Friday, November 9, 2012

College Basketball is Back


The most exciting game on hardwood is back tonight, tipping off at 5 p.m., officially marking the countdown to March Madness.  Tom Izzo's no. 14 Michigan State will battle Kevin Ollie's new look UConn team.  Last season, UConn lost players to the NBA and to transfers after the NCAA has suspended them from both the Big East and NCAA Championships for academic violations. 

Michigan State is favored in the game tonight, coming from across the pond at Ramstein Airbase in Germany.  This game marks the first regular season college basketball game in history to be played overseas, but it won't be the first to be played in an out-of-the-ordinary location. 

Ohio State and Marquette will face off aboard the USS Yorktown in Charleston, S.C., Florida and Georgetown will be aboard the USS Bataan in Jacksonville, Fla., and Syracuse will take on San Diego State from the USS Midway Museum in San Diego, Calif.  The 'Cuse-SDSU game will tip-off Sunday because of the strong chance of wind and rain Friday evening.

Each team will be sporting custom uniforms for each game, consisting of their team colors as a camouflage design.  Normally, gimmicky uniforms fall flat on their face, but these uniforms aren't just about the look.  Last year, when Michigan State took on North Carolina in the first Carrier Classic, every player wore the same name on their backs -- "U.S.A."

Now, for the picks.  The losing streak has to end eventually right?  I'm gonna go for the upset -- with a side of bias -- and take UConn over State in the opening game.  Ohio State should take down Marquette in a solid game, with the best game coming from Jacksonville, where Florida will take down Georgetown.  On Sunday, Syracuse will handle San Diego State, no matter the weather.

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