Madness

March 30, 2000

THIS WEEKEND in Indianapolis, three underdogs and highly-rated Michigan State will play for the Division I college basketball national championship -- and who would be bold enough to pick a winner?

Michigan State is strong, but had difficulties in earlier rounds. The University of Florida achieved impressive upsets, but plays a lot of youngsters. Few thought Wisconsin would escape the first round.

And North Carolina? Many thought the Tar Heels didn't belong in the tournament. Butthey are finally "learning how to win," says their floor leader, Ed Cota.

We love to see the unexpected, the triumph of the underachievers. It's all there every year in one form or another.

Some things, including the propensity for big-time athletes to find trouble, don't change, unfortunately. Mr. Cota and one of his teammates face a trial for their part in a brawl -- a court appearance that has been, once again, postponed.

Basketball over all. This year you could almost buy it.

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