The K-State Sports Bracket enters the regional semifinals today. With the bracket winding down, we'll start consolidating regions into combined posts. Today, you get both basketball and football action. If you haven't already, be sure to check in on round 2 of the Non-revenue and Miscellaneous Regions.
Last round saw a lot of tight races, and one or two of the results may surprise you. In the end, the top four seeds are still alive in the Basketball Region, while a few lower seeds were able to break through in the Football Region. Let's break it down.
(1) Ernie Barrett vs. (4) Lon Kruger
Barrett was locked in a tight second-round match with Jack Hartman, but Mr. K-State ultimately took the round with 57% of the vote. Kruger's match with Bob Boozer was even closer. Only three total votes separated the two; 78 for Kruger to 75 for Boozer. In terms percentages, that's slightly under 51% for the victor. We're left with a matchup of two great players who held high-profile positions in the program later in life (Kruger as head coach, Barrett as AD).
(2) Tex Winter vs. (3) Mitch Richmond
Winter made easy work of Mike Evans in the last round, collecting 88% of the fan ballots. Richmond emerged victorious after taking 54% of the vote from Rolando Blackman. The resulting matchup pits two men who have made their marks on KSU, as well as the NBA and basketball at large. Both men are enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. To me, this one could go either way.
(1) Bill Snyder I (1989-2005) vs. (5) Tyler Lockett
Snyder I's second round contest was no contest, the voting analogue of last night's West Virginia - Kentucky game. Snyder took over 98% of the vote against Mark Simoneau. The only question: Who were the three people that voted against the silver-haired one, and what were they on when they did?
Lockett won a close-but-comfortable second round affair against Terence Newman, taking 59% of the vote. But as great as Tyler is, it's hard seeing him doing any better than Simoneau against the savior of K-State football.
(3) Michael Bishop vs. (7) Darren Sproles
In THE matchup of the bracket so far, Bishop won an ultra-tight battle with Collin Klein to take the title as K-State fans' favorite quarterback. The race was neck and neck from the moment the poll was posted. Had I written this post yesterday, Klein may have been the winner. In the end, the vote tally was 102-98 in favor of the Heisman Trophy runner-up.
On the other side of the bracket, Sproles pulled the upset over second-tenure Bill Snyder, snagging an impressive 65% of the vote. We probably should have seen this coming, given Snyder's struggles with Martin Gramatica in the first round. The result is a matchup of the two most dynamic playmakers to ever don the Powercat helmet. I, for one, can't wait to see how this plays out.
It's time to make your voice heard. Vote responsibly.