On Sunday night, after the selection committee unveiled its NCAA Tournament bracket, there was a lot of complaining from coaches, from analysts, from fans – from just about everyone – about snubs and seedings. The complaining continued through Monday and into Tuesday but figures to stop Tuesday night.
That’s when basketball starts.
“It’ll be a great tournament no matter what happened on Sunday, as it always is,” Fox Sports broadcaster Tim Brando said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “The Monday after Selection Sunday is National BitchFest Day. It just is. But it all ends about the time the First Four tips off Tuesday night. Then we see what happens.”
Florida Gulf Coast (20-13) squares off against Fairleigh Dickinson (18-14) at UD Arena in Dayton at 6:40 p.m. ET, followed by Vanderbilt (19-13) versus Wichita State (24-8).
If you think these games don’t matter, well, you had better think again.
“Yes, the First Four does matter,” Brando said. “Who’s to say one of those teams couldn’t make it all the way to Houston? That certainly happened the last time the Final Four was there because VCU was there and Butler was there. It can happen. Everyone gets a case of amnesia when they’re trying to find something to argue about or be pissed off with.”
To be fair, Brando took issue with a few things on Selection Sunday, but it’s not going to ruin the tournament for him.
“Listen, I didn’t like the Vanderbilt choice,” he said. “I really didn’t. I thought that both Georgia and South Carolina in the SEC were better teams. I think Monmouth and Saint Mary’s deserve chances to be in the NCAAs. I really do. But the committee does all that it can with the information they have in front of them. There are (only) so many slots, and when you had as many upsets of No. 1 seeds in the conference tournaments, it meant some of those spots were going to be taken away, even with Louisville and SMU out of the mix. But that’s just the nature of the beast with the NCAA Tournament. The 36 hours after Selection Sunday, everybody’s got to vent their anger. But then suddenly when we tip it off and we start playing, all of that changes. It becomes what happened on the court, where it should be.”