March is the best time of the year for a sports fan. Major League Baseball spring training is in full swing (pun intended), the NHL and NBA playoffs are merely weeks away, and the NCAA tournament provides non-stop action and debates about who will win it all.
Let's start with NCAA Tournament:
Many think that Temple should have been ranked as a three or four seed instead of a five, especially since they won their third straight A-10 Title.
They have a very difficult opponent in the sharp shooting, senior laden team of Cornell (possible Cinderella) in the first round. Luckily for Temple, they have a young squad that will grow from this experience and be poised to make a big run next year at the very least. If anyone coach knows how to beat the Big Red, it is former Penn Quaker Coach Fran Dunphy.
The other Big 5 team in the tournament, Villanova, has a much easier road to travel as the two seed. I personally think Temple will make it to the Sweet Sixteen and lose to Kentucky (and their three first road draft picks Wall, Cousins, and Patterson).
I just hope John Calipari does not have another press conference with Fran Dunphy like he did with John Chaney.
I think Villanova will make it to the Final Four and fall to the other Wildcats from Kentucky.
Sidenote:The John Wall dance needs more to it to have any value. A simple move of the arm is boring.
Phillies and Sixers:
Following in the theme of being in a festive mood, there are two names that will become a major part of a Philadelphia sports fans vernacular and I don't want people to confuse them.
The fact that Halladay's nickname is "Doc" will only confuse fans more if they are unsure what sport or athlete people are referring too.
Here are the stat lines from Monday's performances by the like named Philadelphia athletes:
Halladay: 5 innings, 3 hits, 2 walks, 1 earned run, and 6 strikeouts.
Roy Halladay has pitched 10 innings in spring training so far. His numbers are as follows: 14 k's, 0.90 ERA (1 earned run), and a 0.80 WHIP (6 hits and 2 walks).
Going into Monday night game against the New York Knicks, here is what Jrue Holiday averaged over his last ten games: 12 points per game, 4.5 assists, 2.6 rebounds, 1.2 steals, and was shooting 49% from the field/ 55% 3 pointers/ 83% free throws in 32 minutes of action per game.
In the 94-84 lose against the Knicks Holiday went for 18 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals, and one nice block in which he hustled back on defense. Holiday is top 10 among rookies in assists and steals, as well as top 20 in scoring.
Although the Sixers and Phillies are two teams going in opposite directions, these are two players that will be beloved by fans in Philadelphia for their effort, grit, dedication, and talent.