The 2017 Final Four

I got none of them correct on my bracket. A perfect goose egg. According to ESPN, out of 18,797,085 brackets, only 657 guessed them all correctly.

Gonzaga in the Final Four for the first time ever. Coach Mark Few has been so close so many times with so many good teams, and he finally won a regional final.

Oregon is in the Final Four for the first time since 1939. That was the first year of the NCAA tournament. (I doubt they called it the “Final Four” back then.)

South Carolina is in the Final Four for the first time in school history. Before this year, South Carolina hadn’t won a single tournament game since 1973.

North Carolina is really the only one of the Final Four who is old hat. UNC is in for the 20th time. (The other 3 schools have four Final Fours combined.)

So this year we have a 1, 1, 3 and a 7 seed.

For the second straight year and 6th time in the last 8 tournaments, a team from outside the Power 5 is in the Final Four.

In its preseason poll, Sports Illustrated had them ranked this way:

Oregon #4
UNC #6
Gonzaga #9
South Carolina #77

Many of the “experts” told us to watch out for Duke after they won the ACC tournament. Duke didn’t even make the Sweet 16. They were bounced by South Carolina, who also beat Marquette, Baylor and Florida.

Gonzaga defeated South Dakota St., Northwestern, West Virginia and Xavier.

Oregon collected wins over Iona, Rhode Island, Michigan and Kansas.

North Carolina beat Texas Southern, Arkansas, Butler and Kentucky.

Me? I’d love to see Gonzaga win it all.

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