Sweet 16 Schedule: Intriguing Storylines for Friday Night's Games

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIOctober 28, 2016

BLOOMINGTON, IN - DECEMBER 10:  Christian Watford #9 and Victor Oladipo #1 of the Indiana Hoosiers celebrate after Watford made a buzzer beating 3 point shot to beat the Kentucky Wildcats 73-72 in the game at Assembly Hall on December 10, 2011 in Bloomington, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Revenge is always a great plot for any entertainment, and sports is no different. The Kentucky Wildcats will be looking for just that when they take on the Indiana Hoosiers tonight in a Sweet 16 matchup. 

The Hoosiers and Wildcats played a classic regular-season game on December 10. In that game, the Hoosiers handed Kentucky their first loss of the season on this buzzer-beater from Christian Watford:

You better believe Kentucky wants to avenge that loss, as it only dropped two games all season. The Wildcats see themselves as a team destined for the national championship, and all-time greatness. To avenge one of only two losses in the regular season would be big for them.

Indiana wants to prove the loss was no fluke, and it will come out ready to match Kentucky's energy. It should be a great game.

 

It's All in the Wrist

GREENSBORO, NC - MARCH 18:  Kendall Marshall #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels looks on in the second half against the Creighton Bluejays during the third round of the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Greensboro Coliseum on March 18, 2012 in Gree
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Kendall Marshall is one tough dude. The fact that he's even talking about playing in the NCAA tournament a week removed from a broken wrist is something.

He told Robbi Pickeral of ESPN.com:

Every day it's getting better, but it's a day-to-day basis, whether I'm going to play, Marshall said Thursday. "If we had to jump ball right now, I wouldn't be playing.

Truthfully, the Tar Heels are talented enough to defeat Ohio without him, so should they risk further injury by playing him?

My answer is no.

In the grand scheme of things, this kid is a collegiate athlete with dreams of playing in the NBA. He shouldn't be sacrificed for a college basketball game. The competitor in him wants to play, and that's great. But if he's at any risk of further damage, the call should be for him to sit.

What happens going forward, if the Heels get by the Bobcats, remains to be seen. It's hard to see the Heels winning it all without Marshall.

 

Brawlers Still Alive

One of the ugliest moments of the college basketball season occurred when Cincinnati and Xavier brawled. Oddly enough, the game/brawl took place on the same day Indiana's Watford nailed the three to defeat Kentucky.

Talk about the best of times and the worst of times.

A local bragging rights clash got way out of hand, players were bloodied and reputations were damaged. Yet, both of these teams have rebounded, and they find themselves in the Sweet 16.

Cincinnati did fall to the Buckeyes last night, but their resurgence is noteworthy.

Xavier draws No. 3 seed Baylor. 

A possible meeting could have happened, only in the national championship. Though that was most unlikely, it's great to see these kids and programs rebound from an ugly incident.

They have placed themselves and their programs in the spotlight for something positive this time around.

On December 10, I don't think anyone would have guessed either school would have made it this far.

 

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