Jim Barnes.com
Wofford Gets a Shot at Wounded Wildcats 
© Jim Barnes -2019 - All Rights Reserved
Saturday, March 23, 2019
E-Mail to: j ab34@mchsi.com    
Richard   Pitino   will   not   have   as   much   revenge   on   his   mind   facing   conference   foe   Michigan   State   than   the   school   that fired   his   father.   The   younger   Pitino   obtained   a   high   level   of   relief   when   his   Minnesota   team   wiped   the   floor   with   Louisville;     his   father   and   the   school   are   involved   in   an   aging   law   suit   and   are   as   friendly   as   Trump   and   Pelosi.      When   they   met   at Michigan State in the regular season, the Spartans coasted, 79-55. State will win again, the margin  a little smaller? It   is   very   doubtful   that   Kentucky   will   have,   or   even   need,   the   services   of   leading   scorer   and   rebounder   P.   H. Washington. The   Wildcats   have   been   hampered   most   of   the   2019   campaign   with   injuries.   P.   J.      has   switched   from   a   soft   to hard   cast   and   trainers   are   indicating   he   will   be   held   out   this   weekend   only.   The   Wildcats   face   pesky   Wofford.   fresh   from   an 84-68 rout of Seton Hall - playing  after am almost  perfect outing  is difficult to repeat. Despite the line, I like the underdog. The   Big-10   has   been   rather   hot   in   the   Final   Four,   giving   Michigan   rising   hopes   versus   an   inconsistent   Florida   team   that has   dropped   three   of   its   last   four. Twice   during   February   and   March,   when   the   schedule   was   rugged,   the   Gators   suffered   a pair of three game skids. (The Big-10 is 7-1 in the main tournament, only Wisconsin has lost.) Villanova   and   Purdue   will   be   a   close   defensive   battle,   Murray   State   and   Florida   State   might   also   be   tighter   than   the Democratic Presidential Primary where one or two old hands try to navigate through a youthful mostly unknown group. Maryland   and   Louisiana   State   is   a   virtual   toss-up,   the   winner   depends   on   which   team   is   more   ready   than   the   other   to win the game. Neither has shown the kind of consistency to capture a victory at this level. In   the   NIT,   Arkansas   is   at   Indiana,   and   the   matchup   between   Lipscomb   and   UNC-Greensoro   should   be   in   the   Final Four and not a garage sale. Upsets   again   pleased   fans   who   watch   the   F4   just   for   entertainment   (or   have   money   riding   on   the   underdog).   Iowa,   a four   point   dog,   upset   Cincinnati   with   a   torrid   finish   79-72,   Mississippi,   a   one-point   favorite,   was   demolished   by   Oklahoma 95-72 and Ohio State held on to down Iowa State 62-59 (Cyclones a five-point choice.) Liberty    and    UC-Irvine    had    the    most    unexpected    triumphs.    Liberty    edged    Mississippi    State    80-76    and    UC-Irvine shocked Kansas State 70-64. LeBron   James   could   not   solve   the   Lakers’   playoff   miseries,   once   again   Los   Angeles   (and   James,   too)   will   be   absent when the NBA post-season opens in mid-April.  If all goes well, play should end before next Thanksgiving.
Trying      to      become successfully    active    again after      six      years      is      a challenge   that   I   was   told not   to   attempt   on   a   daily basis. Friends   in   the   sports analyst      business      con- fessed   no   one   is   making any   money   and   there   are too many sites. In   my   younger   years (aided   by   good   friend   Jim   Feist)   an   average of 1,300 visitors per day came to my site. I   did   not   intend   ever   to   return   daily,   but the   new   ODI   did   so   well   in   test   runs   that   a decision    was    made    to    publish    basketball through   the   Final   Four   -   and   I   will   continue until then. (Link-Daily forecast). Once   the   tournament   is   over   my   time will   be   spent,   exclusively,   on   the   format   of   the old Journal of Handicapping . The    2019    Baseball    Preview    is    an example of what will be published. Each    issue    will    be    published    upon completion..if   it   sells   “great.”   If   not,   at   least my   brain   is   being   exercised.   This   site   will   be updated daily with handicapping data.
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