Gary Gramling

NCAA Tournament: The Number 1 Seed Who Will Fall Short

  • Hoophead
  • Gary Gramling
  • March 18, 2010, 10:20 AM

There's been a lot of talk this season about how there's no "one dominant team" like North Carolina last season. And I agree with that. There are four dominant teams.

While it's hard to pick a favorite among the four Number 1 seeds in this year's Tournament, I think there's a clear gap between the top four and the rest of college basketball. That's why it's tough to not pick all four top seeds to make the Final Four... with the exception of one Number 1: Duke.

Don't get me wrong, Duke is a great team, clearly worthy of a Number 1 seed. And they have maybe the weakest region in Tournament history to play against. But there are two major red flags that have me dropping Duke out of my bracket before the Final Four.

First is there performance on the road. Record away from home is a good indicator for success in March, because there are no more home games.

Duke won all seven of their "neutral court" games. But three of those were in New York, where they play most years, and three more were in Greensboro, North Carolina for the ACC Tournament, against out of state teams (meaning they were pretty darn close to home games). Of those seven wins, only two (Gonzaga in New York and Georgia Tech in Greensboro) were against NCAA Tournament teams.

Now for the really bad news: Duke was just 5-5 in true road games this year, including 1-4 against NCAA Tournament teams (a win at Clemson, losses at Wisconsin, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, and Maryland). Like I said, there are no "home games" in the Tournament, but Duke might have to play 5th-seeded Texas A&M and/or 3rd-seeded Baylor in Houston, giving both those teams a home-state advantage. There will be a hostile crowd rooting against the Dukies. And that's why I think the Blue Devils will be watching the Final Four from home this year.

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lefty freak, its more like scheyer and co. or coach "K" Krzyzewski and and co.
singler's great (no, wonderful!), but some other guys in the company are better.

I agree. Singler and company are great.

dont necesarily like them but im for them in this tournament

i'm from syracuse and i love them

Wes J is not overrated he is the best player in the country

Too bad, they lost to Butler! Wes J is overrated.

Well that's a shame because they lost to BUTLER!! Ha!

Duke is overrated. They got an easy rode to the final four. West Virginia should have been in their region instead of Villinova.

You must have something wrong with you because Duke is so in the final 4, at least.

I think the final 4 will be West Virginia, Ohio State, Kansas State and Duke. Duke has no one left in their part of the bracket.

you got the WVU part right! (and probably the duke part, too) :D

Ohio state lost, don't you know?

Syracuse is going to the final four, You FOOl

booooooooooooooooooooooo duke

yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay duke

HEY I AGREE ps why is there a cat

Duke has avery easy road to Final 4

They had to play #4 purdue and #3 baylor to get to the final 4. those were tough games.

IKR! (i know right)


i know

cant believe kansas and villinova lost.

both were in my final 4.

Villanova was in your Final Four? C'mon, man.

I had Ohio state, cuse, Purdue, and kentucky. All but kentucky is out.

omg isnt that amazing thats a bbbbbbbbbbbbiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiggggggggggg upset


well haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! wiz cause kansas lost first

I like Duke. Jon Scheyer is cool.


i dont necessarily like them (im a unc fan) but they are in my area so i guess they're ok. plus they are champs my bracket (and i want my bracket to be really good!) so its causing me to make them my favorite team in the tournament. i never thought i'd ever say this, but
GO DUKE!!!!!!!!!!!! :D

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