“Playing in the N.I.T. is not an embarrassment.”

–Seth Greenberg, coah of Virginia Tech.
nit-logo-328No one is surprised that the Georgetown Hoyas are nowhere to be found in the NCAA brackets.

It is interesting to note that the Hoyas actually beat three of the top twelve seeds in the NCAA tournament (UConn, Memphis, and Syracuse).

On the other hand, three Big East teams that handily defeated Georgetown were not even invited to the N.I.T. (St. John’s, Seton Hall, Cincinnati).

If I were a St. John’s fan, I would be incensed that the Hoyas are in the N.I.T. and the Red Storm are not. After all, St. John’s beat Georgetown twice in eight days, and that was six days ago.

I searched St. John’s fan-blogs to find the justifiable rage. But the ragtag lot of Red Storm fans are resigned to their fate. Their team is going to the College Basketball Invitational.

tybalt-cardAt the N.I.T., the following could happen, and it would make life livable again:

The Hoyas beat Baylor, then Virginia Teach, then another team, then Davidson, then Notre Dame!

This dream scenario involves delightful re-matches.* It is also highly improbable.

(* Notre Dame beat us on New Year’s Eve. Davidson knocked us out of the NCAA tournament last Easter. Also, a Georgetown-Virginia Tech game would be great.)

In Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Tybalt has an excellent short speech. Benvolio protests that he has drawn his sword only to keep the peace, and the truculent Prince of Cats replies:

What, drawn, and talk of peace? I hate the word,
As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee.
1.1.67-68

Well, let me say that I hate the phrase “March Madness.”

The phrase is a crass neologism. It is imprecise. It is inaccurate.

I hate the phrase, like I hate hell, all euphemisms, and Duke.

Baylor almost won the Big 12 Championship
Baylor almost won the Big 12 Championship

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