Memphis Tigers (32-3) vs. Texas A&M Aggies (27-6).
When: Tonight, 7:27 p.m.
Where: San Antonio
1. Skeletons From The Closet. The farthest Memphis has ever advanced in the NCAA Tournament was the 1973 championship game, in which UCLA's Bill Walton annihilated the Tigers with 44 points on 21-of-22 shooting. We also seemed to remember Memphis coach John Calipari having some tournament success while coaching at UMass, but we can't find any record of it. Thoughts on that, Marcus Camby? You were playing for Coach Cal back then, weren't you?
2. Mister, If You Don't Shut Up, We're Going To Kick One Hundred Percent Of Your Ass!. The University of Memphis was, until 1994, known as Memphis State. The university made the name change to bring a little gravitas and respect to an institution that had been slagged as "Tiger High." And so when Memphis fans see the continuing disrespect heaped upon their Tigers, well, it makes 'em mad enough to steal Dad's car, trench a few lawns and TP a few trees, is what it does.
3. (Don't) Sweep The Leg. The Bluff City's eyes are on the ankle of Chris Douglas-Roberts, Memphis' leading scorer, who sprained the joint with eight minutes left in the Tigers' Sunday afternoon victory over Nevada. It's unclear how ready CDR will be to play, but earlier this week Calipari compared Douglas-Roberts to fellow (ex-) Tiger Kirk Gibson, who hobbled off the bench to smack a dramatic game-ending homer for Los Angeles in the 1988 World Series. So if the Tigers draw the Oakland A's in the Elite Eight, Memphis should be golden. — Jay Busbee
1. Good Times. The Aggies are in the Sweet Sixteen for the first time since 1980 and the second time ever despite the best efforts of Becca Mann and the Louisville Cardinals. No really, thank you Edgar Sosa for a great game, your two missed free throws and your bonehead, freshman-mistake, missed NBA 3-pointer that would have won the game even though you were only down by one point. A&M better shell out the dough for Billy Clyde Gillispie unless they want to wait another 27 years to make it back this far. They also might want to go ahead and start recruiting Acie Law V, even though he has yet to be conceived (as far as we know anyways).
2. Please Forgive Me, Captain Kirk. Defensive specialist Dominique Kirk had two options coming out of Dallas Bryan Adams High: Texas A&M or Liberty University. What seemed like a reach at the time has turned out to be quite a hit as of late. Kirk scored 16 against Penn and followed it up with a career high 21 against Louisville to push his season average to just over seven points per game. He has shown that he can hit threes, drive to the bucket and, more important, be a fearless leader for the Aggies when it matters most, which makes it at least a little bit easier to stomach next year's departure of Captain Clutch.
3. Beer, Barbeque and Blondes. It is rumored around College Station that coach Billy Gillispie is only interested in things that begin with the letter B. Number one of course is basketball, but the others might surprise you. A known loner, Billy has been seen numerous times at local establishments kicking back a few by himself, though welcoming all fans who stop to say hello. He also frequents a local barbeque joint, again alone, to have a meal and look over scouting reports, which he leaves on the table after reading. Also, according to a popular Aggie message board, he has been seen all over town with the lovely Miss Erin Andrews. We're just going to assume that this is only a rumor to keep our hopes alive. — Mitch Martin