FBL Varsity

February Madness Diary, Entry II

By  Last updated: 6th September 2009

With the Hornets of Alabama State the last team to join the field of 64, February Madness is about to begin.  The and the FFL Network studios are coming to you live now with today’s results from the East Regional games in College Park, MD.


1 Middle Beach 101
16 Alabama St. 59


No surprises here.  The Admirals were expected to dominate and dominate they did.  DeJuan Blair (20/18/1/0/2) and Jerel McNeal (22/6/7/1/0) turned in dominant performances, and Middle Beach had 7 players score in double digits.  Guard Brandon Brooks of Alabama State put up a superlative 33/4/5/1/0 line but he had scant offensive support from his teammates, and that one-dimensionality caused the Hornets to fall behind and have little chance of keeping things competitive.  The takeaway message from this game may actually be the lackluster Middle Beach defense.  While the Admirals racked up an expected 174 raw offensive points, they only had 24 defensive points, a less than stellar showing for a team looking to win it all.

4 Washington 65
13 Virginia Commonwealth 61


The VCU Rams didn’t have the upset magic this year, as they lost a close contest to Washington here in College Park  VCU’s senior guard Eric Maynor (22/4/9/1/0) made plays all around the court this afternoon, but the Colonial Athletic Association champion Rams came up short.  The Huskies were led by senior forward Jon Brockman (16/14/2/2/0) and senior guard Justin Dentmon (22/1/2/3/0).

5 Brigham Young 65
12 Butler 64


In another one of the early afternoon tilts the BYU Cougars took on the Butler Bulldogs, and the Mountain West champions just barely staved off an upset by the 12 seed.  Junior swingman Jonathan Tavernari (22/7/1/0/0) and sophomore guard Jackson Emery (19/6/2/2/0) had great offensive days for BYU, combining for 6-8 shooting outside the arc.  However, Brigham Young’s lackluster defense (only 15 defensive points on the day) is going to give some bracketologists pause when considering whether BYU can advance to the Sweet 16.  Even an average defensive performance would have put this game out of reach — instead, BYU had to squeak this one out.  A young Butler team kept this one closer than it should have been, with freshmen Gordon Hayward (G-F, 18/6/3/2/1) and Shelvin Mack (G, 12/4/4/1/0) and sophomores Matt Howard (F, 19/8/0/0/2) and Zach Hahn (G, 15/2/3/2/0) all making key contributions.  Butler will be a team to watch in upcoming seasons.  Meanwhile, BYU will play Washington in the Round of 32.

9 DUI 60
8 Siena 59


The fans in College Park really got their money’s worth today, as the DUI-Siena matchup was the third game of the day decided by two baskets or less. The DUI Smoke Monster’s season was simply saved today by sophomore Jeremy Hazell (22/5/2/1/0), who over the course of this year has developed into the team’s primary offensive threat. Robert Mitchell (14/4/2/0/2) and Jeff Adrien (13/9/1/1/1) weren’t dominating, but they had a solid inside presence that forced the Saints to rely on their outside shot, which didn’t work out so well (only 41.7% on the day). The Saints, for their part, put up an impressive showing for a mid-major team taking on a talented power-conference rival. They scored 42 defensive points on 9 steals and 8 blocks, and that alone almost took down the Dharma team. Top performances were turned in by junior forward Alex Franklin (23/11/0/3/2) and big man Ryan Rossiter (14/18/1/1/4), who banged around in the paint with Mitchell and Adrien all day. Now, however, Dharma University of Illinois will have to go on to face Middle Beach College, which is sure to be the team’s toughest test of the season.

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