March Madness is finally here!

Fat Guy Corner

 

 

The month of March has arrived as February hits the rear view window. If you love college basketball like I do, this is the month we all crave — it’s called March Madness.

The bouncing of the orange pumpkins on the hardwood will literally be nonstop. The regular season conferences are coming to a close this weekend. The conference championships will be next, the little conferences and big conferences both going full tilt. How can you not love watching the smaller conferences vying for an automatic bid to the NCAA field of 68? It’s priceless if you ask me. The lifetime of memories for the kids who get to punch their ticket to the “Big Dance” is an awesome moment.

The 2020-21 college basketball season was a serious challenge to all teams due to COVID-19. A whole bunch of teams suffered through long pauses to their seasons. However, it looks like the finish line is near and the NCAA Tournament will be played. Let’s all cross our fingers.

The Michigan Wolverines had a fabulous week defeating the Iowa Hawkeyes in an absolute blowout win in Ann Arbor. It was an impressive 79-57 victory. The Wolverines then hit the road to take on Indiana and prevailed 73-57. As of my press deadline, the Wolverines had three games left: Illinois (played Tuesday night) and Michigan State twice. The Thursday night MSU game was at home and then they travel to MSU on Sunday. The Michigan Wolverines are a NCAA lock and more than likely a No. 1 seed. The Wolverines would have to totally unravel this week to not be a No. 1 seed.

The Michigan State Spartans are scratching and clawing to make the NCAA Tournament. I thought after MSU beat Ohio State and Illinois last week they were piecing together a nice run to the NCAA Tournament. The Spartans then went to Maryland and were routed by the Terps 73-55. The Spartans have not missed the NCAA “Big Dance” since 1997! What a streak that is by Tom Izzo’s basketball program.

The Spartans, I believe, realize the importance of this week on the hardwood. As of my press deadline, the Michigan State Spartans were set to play Indiana Tuesday and Michigan twice to close out the season. I truly think they need two out of three wins or a long run in the Big Ten Tournament to make the NCAAs. I really think the two Michigan and Michigan State games will be hotly contested. I think each team wins a game and they split the two game series.

The JJ Watt sweepstakes are over and the Arizona Cardinals were declared the winners. I say, “maybe” to the winners statement. The contract I think is steep at two years $31 million with a $23 million guaranteed. The facts are, JJ is 32-years-old and has some serious mileage on his NFL body. JJ in 2011-2015 played all 16 games, which was pretty impressive. The last five years starting in 2016 and 2017 he played in only eight games total. The year 2019 was also an eight game season for JJ Watt. I will say he played all 16 games in 2020. I know the football experts had him in a Packers, Bills, or Browns uniform, so Arizona did come as a shocker. I thought he wanted a shot a Super Bowl? I personally don’t think Arizona is a Super Bowl contender. What JJ Watt does get in Arizona is playing defense back under Vance Joseph, who was his coordinator in Texas. He will also be reunited with ex-teammate DeAndre Hopkins. It is a good move for Arizona if Watt can play 16 games or so for two years. Let’s see how it plays out in the desert.

The Tiger Woods car accident happened early last week where he suffered numerous leg injuries. The good news is, Tiger survived the wreck, which is the most important thing. I hope he can recover from his injuries and return to a healthy life. The return to golf should be the last thing on his mind. I do wonder if we will see Tiger Woods ever play competitive golf again.

The Tigers have started playing spring training games. I will be keeping an eye on things, especially the pitching.

I can be reached at thefatguy@mihomepaper.com.