March Madness 2014: Thursday was beautifully crazy

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There’s a good reason we’re so into this.

The first second round of the NCAA tournament reminds us of so many of the reasons that we love sports in the first place. It does so with a glut of 32 games packed into 48 hours, with one exciting moment after another.

Thursday was no exception, as March Madness 2014 got off to a roaring start. Here are a few of the highlights.

1. Player of the night – Carlin Dupree

When North Dakota State’s game with the Oklahoma Sooners went into overtime Thursday night, you, me, Bandit, Razor, my grandmother, the barista from your favorite coffee shop, that chatty guy from work, and Justin Bieber had all played the same number of minutes as NDSU freshman guard Carlin Dupree.

Forced into action, Dupree scored four points in two minutes to seal the victory for the Bison. First he iced two free throws. He followed that up with a contested layup in traffic. This is the same guy who had less than 60 points all season. That, my friends, is a cool story.

2. Your 12-5 upset that wasn’t – North Carolina State blows it

For much of the night it looked like three #12 seeds were going to win: Harvard, North Dakota State, and North Carolina State. Of the three it was NC State who looked like a sure thing as they held a 16 point lead over Saint Louis well into the second half.

People who picked NC State were like this:

carlton-dance

Then the Wolfpack blew their 16 point lead and lost in overtime. People who picked NC State were like this:

Sad2

Naturally fans who were on Twitter took the defeat well.

I’m sure if NC State had known that they were going to make these people upset, they would have made their free throws. Because other than that, what motivation could they possibly have?

USA Today Sports

USA Today Sports

3. That time you almost lost your national champion

Florida was never really at risk, but you better believe that plenty of people nervously watched that box score. Albany hung around long enough that you had to at least entertain the notion that the #1 overall seed Gators were going to be the first to lose to a #16 seed. Yes they did survive, but they sure had to earn it.

Then there was Louisville. After spending the entire week talking about how they got hosed with a #4 seed, they darn near lost to the Manhattan Jespers.

That didn’t happen, but if you combine that near-loss with the other games Thursday night, it was beautifully crazy indeed. Here’s to another day of fun on Friday.

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Tags: March Madness 2014 NCAA NCAA Tournament North Dakota State Bison Oklahoma Sooners

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