It’s been a long time, but the end of the month calls for a round of sports news and views...
News -- Kansas’ Cole Aldrich declares for the NBA draft.
Views -- The announcement verified what everybody already knew. Aldrich had put in his three years and it was time for him to move on. He didn’t really have the season we thought he would, but was an intimidating presence in the middle. Offensively, he still has a long way to go. In the NBA, he’s probably going to be a role player who will fill in for about 10 or 15 minutes a game and should have a 10-year career.
News -- The Final Four includes Duke, West Virginia, Butler and Michigan State.
Views -- How many of you had those teams in your Final Four? Probably not many, if any. We picked Duke to win it all at the start of the tournament and it’s our only team left. We have to like its chances, because it’s one of the basketball bluebloods and Coach K is a master this time of the season.
News -- Tom Izzo has Michigan State in the Final Four for the sixth time in 12 years.
Views -- When is Izzo going to get his due? Six Final Fours in 12 years? Are you kidding? And he does it without the presence of a parade of McDonald’s All-Americans. It starts with rebounding and defense, and he gets kids to buy into his system. We wouldn’t put it past the Spartans to win it all, even if they’re not the most talented team left.
News -- Butler becomes the first “mid major” to make the Final Four since George Mason.
Views -- Maybe now the NCAA committee will give the lesser-known teams a higher seed. Butler is a No. 5, though its record should have put it higher. The Bulldogs are all about defense and fundamental basketball and we’d like to see them win it all.
News -- Kansas State’s loss to Butler ends its season.
Views -- The Wildcats are back. Kansas Jayhawk fans had better learn to live with it, as Frank Martin is sculpting a powerhouse in Manhattan.
News -- The baseball season gets under way in just a few days.
Views -- With the Final Four going on, baseball kind of gets shoved to the backburner. Be watching for our predictions.
News -- All the attention at The Masters next week figures to center on Tiger Woods, who makes his return to the tour after a public scandal.
Views -- As far as we’re concerned, leave Tiger alone. His business is his business. Why does everybody have to be a Nosy Nate? He doesn’t have an obligation to talk about his dirty laundry. He made some mistakes. He’s human. So enough of it already.