by John Walters
Designated Survivor: Everyone except Mike Zacher (“Vanderbilt”) and unofficial player and MH’s No. 1 Unknown Fan, Susie B., (“Md”) survives and advances. My pick for today: UCLA.
Northwestern Wins Yada Yada Yada
The Wildcats never played an NCAA tournament game before yesterday and now have the all-time best winning percentage in tournament history (1-0, 100%) after defeating fellow Dean’s List school Vanderbilt, 68-66.
Thursday’s only memorable game saw the Commodores take a 66-65 lead with under :20 to play only to have guard Matthew Fisher-Davis grab and foul Northwestern’s best free throw shooter, Bryant McIntosh, who drained the winning foul shots. Fisher-Davis was Vandy’s leading scorer with 22 points, but that’s not what anyone will remember.
Other than that and Princeton missing a potential game-winning three against Notre Dame, Thursday was rather mundane. Fourteen of 16 higher seeded teams won, and the two “upsets,” Middle Tennessee State over No. 5 Minnesota, and Xavier over No. 6 Maryland, hardly seemed it.
There were no buzzer beaters. It should heat up today.
2. March Madness
The Sean Spicer Show was Extra Spicey on Thursday. You can pretty much skip ahead to the 10:00 mark.
How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 4, 2017
Meanwhile, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Attorney General Jeff Sessions (all Republicans) have denied that at present there is any evidence to support Trump’s claim. His claim has been roundly debunked. Absolutely no bunk.
3. Live To The Entire Country, It’s Saturday Night
Beginning April 15 and for its final four episodes of its 42nd season, Saturday Night Live will air live coast-to-coast. In other words, it will be impervious to Twitter. When Melissa McCarthy hosts on May 13 and revives her Sean Spicer impersonation, you’ll be seeing it live in New York at 11:30 p.m. and live in Gordo, Alabama, at 10:30 p.m. and live in Glendale, Montana, at 9:30 p.m., and live in Coos Bay, Oregon, at 8:30 p.m.
There’s one more SNL that will be done the usual way (April 8, with host Louis C.K.) and then the final four with hosts Jimmy Fallon (April 15), Chris Pine (May 6), McCarthy and The Rock (May 20) will be done live coast-to-coast.
4. What Part of volcaNO Don’t You Understand?
You say “volcanic eruption.” I prefer LAVALANCHE.
A BBC crew and some tourists were a little too close to the mouth of Mount Etna’s volcano when it blew yesterday in Sicily. Nobody got injured but we did get to say, “Magma” as if we were Dr. Evil, so that was worth it.
p.s. I’ve know a few volcanic Sicilians who could really spout off in my life. This was nothing.
5. Fizz Ed
Pouring one out for Ed Whitlock, the Canadian distance runner who waited until his eighth decade to become a true marathon legend. Whitlock, who died last weekend at the age of 86, ran a sub-three hour marathon (2:54) when he was 73 and a sub-four hour marathon (3:15) in his eighties and those are world records for that age group, literally and figuratively by a mile. So, as Outside suggests, maybe those are the greatest running achievements of all time.
Whitlock was a serious running in college in England where he was born and raised, then moved to Canada and did not take up running again until his 40s. Just last October 16 he ran a 3:56 marathon at the age of 85. I plan on running a marathon later this year and, though 35 years younger, I’ve got fingers crossed that I’ll beat that time.
Farewell, Ed. You’ve finished the greatest race of them all.
American History 101
“We were the wretched refuse on the teeming shore,” Irish prime minister says with Donald Trump in the room. pic.twitter.com/7jEfTVvIzE
— Barry Malone (@malonebarry) March 17, 2017
Anyone else notice how many prime ministers understand American far better than the current administration does?
For St. Patrick’s Day, here’s the moment from the Dublin-based 2016 film Sing Street where you realize this movie is going to stick with you. I’m still annoyed that no tunes from this film—written and directed by John Carney, who also did Once—were nominated for Best Song at the Oscars. I can’t embed the scene in the film that corresponds to the song, but here is the link.
March Madness, Day 2
Noon CBS, TBS, TNT, TruTV
Best bets: Michigan-Oklahoma State (12:15, CBS), USC-SMU, (3:10, Tru), Rhode Island-Creighton (4:30 TBS) and Wichita State-Dayton (7:10 p.m., CBS)
The Quiet Man
9:30 p.m. TCM
Because John Wayne dragging Maureen O’Hara halfway across Inisfree is as much a St. Paddy’s Day tradition as are car bombs.