March Madness Odds

For the Record: Columnist Greg Cote mischaracterizes process

While the NCAA enforcement staff gathers the facts of a case, the Committee on Infractions is a separate and independent group that determines what violations may have occurred and any appropriate penalties. To inform its final decision, the Committee uses information not only provided to them by the enforcement staff, but also the involved school and individuals. The Committee on Infractions is comprised of diverse individuals from the NCAA membership and general public.

When NCAA member schools created the rules that govern the infractions process, they intentionally divided the fact-finding process from that which decides the outcome of the case.

In direct contradiction to Cotes assertions, this check and balance exists to provide a fair, neutral process for any school or individual involved in the infractions process.

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No. 6 Xavier Musketeers vs. No. 2 Kansas State Wildcats

Xavier Musketeers versus Kansas State Wildcats will start at 9:37 PM ET, Thursday, March 25, 2010.

Xavier Musketeers

Even though the Xavier Musketeers are a mid major school they don’t play like it. They have been to the Sweet 16 in 4 out of the last 7 tournaments and even the Elite 8 twice since 2004. Jordan Crawford leads this group of Musketeers basketball after coming to national and maybe worldwide fame when a camera phone video captured him dunking on LeBron James, which

Kansas State Wildcats

Head Coach Frank Martin has the Kansas St. Wildcats playing at an extremely high level, particularly on the offensive side of the floor, where Kansas St. seems to score at will. Martin has helped keep the program in the national spotlight despite the loss of such high-profile players as Michael Beasley and Bill Walker.  The Wildcats are doing it with outstanding guard play as Jacob Pullen and Denis Clemente continue to pace Martin's squad on both ends of the floor. Pullen not only put up a career high 34 points in the team's second round win over BYU, he helped frustrate Cougars star Jimmer Fredette, who scored 21 points but hit just 5 of 13 field goals.

The Kansas State Wildcats averaged 79.8 points per game and shot 45 percent from the floor, they were also 24th in offensive rebounding in the nation. On defense Kansas State only allowed teams to put up 69.3 points per game against them and shoot only 41.7 percent from the floor. Kansas State played the 2nd toughest schedule over the course of the season but at this point they are one of just two Big 12 teams that are still in the tourney. This is a veteran team that knows how to get things done.

Xavier is 4 and 1 against the spread in their last 5 nonconference games, 9 and 1 against the spread in their last 10 NCAA Tournament matches as an underdog and finally 5 and 2 against the spread in their last 7 games against the Big 12. Kansas State is 8 and 0 against the spread in their last 8 nonconference games, 6 and 1 against the spread in their last 7 neutral site games, and 16 and 4 with one tie against the spread in their last 21 games as the favorites to win.

I like the scrappy Musketeers and I think they match up well against the Wildcats. I wouldn’t be surprised if this game was decided on a buzzer beater or went into overtime, with that said Xavier Musketeers +4.5 would be my bet and I found that line at