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KA-THUMP-KA-THUMP-KA-THUMP.... [FLATLINE]

I might well have a heart attack today. Probably before tip.

And if I do, I'll tell you exactly who I hope to meet in heaven: the one with a flat screen TV tuned to CBS. And if that's not an option? I'll cut a deal with the devil faster than you can spell 'e-t-e-r-n-i-t-y'.

This entire season has built towards this game. We've known for months that a monster season could send Texas to Houston. And we've known for months that big, bad Memphis was the odds on favorite to be Houston's top seed.

How good is Memphis?

  • The Tigers were AW's preseason pick to cut down the nets in San Antonio.
  • Michigan State went on a 17-0 second half run against Memphis... and still never got closer than 14 points.
  • They blocked 7 shots, had 4 dunks, 11 layups, and drew 28 fouls against a big, physical Tom Izzo team.
  • They're 36-1, with regular season wins over tournament teams Oklahoma, Connecticut, Austin Peay, USC, Georgetown, Arizona, Siena, and Gonzaga.
  • Despite being a team that flies around the court like an exhibition team, they have the 10th best turnover rate in the entire country.
  • What's that? You love defense and rebounding? This team's got that, too: Top 30 in offensive and defensive rebounding, 4th in Effective FG%, 7th in 3-Point FG%, 8th in Block Percentage.

I could go on, but I think that's quite enough to make the point: this team is a juggernaut.

There's good news, of course. If I were a Memphis blogger, I'd be cautioning Tigers fans about Texas' eye-popping resume:

  • The Longhorns own regular season wins over tournament teams Tennessee, UCLA, Oral Roberts, St. Mary's, Baylor (twice), Oklahoma (three times), Kansas, Texas A&M, and Kansas State.
  • They make Memphis look downright careless with the basketball, leading the nation with a ridiculous 14.2 turnover percentage.
  • They're extremely dangerous with the three ball (38.2%), with five starters who must be defended 20 feet from the basket.
  • Memphis' bread and butter on offense? Two-point baskets? Texas holds opponents to just 42.8% shooting inside the arc, 15th best in the country.
  • And that Tennessee team that gave Memphis its only loss of the season? Texas whipped those Vols by 19 points. On a neutral floor.

This time of year, the juggernauts come in pairs.

We're four hours from tip and I have no idea what I'm going to do with myself. Like I said, I might just have a heart attack.

Hook 'Em.

--PB--