Thursday, March 26, 2015

NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 & Elite 8

What a perfect example of why I love this team so much. There's not a person out there that would think Oregon is better than UW. The moms of the players on the team know it. The coach's daughter knows it. That stupid, spoiled duck knows it.

But that didn't stop Oregon from taking UW down to the wire. Wisconsin really played a pretty bad game, and Oregon did all they could to make it interesting. Of course, this Wisconsin team can play a pretty bad game and still punch their ticket to the Sweet 16. Because they're just that fucking good.

Now, however, it's time for the shit to get real. No more cupcakes. No more outclassed opponents. There exists a possibility that UW would have to beat UNC/Arizona/Kentucky/Duke to win a National Championship *knock knock*. That is INSANE. That's like the Mt. Rushmore of college basketball right there (whatever UCLA). And if you wanna be the best, you gotta beat the best.

So let's do this thing. Let's go beat them all. It starts with UNC Thursday night.

BUT WHATEVER DO WE KNOW ABOUT UNC?


  • Location? Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
  • Colors? Carolina Blue and White. Note the distinct lack of teal. We in the big boy leagues now.
  • They have a bullshit tree:
Also located in McCorkle Place is the Davie Poplar tree under which the university's founder, William Richardson Davie, supposedly selected the location for the university. The legend of the Davie Poplar says that if the tree falls, so will UNC. Because of the tree's questionable health from damage caused by severe weather such as Hurricane Fran in 1996, the university has planted two genetic clones nearby called Davie Poplar Jr. and Davie Poplar III.
That is GARBAGE. If the school falls when the Davie Poplar tree falls, that's IT. You don't get to do bullshit witchcraft cloning science to cover your asses. Whoever started that legend didn't live before hurricanes and thunderstorms were invented. Maybe they should've not been idiots and tied the existence of their university to the life of something that dies.

And whoa hey apparently I have no idea how cloning was. I thought cloning just like made an exact replica of the thing you cloned. Shouldn't that just make a new shitty tree on the verge of dying? When they cloned that sheep, how did that work? When we get to human cloning, can you just make a fetus that turns out to be EXACTLY the same as the clone source material? Cloning is fucking BANANAS. I've seen The Prestige, I know exactly what happens when we start cloning. I want nothing to do with that.

In summary, UNC employs witchcraft to make devil tree clones so their school doesn't die. Why don't they clone Sean May and Michael Jordan and just end this charade?
  • Is there spooky grass in Chapel Hill? There's not NOT spooky grass in Chapel Hill:
The student members of the university's Dialectic and Philanthropic Societies are not allowed to walk on the grass of McCorkle Place out of respect for the unknown resting place of Joseph Caldwell, the university's first president.
Mentally I think you learn to obey that rule by playing the LAVA GAME. Grass of McCorkle Place is straight lava, you step on it you burn your leg off. Bang, no one ever touches the grass. In other news, McCorkle is a name I can get behind. Fantastic name. McCorkle McGee should be the name of their mascot.


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

NCAA Tournament 1st & 2nd Rounds



DO YOU FEEL ALIVE I feel alive. FULL OF VIGOR AND EXCITEMENT AND DREAMS. That Kentucky loss still tastes real bad in my mouth like the time I ate an oyster. YUCK. But this is the year we cleanse our souls of that disappointment. This is the year we show the world that Bo Ryan is literally the best coach in the history of coachery. And before I go flying off the reservation with hyperbole and nonsense, I'm going to slow down a bit.

What a Big Ten Tournament that was, right? Kinda fun how all three games were so similar: not the strongest starts, opponent makes some moves early, some clowns start wondering R WE GUNNA LOSE TO MICHIGAN/PURDUE/MSU?? And then this team reminds you exactly why all the hyperbole in the world is somewhat acceptable. They're just that good.

Even down 11 with 8 minutes to go against a Tom Izzo-coached team in March, I wasn't ready to doubt them. Sure, it wasn't an ideal spot to be in... but these kids are too good to write off. So when people are tweeting 'game over', I'm sipping my beer and waiting for the next Koenig splash.

Do me a favor: don't give up on this team. Even when it looks like we're totally cooked and it's just not our night, don't give up on them. I refuse to believe that this team is destined for anything short of greatness. You should feel the same. When all else fails, believe in the #SpiritAnimals:


It all starts Friday night with a first round date with the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers.



Thursday, March 12, 2015

Big Ten Tournament

That dismantling of Ohio State was something truly spectacular to behold. To go into a conference rival's house on their Senior Day and straight up embarrass them a moment that should be cherished. Hold on to that shit, store it away, and bring it out the next time you're sad.

It's not like we did that to Northwestern or Nebraska. That was OSU. That was a top-25 team with a potential first team All-American stud. That's a team that some people will put in their Final Four. And we walked in, took a look around, and then beat the crap out of them like that was the damn National Championship.

And that's why (amongst a million other reasons) I'm sky-high on my hopes for this team as we enter #TournamentTime. Bo is the master of instilling that mentality. He'll straight up tell his boys to play like it's the National Championship every game. All out, nonstop, max effort for 40 minutes every time you step on the court. And THAT is the mentality needed to win a championship.

But of course, you need more that just that mentality. You need the talent to along with it. And you need a little luck. We know the talent is in place - we literally have the best player on the floor going into every single game this year. He's surrounded by studs. And Trae could be ready to rejoin the fold come NCAA time, giving us some MUCH needed depth. The only remaining doubt in my mind is luck. Will we catch those handful of breaks that EVERY champion needs on their path to glory? Will the shot rattle home when we need it? Will that key questionable call go our way? These things are often overlooked when evaluating postseason success. They'll be key factors in determining how bananas the next month is going to be for the Wisconsin basketball program.

#LETSgo!



CHICAGO BADGERS: If Bucky takes care of business on Friday, we're shaping up for a noon tip on Saturday. Join me in the #WearRed approach to St. Patrick's Day and let's get weird at Will's. Green is a fucking heinous color and we all know it. That one shirt you've been day drinking in the last 10 years can use a year off.



WHO/WHERE/WHEN



Lots to chew on with 14 teams now. DOUBLE BYE CITY.



Thursday, March 5, 2015

at #23 Ohio State

Where does the time go? TWO regular season games left? 2 weeks until the NCAA Tournament is underway? How is this possible? Didn't this beautiful, historic season JUST get underway, like, 10 minutes ago? I suppose the age-old saying applies here: time flies when you're having fun. And if #WinningIsFun, and we've been doing a lot of winning...


TRANSITIVE PROPERTY APPLIES. It's pretty nuts that we haven't won a Big Ten Championship in like 7 years. But we all knew this team was going to be the team to take care of business. It was never really in doubt, even after Maryland closed the gap a bit.

Two trophies down. Two to go. Plenty of work to be done, and the real fun is just around the corner. Nothing else needs to be said:





CHICAGO BADGERS: Looking forward to gathering the troops at Will's once the BTT starts. And if you're thinking of watching the NCAA games anywhere else you're a damn fool. Believe that.



WHO/WHERE/WHEN

TV: CBS



Thursday, February 26, 2015

Michigan State & at Minnesota

If you were upset for more than 8 seconds about losing that game against Maryland, then I think you need to check yourself. I probably should tell you that this team is fine, but I'm not going to. You should know that. You should know that the ceiling for this team has not changed for one second since the season started. The ceiling was not lowered when we lost at home to Duke. The ceiling remained unaffected by Trae's injury and the loss to Rutgers. The ceiling is perfectly in tact after Maryland got the best of us.

That ceiling was and always will be a three-pronged ceiling of SUCCESS:

  • B1G Regular Season Championship
  • B1G Tournament Championship
  • NCAA Tournament Championship

Lord knows how many of those things will actually happen. The B1G Regular Season Title is inches away. The two tournaments are one-and-done crapshoots where we have reasonably better odds than most. But nothing is guaranteed.

All I know is that this team is still fully capable of achieving its three-pronged ceiling of success. Other things I know:
  • Duje will snap out of his funk, and he's going to snap out of it at the best time possible. I'm gonna guess he hits multiple threes in one of the B1G Tournament games and then goes on a tear in the NCAAs.
  • You'd rather get your 'cold streak' out of the way in February than in March. I put 'cold streak' in quotes because if your 'cold streak' means losing one game and just being less than dominant in the 5 preceding wins, then you're fucking fantastic and should smile every day when you wake up.
  • When you're on the road in a hostile environment and can't catch a single break, you're going to lose sometimes. That happens. Questionable calls, untimely offensive rebounds... these things have a way of swaying the game. Last I checked, the postseason tournaments are played on neutral courts. We like neutral courts.
It's all good. Let's squash Izzo on Senior Day and stampede our way into the postseason.



CHICAGO BADGERS: If you're not aware, we're 44 days from Game of Thrones, under a month until 7 pm sunsets, and 5 weeks from Wrastlemania. Shit's about to get real.


HOUSEKEEPING NOTES: I'm sick of the BP email getting stuck in spam folders. New format going forward: first section will get sent out via email, everything else will be right here on the blog.




WHO/WHERE/WHEN


TV: CBS

TV: ESPN


Thursday, February 19, 2015

Minnesota and at #16 Maryland

It's just a beautiful thing.

I could watch this team every day for the rest of my life and never get bored. That Penn State game started out as straight fire - 8/10 from the field, Penn State struggling to score, cruise control on the verge of being enabled. But then things slowed down. We started missing shots - easy shots. Penn State was tossing up junk that was finding the bottom of the net. And the end result was a familiar one as the team headed to the airport with another road win in their pocket. I suppose that would be their collective pocket. One giant pocket filled with road wins! ELITE POCKET

9 straight B1G wins. 24-2. #1 offense in the country with the best player in the country leading the charge. Clinching at least a share of the conference title can happen as early as this weekend.

Believe it or not, we're less than a month away from Selection Sunday. Time flies when you're having fun, and nothing is more fun than winning. My advice has not and will not change: enjoy every fucking second of this team. You will not see a better one in Madison. Not any time soon.



CHICAGO BADGERS: Heading up to Madison on Friday. Cannot wait. Do your thing.

SPAM ALERT: Apparently if you put a million pictures in your email, everybody's spam filter catches it and ERRONEOUSLY marks it as spam. If you don't see anything from me by Friday, check your spam folder. Also, when you drag it to your inbox (YOU BETTER DRAG IT TO YOUR INBOX), make sure you select to do that action with all future mail from the sender. I AM NOT SPAM



WHO/WHERE/WHEN



TV: ESPN


TV: ESPN



Thursday, February 12, 2015

Illinois & at Penn State


I've always had a lot of respect for the UW-Madison Police Department. Being police in a big college town seems like a cushy job, but I can't imagine it's easy. Drunk people are IMPOSSIBLE to reason with. Most of the kids are coming from sheltered little backgrounds where mommy and daddy were there to get them out of any trouble they may have wandered into. But from my experiences, the police in Madison were always pretty fair.

Fast forward a few years after graduation and UWPD has evolved to the point where they're tweeting with college football coach parody accounts and getting picked up by national media sites. Pretty sweet. But something caught my eye on Twitter the other day that really shook me:



Fucking A. That's awful. And it's not like Rex was just some ordinary, run-of-the-mill K9 dog. Rex was the fucking ELITE SECRET SERVICE of the K9 unit:
He was called upon to protect countless national and international dignitaries — sitting and former presidents, vice presidents, first ladies, presidential candidates and other high profile politicians, entertainers, and even the Dalai Lama. Driscoll said their protection of His Holiness was the highlight of his protection duties with Rex.
Rex was a goddamn HERO. Kinda dog you wish you could take your boots off with at the end of a long day sniffin' bombs and crack open a cold one or two. And, EARS. Look at Rex's magnificent ears! Those are the ears of a dog you want on your side when the terrorists come. German Shepherds actually smell through their ears, so the bigger and pointier ears on a Shepherd, the better they are at sniffing out bombs. Needless to say, Rex could sniff with the best of them.

I've lost a dog before. It's absolutely miserable. My family's dog gave us every reason to dislike him. We had an in-ground pool and he was PETRIFIED of water. He shed like a goddamn yeti. He'd take off at lightning speed the second he saw an opening to escape, making us search the whole damn neighborhood for him. He wasn't about 'fetch'. But he was our dog, and nothing else mattered. I can only imagine what it felt like losing a HERODOG like Rex.

PS - 
Aside from his hard, dependable work, Rex was well loved at the UW-Madison Police Department. Every morning, for nearly 11 years, Rex brightened everyone’s day by making his “morning rounds” – going from office to office to say hello, and asking for a treat. Sometimes he’d even make an afternoon round.
I want a Rex in my office.

PPS -




Sleep well, sweet prince.



CHICAGO BADGERS: If the Badgers play a game on #SecondSaturday and no one drinks during it... did it even happen? ALL HAIL #SECONDSATURDAY. At this point everyone that knows me HATES me because I've been mashing #SecondSaturday down their throats every single time we happen upon a weekend blessed with a #SecondSaturday. Working on President's Day? HAVE YOU NO RESPECT FOR THE FOUNDING FATHERS? I don't even know if there's an intersection betwixt the Founding Fathers and the presidents we celebrate on President's Day. All I know is that I don't have to work and therefore Sunday is officially henceforth known as #SecondSaturday (this weekend only).