By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support local journalism.
Everlasting Joy 3-30
Madness reaching its climax
Placeholder Image

Buddy, it should be a thrilling Final Four.
College basketball’s biggest dance has come down to the best player, the best team, and oddly enough, the best zone defense.
Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield has rocked to sleep any doubts about who is college basketball’s best player. He scored 37 in a surprisingly easy win over Oregon on Saturday to catapult the Sooners into the Final Four.
A walking jump shot, Hield is averaging 29.3 points per game in the tournament, scoring over 30 points twice. Even though defenders have been clinging to him tighter than batter on a corndog, Hield has been giving lessons on how to make contested 3-pointers.
Hield may be the best player, but North Carolina looks to be the best team. The Tar Heels are as physical as a dump truck and are finally living up to their preseason billing as the top enchilada.
There’s not a team in the land that’s going to outrebound North Carolina, making a record 19th Final Four appearance. The only way I see the Tar Heels losing is if their perimeter shooting takes a beach trip.
Syracuse is the surprise of the Final Four as the first-ever No. 10 seed to make it this far. It’s a Syracuse team ESPN projected as one of the bubble teams left out of the tournament the day before Selection Sunday.
But The Orange are still standing after rallying to beat a Virginia team that forgot how to dribble. Syracuse is known for its nightmarish 2-3 zone, orchestrated by 71-year-old coach Jim Boeheim, but it was the full-court press which allowed The Orange to claw their way back against Virginia.
Boeheim has never had a losing season in his 40 years at Syracuse and has one national title, in 2003, thanks to Carmelo Anthony.
Villanova makes its third Final Four appearance, billing itself as a team without a star. The Wildcats have built a 33-5 record and spent time ranked No. 1 this year, yet most view Villanova’s win over Kansas as a stunner. According to ESPN, just 2.6 percent of all entries in its Tournament Challenge had Villanova winning the national championship.
So how is this year’s madness going to end?
Villanova is a team that craves respect, but the Wildcats aren’t going to get it here. I’m picking Oklahoma and the Buddy system to advance to the title game.
Syracuse sees itself as a team of destiny. I see The Orange as a team with its luck about to end as North Carolina pounds its way to victory.
Who wins when the best team faces the best player?
UCLA and Duke hold the record for most points scored in a championship game with 181 scored in 1964. That record could be in jeopardy when UNC beats Oklahoma on Monday night.