It's just that last week, we had Tiger and Phil at Doral in the best tourney in years. This week, we had Brett Wetterich threatening to win the Honda Classic. Or Pat Perez. Or Geoff Ogilvy. Thank goodness for Vijay Singh and Padraig Harrington playing the role of parents at the slumber party, entering the kids' room around 10 p.m. and shouting at them to turn off the TV, get in their sleeping bags and go to sleep.

I sort of lost track of the Honda during the weekend, then tuned in late thinking I'd see Wetterich's final hole, to try to get into the guy's story. No dice: Kids' swim time at the pool was over, and Vijay and Padraig were on the playoff hole. It works like that in golf sometimes. Veej and Padraig hang around, decide to shoot 64 and 63 on Sunday, then bicker amongst themselves for $990,000.

Good to see the guy who won will be up for buying a round this Thursday.

Fifth Seed: The Cooler's Favorite Tourney Teams
Quick, then, our final Bracket Thoughts, or Teams We Love as the tourney begins:

  • Georgia Tech: For some reason, I enjoy Will Bynum as much as any player in the land; plus, coach Paul Hewitt is unafraid to break out the long-forgotten camel's-hair blazer, a staple from my dad's wardrobe in the 1970s.

  • Vermont: Taylor Coppenrath is the big-man version of Teen Wolf; plus, any coach with a morning radio show is OK by Cooler standards.

  • Nevada: The Reno-based Wolfpack are one of a slew of little schools from the West who will get thoroughly dissed by the insufferable ACC-heads and Big East-o-philes who believe basketball dies somewhere around the greater Champaign-Urbana area. That bile spewed, let's take a moment to salute Pacific, St. Mary's, Utah State and, naturally, Gonzaga. As the Cooler's favorite surfer-stoner fan said at the Michigan-UCLA football game in '89: We play some ball on the West Coast!

  • Oklahoma State: The Cowboys were the first team in the history of CBS' Team-Cam to not erupt in joy at the sight of their name on the TV screen. They knew they were a lock, even a No. 2 or 3 seed, so they were enjoying a team meal after winning the Big 12 tourney. Why CBS chose to give them a Team-Cam shot, when those things should strictly be reserved for the Northern Iowas of the world, is beyond me, but it was worth it to see only half the team look up, and one of them, a big white guy, give a half-hearted fist pump, before returning to his ribs and chicken. Plus, I believe Eddie Sutton once coached against James Naismith.

  • Illinois: I believe, Illini! Your ball movement, your defense, your guard play and Bruce Weber's you-can't-root-against-him story line make you The Cooler favorite.

    Like March Madness, you can't possibly disappoint.

    E-mail Brian Murphy at page2murphy@yahoo.com.



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