March "Real Madness" Begins

The Buffs lead the Pac-12 Charge Into the NCAA Tournament - (Photo via SBN)

The high school tournaments, conference tournaments, selection shows, and even the early round games of the "other" tournaments have happened by now. They were all great, but they were also just the appetizer.

Even the NCAA Tournament First Round Play-In games have come and gone, and now its time for some "Real" March Madness. A quarter of the 64 teams with a shot bracket line to the NCAA National Championship will be eliminated to day, and another quarter tomorrow.

If you are associated with or a fan of one of those 64, its go time. But even if your team was relegated to one of those other tournaments, or is in that other big NCAA Dance (the women's tournament, which won't begin to go mad until Saturday), the excitement level and sensory overload of all day and all night basketball, and basketball bands and fans, and the brackets you are having a contest to see who can come closest to going 0-for-67 on, make today and tomorrow must see somewhere, somehow.

The Pac-12 has always been a sharing sort, and that quarter million each game appearance nets, goes into the common kitty, along with the bowl and tv deal money, to be divied up later. Further, right or wrong, the nationwide perception of everyone in the conference is affected by how everyone else does, especially when everyone is looking. And never will be more people be looking than in the big dance. Even at the games on truTV.

Today, 3 teams for the Pac are in action, and 3 more go tomorrow.

Colorado (23-8, 8-10, and an 8 seed) leads things off, going up against Pittsburgh (25-9, 11-7 in the ACC, and a 9 seed) in the South Region, in Orlando, FL, at 10:40 AM PDT. TBS has the coverage of the Buffs and the Panthers.

Before that one's even over, Oregon (23-9, 10-8, and a 7 seed) takes on BYU (23-11, 13-5 in the WCC, and a 10 seed) in the West Region, in Milwaukee, WI, at 12:10 PM PDT. It's a rematch of a preseason contest the Ducks won against the Cougars 100-96 in overtime, and a great game to catch while eating your lunch. truTV has the game.

Speaking of truTV (is there a falseTV?), where can you find it?

If you have satellite, DirecTV is channel 246 (HD) and DISH Network is channel 242 (HD).

If you don't have satellite then there is also a nifty tool on truTV's website in the upper-right corner that allows you to check what channel the games are on with your cable provider, if there is one.

If you discover truTV isn't available, it begs the question why aren't you on a satellite system anyway, but there is an alternative, the same one you can use at work if you have a computer but no tv.

In addition to every game being televised, every game is also being streamed live via March Madness Live. (Though replays aren't an option.)

The last game of the day involving a Pac-12 team is at 6:40 PM PDT when Arizona St. (21-10, 10-8 and a 10 seed) takes on Texas (23-10, 11-7 in the Big XII, and a 7 seed) in the Midwest Regional, though its also in Milwaukee, WI. CBS has this one, as the Pac gets some over-the-air exposure (there are still sets using an antena!), and more importantly, every satellite and cable system has the channel, AND in a place someone will find it!

So watch and enjoy, and drop your picks and observations in the comments below!

Andy_Wooldridge@yahoo.com

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