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todayMarch 23, 2022 2

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March Madness Week 1 Recap
By: Emmet Kenney
March Madness returned with a bang this past weekend. It was a four-day stretch filled with upsets, overtime, and some crazy finishes. The biggest story that came out of the 1st weekend is the fact that the 15 seeded St. Peter’s Peacocks stunned both 2 seed Kentucky and 7 seed Murray State to be the 3rd 15 seed to make the sweet sixteen.
Another stunning upset that people did not see happening was the Richmond Spiders upsetting the 5 seeded Iowa Hawkeyes. A lot of people had Iowa going pretty far and even some had them making a run to the Final Four. Iowa was coming off of a Big Ten Tournament Championship and the Spiders just shut down the explosive Iowa offense to pull the stunner.
The Mountain West was proud to get four teams into the big dance, but all of them, unfortunately, lost in the first round so by the end of Thursday the Mountain West no longer had a presence in the big dance.
The 1st weekend of March Madness also exposed some glaring issues within the 1 seeds throughout the tournament. The Baylor Bears were the first 1 seed to fall in the tournament with their overtime loss against North Carolina. The Bears trailed by as much as 25 in the 2nd half, but somehow found a way to force overtime, but could not get over the hump eventually losing in the extra frame. The three other 1 seeds had to really grind out victories to advance to the sweet sixteen, with Gonzaga and Kansas being pushed all the way to the end by Memphis and Creighton respectfully. Arizona, on the other hand, had a controversial end to regulation against TCU that forced overtime. The Wildcats were able to pull out a 5-point overtime victory, but it was definitely not pretty for any of the 1 seeds this past weekend.
Some other major storylines that came from the first weekend are the number of overtime games that happened. Including the first four matchup between Notre Dame and Rutgers, there were six overtime games in five days of action. The record for the most overtime games in a single March Madness tournament is seven and this year is well on its way to making a new record. Another major storyline from the first weekend was the officiating was awful and it took away from the excitement of some games. Across the board, the officials were missing critical calls or making horrible calls that resulted in technical fouls or players being ejected. The officials go through their own March Madness where the best crews advance and hopefully that problem gets resolved for the Sweet Sixteen so we can enjoy how amazing the basketball has been so far in the tournament.

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