Who Doesn’t Belong Now? : VCU in Final Four

Carla Parker, Jersey Girl Sports Contributor “They don’t belong in the tournament!” That’s all I heard on Selection Sunday when the Men’s NCAA Tournament Selection Committee picked the Rams of Virginia Commonwealth University to play in the “big dance” this year. Many didn’t understand why the Rams, who were 23-11 going into the tournament, were selected over Colorado (21-3) and Virginia Tech (21-11), who plays in tougher conferences (now doesn’t that phrase sounds familiar). Some believed the Selection Committee gave them a spot because of VCU’s non-conference 89-85 win over UCLA and its 79-63 win over then No. 25 George Mason in the CAA semi-final. But for whatever reason, the Selection Committee felt that VCU did do enough to earn a spot in the big dance, and VCU just shocked the world and proved that they can dance with the best of them. The 11th-seeded Rams are definitely this year’s Cinderella story. After knocking of No. 1 Kansas in the Southwest regional championship - and destroying my bracket and five million other brackets - VCU is in the Final Four and will face last year’s Cinderella team, Butler, in Houston on Saturday. VCU, who were underdogs throughout the entire tournament, stunned the Jayhawks 71-61 on Sunday, becoming just the third 11th seed to make the Final Four. Kansas was the last top seed standing in the tournament and was favored to win. “Once again we felt like nobody really thought we could win going into this game,” VCU coach Shaka Smart said. “Our guys have done a phenomenal job of putting all the doubters aside, all the people that didn’t believe in us, and going out to do their job.” Yes they did. Coach Smart was definitely smart in keeping his team focus and having them believing in themselves. The team tuned out the naysayers and played their game. And that’s all the needed to do. Although I was one of the non-believers, I’m happy that VCU proved me and others wrong. Their journey to the Final Four taught us that you don’t have to have a ‘big name’ in order to be a winner. And when critics say you don’t deserve it, don’t argue with them. Let your work speak for you.

Author: Jersey Girl Sports

Jersey Girl Sports is a lifestyle brand dedicated to the millions of women who like to watch sports. We present sports from the female perspective–the way we see it, how we talk about it and what we have to say about it. It’s sports on OUR terms. We can enjoy sports as much as any man, just with better shoes.

11 thoughts on “Who Doesn’t Belong Now? : VCU in Final Four”

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  2. Well, congrats to UConn. But the tournament seems a bit predictabl­e. Since 1985, a number one seed has won the tournament 59% of the time. The number two seed has won 4 times as has the number three seed. Only once did a number four seed win and that was Arizona in 1997. So seeded teams at four or better win the tournament 93% of the time. A number six seed won in 1988 [Kansas] and a number eight won in 1985 [Villanova­]. There must be a way to shake the tournament up. First round #1 plays #16, etc. Should first round pairing be a random draw? Don’t know. Any ideas out there?

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