As we wait for the Final Four to finally kick off on Saturday, the gang at Storming the Floor are amusing themselves with the championship-like substance contained in the NIT and CBI post-season tournaments.
NIT Semifinals, Madison Square Garden
Massachusetts 78, Florida 66. No 2 ½-peat for the Gators. The UMass Minutemen spoiled the NCAA tournament rematch by overcoming a nine-point halftime deficit in convincing fashion. New York native Dante Milligan had 17 points, 12 rebounds, and 3 blocks in front of his family and helped the Minutemen move on to face Ohio State. This is so nice for the downtrodden people of Boston, who just haven't had much in the way of sports triumphs to root for recently.
Ohio State 81, Ole Miss 69. The Buckeyes, on the other hand, actually get another shot at winning a postseason tournament. Jamar Butler and Evan Turner each scored 17 points for Ohio State. Ole Miss was toast from the get-go, as they managed to tie the game at eight-all with 14:58 left in the first half before OSU blew the game wide open. It'll be Buckeyes vs. Minutemen for the NIT championship tomorrow in a nice little appetizer for the main event.
CBI Championship Series
In order to explain this mess, I'd have to take a serious interest in it, and I'm not sure I can do that. Suffice to say that, rather than playing one championship game nobody really cares about, the brain trust behind the inaugural CBI decided the last two teams standing should play a three-game series to decide which team will be the answer to a future killer sports trivia question. C-USA also-ran Tulsa currently has a one-game advantage after beating MVC entrant Bradley 73-68 on Monday night. Bradley has a chance to even the score tonight in Peoria, but I think I speak for all of us when I say that I hope they have too much pride to subject us to more of this charade.