March 29, 2014

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle:

A place to discuss the sports stories that aren't making news, share links that aren't quite front-page material, and diagram plays on your hand. Remember to count to five Mississippi before commenting in anger.

posted by huddle to general at 06:00 AM - 9 comments

The Midwest bracket in the NCAA basketball tournament turned out to be as crazy as expected. I said it at the start, though, that there is no reason a Kentucky squad should ever be a number eight seed. They fill their roster with the best young talent in the country each and every year and, like we're witnessing, generally have the capability to win and advance against anyone. It really seems the committee wanted to throw the kitchen sink at Wichita State in order to have to give them a number one seed. A few of the teams in the Midwest should have been placed elsewhere. Wichita State was a very strong team, played one of the most entertaining games of the tournament against Kentucky, but came up short. Granted a loss can happen to anyone at any time but I would have liked to have seen them a bit longer.

posted by dyams at 07:46 AM on March 29, 2014

Palace upset Chelsea. Cracker of a game, but I don't think Chelsea are out of it yet.

posted by owlhouse at 09:15 PM on March 29, 2014

I'm hoping that that win for Palace means they don't ask for Johnny Williams back from on loan at our lot. He's on 24 hour recall at Ipswich and we'd like to keep him every day they forget he's with us.

His is the second goal in these highlights. Not a bad strike, if you like 30 yard thunderbastards.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:21 PM on March 29, 2014

Mr B. You're deliberately winding me up. I know you are.

posted by owlhouse at 09:32 PM on March 29, 2014

Chelsea aren't out of it but they no longer control their own destiny. Only Liverpool and Man City have that in hand, and I think the title goes to one of them. I know which one I WANT it to go to ;)

posted by billsaysthis at 09:43 PM on March 29, 2014

Meanwhile, a casual stroll through some weird cricket bowling figures.

posted by owlhouse at 09:52 PM on March 29, 2014

I didn't know you were following a team in the Championship, Bismarck. I've become a fan of Sheffield Wednesday. I was hoping Sunderland would forget about loanee Connor Wickham earlier this season (18 appearances, 9 goals), but no such luck.

posted by rcade at 07:59 AM on March 30, 2014

Wickham, of course, is a product of the Ipswich youth academy. Another player who left a team where he was the big fish for a Premier side where he rarely even gets a game.

Ipswich was my Dad's team, because he was evacuated out to the coast as a kid during WWII after the Luftwaffe decided to close his school for him. Permanently.

He took me to my first Ipswich game in 1978, which was also the first time I saw someone lose enough blood I thought they would die. Ipswich's Brian Talbot had cut his face scoring the opening goal, but then WBA Captain John Wile cut his head and played the rest of the game looking like an extra from a zombie movie.

These days if you get a spot of blood on your shirt you have to go off, but back then Wile played a large part of the game looking like this:

In May, two days after my seventh birthday, he took me to Wembley to see Ipswich-Arsenal in the FA Cup final and that was mind blowing.

I remember feeling like I couldn't breathe from the number of people there, and then by the time we'd hit the frame of the goal three times and the game was still 0-0 I was experiencing serious mental trauma. When we finally scored I thought I'd explode.

In retrospect, having your introduction to the game be a winning FA Cup semi-final, followed by winning the cup itself was a bad idea. We had a fantastic five years following that too... the hope generated by those years still hasn't died. It's the hope that hurts.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:51 AM on March 30, 2014

That was a great side under Bobby Robson. Mick Mills, Paul Mariner and one of the best defenders I ever saw - Kevin Beattie, whose career was blighted by injury, but I always wished Derby had signed him to replace Todd or MacFarland.

posted by owlhouse at 10:33 AM on March 30, 2014

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