of the four seniors (Cedric Bozeman, Ryan Hollins, Michael Fey, Janou Rubin), three of them are history majors (Rubin is a Sociology Major), which tells us, well, nothing. But it s still interesting.
3. They re Finally Back On Top Of The Pac-10. At 14-4 in conference, they captured their first Pac-10 title in nine years. The best part? Their rotation includes only two seniors and no juniors, so the best should be yet to come — if Farmar and Afflalo stay in school. — Jon Reed
1. But What About The Stickiest? Belmont sports information director Greg Sage was on such an, um, high after the Bruins' win over archrival Lipscomb in the Atlantic Sun Tournament championship game, he described it this way: The Bruins used courageous defense and the determined scoring of an unflappable sophomore to claim the tastiest pot in school history. I know Greg, took him to lunch once and consider him a good guy. But maybe I should have suspected something when he ordered the nachos with extra cheeeeeeeese, dude.
2. My Cousin Vinny. The Lakers have Jack Nicholson. Kentucky has Ashley Judd. Belmont has ... Vince Gill? That's right, the self-proclaimed Ambassador of Country Music is a season-ticket holder at Belmont's Curb Event Center and avid supporter of everything Bruin. Gill, a 14-time (!) Grammy winner, is a close friend of head coach Rick Byrd, who is in his 25th year at Belmont. Gill is also a scratch golfer, with a low round of 62, and hosts his own celebrity charity tournament named The Vinny. Oh, and he s married to the milf-y Amy Grant. You would trade lives with him in a heartbeat.
3. Six Degrees To Fred Smoot. Belmont post player Boomer Herndon is in his first season of eligibility after transferring from Tennessee. His coach with the Vols was Buzz Peterson, who roomed with Michael Jordan while both attended North Carolina. Jordan's company, Jumpman23, includes Randy Moss in its stable of athletes. Moss played six seasons in Minnesota with Daunte Culpepper, who was getting a lapdance while Fred Smoot operated the infamous double-header. — Dom Bonvissuto