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Let's Go ...

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Almost 13 hours to go. I am going to start this game day post pretty much the same way I have been starting the whole season - by going to Brian Dohn. Dohn as usual has a great game day report up. Here is Dohn on one of rules Coach Howland has instituted to minimize game day distractions - NO TV for the Bruins:

Bank on that television being off even when Bradley and Memphis battle in the first regional semifinal today. No watching television before games is a rule instituted by UCLA coach Ben Howland, and it's one senior wing Cedric Bozeman wholeheartedly endorses because of past experience.

"My freshman year I think we lost a little focus early," said Bozeman, a freshman on UCLA's 2002 Sweet 16 squad. "We had a TV on in the locker room, and we saw Duke go down, and we thought, 'Oh, man, this could be our chance to take it.' "

No. 2 seed UCLA hasn't reached the Elite Eight in nine years, getting blown out by an average of 18 points in their last four Sweet 16 games. Bruins coach Ben Howland has rebuilt his third program, but is looking for his first Elite Eight appearance after dropping Sweet 16 games in 2002 and 2003 while at Pittsburgh.

And minimizing distractions is a crucial part to a team keeping its focus, and something the Bruins have tried to do entering tonight's Sweet 16 showdown with No. 3 seed Gonzaga at Oakland Arena.
I sure hope these guys are not getting  any TV till this Saturday night. Elsewhere Morrison based articles are everywhere. Here is another article about Morrison from Steve Dilbeck of the Daily News, and here is Steve Springer from the Times talking about how the Bruins are going to stop Morrison and his sidekicks (who are apparently pretty damn good). Yeap ... it sure seems like spotlight today is going to be on the Zags. As I wrote earlier this week the pressure is going to be on the Zags tonight (and looky here Plashcke agrees - he must be reading BN - but whatever he is still not welcome on the Bruin bandwagon. It's a little late for BP to join our party).

Make no mistake here. This is a bigger game for the Zags than it is for us. CBS's Dennis Dodd agrees with our narrative saying Zags Cinderalla Act is getting a bit stale:
There is a tipping point when the meter runs out on the whole Cinderella thing.

What was once inspirational is now underachieving if Gonzaga doesn't get to the Final Four. At least. It hasn't been to the Sweet 16 in five years. It's been seven years since the miracle run to the Elite Eight in 1999.


[W]hile a loss to second-seeded UCLA wouldn't be a disgrace, it would be a huge setback in Zagland.
Yeap, those guys have a lot to lose. As for us? No pressure. Sure this is the first time we have been back in Steve-16 since 02. But so what. We are going to come back again and come back with a better team. This team has already exceeded all of our expectations and at this point we have nothing to lose. While on the other side this is it for the Zags - it's unclear given UCLA's reemergence as an elite national player they are going to get their dibs on elite players like Morrison any more. So the pressure is on Few and co. to finally cash (which means at least a Final-4) after being ESPN's little darlings for so long. They have to win.

Now that is out of the way. I want this game. I want it bad.

All we have to do is come out play strong, fundamental, inside-the-jersey defense we have been playing this whole season - specially the last few weeks, and everything is going to turn out all right. We are going to be all right because we have karma on our side. We have had it on our side the whole season:

AP Photo

Again good luck to all of you trying to get something done at work the whole day. Here are more gameday stories courtesy of BBR. One thing you can do is post in this thread where all of you (especially those who are not lucky enough to be in Oakland) are watching the game today? If you are living out in the East Coast or Midwest or Southwest or Northwest - wherever - tell us where are you going to be watching the games with the local alumni clubs or with friends. Like I said above this is going to be our party. Let's GO. GO BRUINS.