Cinderella vs. Cinderella, women's Elite Eight, marathon baseball
Virginia Commonwealth coach Shaka Smart celebrates after his team knocked off the No. 1-seeded Kansas Jayhawks.
March 28th, 2011
12:52 PM ET Cinderella vs. Cinderella, women's Elite Eight, marathon baseball

With every No. 1 and No. 2 seed knocked out of this year’s NCAA college basketball tournament, it’ll be Cinderella battling Cinderella next weekend in the Final Four.

It’s safe to say that few, if any, saw this coming. This year’s season was marked by the fact that there was not the traditional powerhouse that all other teams were chasing. This year’s tournament was arguably one of the more wide open in recent memory.

But this wide open?

VCU and Butler facing off for a spot in the championship? As’s Michael Rosenberg says, the impossible happened twice when these two teams fought their way to a shot at winning the tournament.

“Until the last week before the regular season, nobody knew if Butler and VCU would even make the tournament,” Rosenberg writes. “Butler had to win its conference tournament to ensure a bid. VCU had to wait until the selection committee made ESPN analysts throw up. And now here they are. Duke is gone. Ohio State is gone. Every No. 1 and 2 seed is gone. And Butler and VCU are still standing, ready to meet in the Final Four.”

But despite the sheer entertainment value of two long shots making storybook runs in the tournament, Rosenberg raises the question of whether a system in which the best teams don’t always make it to the championship is what fans really want. In short, the answer is a resounding yes.

“This isn't the situation in Libya or your uncle's heart surgery. We're not all that concerned about right and wrong or the perfect outcome,” Rosenberg writes. “We want to be entertained. The NCAA tournament is not about rewarding the best team in the country. It's about rewarding the best team in the tournament. And I suspect most of us prefer it that way.”

While fans will have to wait until this weekend to find out which Cinderella will advance to take on either UConn or Kentucky for the title, they can indulge in some women’s tourney action tonight:

Tennessee vs. Notre Dame (7 ET)
Gonzaga vs. Stanford (9 ET)

By the numbers

11,500,000 – Dollars owed by the Cubs on Carlos Silva’s salary. The veteran pitcher was released by Chicago one day after being told he would not make the opening-day roster.

94 – Number of points scored by Miami’s LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in the Heat’s 125-119 win against the Rockets.

22 – Number of innings it took in Fresno State’s 3-2 victory over San Diego. Clocking in at over seven hours, the matchup marked the third-longest college baseball game in NCAA Division I history.

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Filed under: Baseball • Basketball • California • College basketball • Florida • Indiana • LeBron James • NBA • Sports • U.S. • Virginia
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. banasy

    I like baseball and all, but 22 innings? *Yawn*! I couldn't sit through 22 innings of my beloved White Sox!! Unless they were playing the Cubs, that is. 😉

    March 28, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Herbert

    That was a looooong game, seven hours too.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Pictures Dont Lie !! But Your Ugly Face Does !!!

    Get it got it good now have a s++ty day blogers and if i were any of u i wouldnt ever look in the mirror unless u have a cast iron stomach ; just sayen

    March 28, 2011 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Col. Bat Guano

    Why was Lebron James tagged on this. He's one of the worst basketball players I have ever seen in my entire life.

    March 28, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
  5. 2pac

    Id smash all dz chiks

    March 28, 2011 at 11:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. lonesome

    2pac wake up wake up. And express a opinon. I'm lonely.

    March 29, 2011 at 4:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. Lenny

    I love baseball

    March 30, 2011 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |