Second Thoughts: Flyers reach fork in road to NCAA tourney

March Madness has arrived. It’s all conference basketball tournaments and dodging snow plows. I made a quick trip to Arizona last week to visit my parents and check out the Reds. I’m here to tell you there really are parts of our fine country where the sun shines and winter coats are not required. Hang tough, readers. Spring will be here soon. Maybe.

Can you see six teams from the Atlantic 10 getting invites to the NCAA tournament? I can’t, which means UD’s chances of making the cut are about as good as Caddyshack winning the Oscar for Best Picture. The Flyers, who got a clutch win Saturday against UMass, need to finish the regular season with a win at Saint Louis and a knockout of Richmond at home.

That would put UD at 22-9 heading into the A-10 tourney. Possible, I guess, but the Flyers have been too inconsistent to expect such heroics. But just maybe they sneak in and Xavier slips a little and UD and X meet in the First Four. That would be fun.

My kids will cheer a little harder for Reds outfielder Chris Heisey this season. Heisey was awesome when it came to signing autographs and interacting with fans when we visited spring training in Goodyear, Ariz. Brandon Phillips was another good guy to approach.

My son managed to run down Billy Hamilton for a signature, which should be disturbing if you’re a Reds fan. Jake is not the fastest kid around. Others who got rave reviews: Todd Frazier, Corky Miller and Tom Browning.

Great job by Wright State to lock up the No. 3 seed in the Horizon Leaugue tournament. WSU takes a four-game winning streak to Green Bay. This could be a free-for-all. The Horizon has had seven different tourney champions in the past 10 years.

Congrats to Wichita State for going 31-0 in the regular season. I hope the Shockers shut up their critics by going back to the Final Four. I also hope they get another mascot. That yellow Frankenstein thing is really creepy.

Trending up: Dale Earnhardt, Independence Bowl, Buck Showalter. I wouldn’t be surprised if NASCAR switched the Daytona 500 to a night race after last Sunday’s exciting finish after sundown. Earnhardt won a race that saw plenty of intense racing, maybe because the drivers worried that one last shot of rain would end the race.

Trending down: Ray Small, Raymond Felton. Piers Morgan. College athletes who work hard have advantages regular students do not have. Doors open for them; they can network with boosters who might be future employers. Small, a former Ohio State Buckeye football player, didn’t get that. He’s facing prison time after pleading guilty to felony drug trafficking. Stupid.

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