Having trouble deciding how to play the favorites in your NCAA men's basketball tournament bracket? Well, Minnesota Treasure Lindsay Whalen® is here to help. Whalen, who may or may not have to break into Target Field to see a Twins game this year when she returns to Minnesota to play for the Lynx, is a huge college basketball fan. She offers her thoughts here on the Big Dance, and will hopefully be providing updates via Guest Posts a couple more times during the tournament and also as the spring/summer progresses.

[Also, closed-circuit to the angry caller who thought one of our girls' basketball co-Metro Players of the Year really broke someone's ankles: that is just an expression used by basketball players to describe a particularly effective move that beats a defender. No ankles were actually harmed].

Lindsay Whalen knows all about that. Lindsay?



March Madness is finally upon us! 
One of the best times of the year, no doubt; not just because of the great basketball, filling out brackets, trash talking with friends and relatives (for me that is my dad), Jim Nantz, upsets, buzzer-beaters, overtimes, and one shining moments. But March means spring! And spring may be turning into my favorite season. So while I've been playing overseas in Europe now for four years, each time March Madness rolls around means it's almost time to come home and our season over here is winding down. And this year, more than ever, coming "home" is really true. I used to come home for a few days to see some family and friends before heading out to Connecticut to start the season out there. This year of course I will be joining the Lynx at Target Center!
But let us get to the task at hand. Great news with the Gophers men's team joining the field! I thought their celebration was the best and most genuine of all of the celebrations. All of the players were of course excited and you could see in Tubby's face that he was proud of the team and happy for his players and coaching staff. They should be pleased with their draw as well. I don't know too much about Xavier, but the Gophers proved they can play with some of the top teams last weekend in the Big Ten Tournament. Hopefully they can start out playing well and we'll see what happens! And playing in Milwaukee should allow a good contingent of Gopher fans to make the trip to see them play. So a little home court advantage could be a factor next weekend.
Overall, I think most people think Kansas is the best team. They are my pick at the start of the tournament to win it all, although they got a pretty tough draw, even though they are the #1 overall seed. I mean Michigan State is a 5 seed in that bracket. Ohio State is the 2 seed and Georgetown, a team that just made a great run in the Big East Tournament, is the 3 seed. The Midwest sets up as the deepest bracket and the best team in the country is in that bracket. Not sure what happened there with the selection committee.
I also like Kentucky, but they've had so many close calls; I think they're due to get upset somewhere along the way. John Wall is great and has a dance move named after him, but Kentucky's youth scares me a little bit. I also would have said Syracuse as one of my favorites a few weeks ago, but two straight losses and an injury to a key player may have their confidence rattled. Duke gets the third overall seed which was a shock to a lot of people I think. After they won the ACC Tournament I don't think there was a question that they would be a 1 seed, but I don't think anyone thought they would jump ahead of Syracuse.
All in all it will be a great tournament and I can't wait for it to get started!
Well that is all for now! I hope to see many of you out at games this season at Target Center! It's going to be a great summer!
Thank you RandBall for letting me give my 2 cents!
No problem! Also, don't forget everyone: Join RandBall's Redacted Group and make your picks (password: redacted).


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Tuesday (RandBall's NCAA challenge) edition: Wha' Happened?

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Clearance Clarence: Making the St. Paul Saints a Twins farm team?