UCLA will be crowned champions

Published 1:26 pm Thursday, March 20, 2008

By Staff
Commentary by KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
After painstakingly reading through publication after publication, getting on team web sites and seeking the guidance of the so-called experts, I’m finally ready to make my bold prediction: Valparaiso will win the inaugural College Basketball Invitational.
Never heard of it? Don’t fret. I didn’t know about the tournament until I happened to stumble across it on our sports wire.
And I like to think I’m somewhat basketball savvy. I once “erupted” for four points in a recreation league game during my high school days — a long, LONG time ago.
I can still remember draining that long jumper over Scott Huff, who happened to be a former Hudson Explorer!
After my four-point explosion, Huff resorted to tugging my jersey, tripping me and other dirty tactics to keep “Hot Shot” out of the scoring column.
I was going to do something really drastic in return by calling in a sound-off but, unfortunately, our local paper at the time didn’t seek input from brave, anonymous sources.
Still, I hold on to that sweet jumper in my memory banks, recalling the ball trickling through the net as “One Shining Moment” plays in my head.
So who will be left standing when that glorious song plays April 7 after the NCAA championship game in San Antonio?
I’m going with UCLA. The Bruins will win a thrilling 82-76 decision over the Tennessee Volunteers.
My Sweet 16 teams are UCLA, Connecticut, Xavier, Duke, Memphis, Pittsburgh, Kentucky, Texas, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Louisville, Tennessee, Kansas, Clemson, USC and Georgetown.
The Elite 8 will be UCLA, Duke, Memphis, Texas, Notre Dame, Tennessee, Kansas and Georgetown.
The Final Four will consist of UCLA, Texas, Tennessee and Georgetown, with UCLA and Tennessee playing for the title.
On a side note, I’ll be pulling for the Bowling Green Falcons to win the Women’s National Invitation Tournament (WNIT). I think Ohio State takes the NIT, and Tennessee sends Candace Parker off in style with the Women’s NCAA tournament title.
Kevin Travis is the sports editor of the Washington Daily News. You may reach him at 940-4217, or by e-mail at Kevin@wdnweb.com.