It’s beginning to feel a lot like March as smaller conference teams snatch up automatic bids to the NCAA Tournament. A strong argument could be made that this is the very best time of year. But it is also not without its share of heartache — both for the players who have their dreams of dancing go up in smoke and the poor gamblers who take shots on some relatively unknown entities.
There were two terrifically bad beats last night.
First, there was Iona. The Gaels outlasted Siena in overtime to win the MAAC title. They did not, however, cover the 3-point spread as Marquis Wright of the Saints hit buzzer-beating three to cement a 87-86 final.
Iona getting backdoored is fairly palatable compared to what happened to Central Michigan. The Chippewas, a 10-point underdog, jumped out to an early lead against Kent State in the MAC Tournament and enjoyed a 13-point cushion at halftime. The Golden Flashes fought back in the second half and forced overtime, then ripped off 25 points in the extra frame for a 116-106 victory (and push).
Considering how fickle a scoreboard can be, it’s a good thing sports gambling is only legal in Vegas. Imagine if people all over the country were doing it. There’d be a lot of disappointed souls this morning. Again, good thing no one is doing it outside of Vegas.