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The Russell Report: Preparing for March Madness!

Published: Mar. 15, 2021 at 5:26 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - I’m sure some Gator basketball fans are not happy today with where Florida is seeded in the NCAA tournament and few people believe this team will make much noise in the tournament.

I get it. I can understand why you might be frustrated with a season that has been hard to watch at times because the play has been so up and down. But I’m here to tell you, given what happened to Keyontae Johnson, given all the starts and stops in the season because of COVID, it is an accomplishment to make it to the tournament.

And if you’re not happy with that, be happy with the play of Tre Mann. His game has elevated big time right before our eyes. So for anyone who says players don’t get better under Mike White...Think again. My advice: Enjoy being part of the dance!

So let the madness begin! It’s one of my favorite times of the year as the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments crank up! We all fill out those brackets and pick games and teams we know little about, but that is so fun to do. So if you’re not completely happy with Florida, let me give you some other reasons why other fan bases are kickin’ it right now.

Think they’re happy at Georgetown today, where Hoyas legend Patrick Ewing gets them back in the tournament for the first time since 2015. Think they’re stoked at Iona where coach rick Pitino sends his record-tying fifth different team to the dance. They were a nine seed in their own conference tournament by the way. Say what you want about Pitino but the sucker can coach! Think the fans at Drexel are geeked. They’re in the tournament for the first time in 25 years, a six seed in their conference tournament. And how about Hartford -- Go Hawks! They make the tournament for the first time in school history after they were denied a chance last year because of COVID.

The women’s tournament could be one of the most competitive in recent years. And how about the SEC! Texas A&M, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky and Arkansas all among the top 16 seeds for the tournament. Not bad!

So let’s celebrate hoops and the NCAA tournament with a little Dickie V... Time to watch the diaper dandies, the PTP’ers, and the high risers. March Madness, it’s Awesome, baby!

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