If Syracuse loses to UNC-Asheville today, what will that mean for your NCAA Tournament 2012 bracket?
Syracuse University and UNC-Asheville are in a close race to lock up their first-round March Madness game, but super-underdog UNC-Asheville is up 34-30 at the half, in a game that is going far differently than pretty much anyone in the country would have expected.
Syracuse--which is reeling from the absence its star center Fab Melo due to ineligibility--faces a deficit as it heads into the locker room for a number of reasons, most importantly the fact that the Orange is only shooting 1-12 from beyond the arc.
And the Bulldogs are playing the best basketball of their lives, with guard J.P. Primm and forward Quinard Jackson each putting up 8 points so far.
Syracuse is killing UNC-Asheville in one key area, however, as the team has notched ten offensive rebounds on the half, giving them a number of unearned shot attempts and points.
And the Bulldogs dodged a bullet in the last seconds of the half, as what officials called initially as a made point and foul was reevaluated and called as a shot clock violation, leaving the score at 34-30 with half a game to go.
The game is only the seventh in the history of March Madness when a 16-seed has led a one-seed at the half, so UNC-Asheville has pulled off a miracle so far. But a 16-seed has never beaten a one-seed in the NCAA Tournament, and Charles Barkley said on ESPN at halftime that we're not going to see history made today in the form of a win by UNC-Asheville.
I just don't think the talent will allow them to play this strong for the rest of the game, Barkley said, adding that Syracuse are the deepest team in the country.
So the question remains: If Syracuse loses to UNC-Asheville, what happens to your NCAA Tournament 2012 bracket?
First of all, if you have Syracuse advancing beyond the second round, you're in for a world of hurt, as Kansas State University is made to beat a team like UNC-Asheville, having beat a scrappy Mizzou team twice in the regular season.
Luckily, however, no one in your office pool picked UNC-Asheville to win the game either. So as long as you didn't have Syracuse going too far, you should be OK.
And if you did, and Syracuse somehow loses, the stress is off, March Madness just screwed you with its first Cinderella story. Happy March!