Things That Caught My Eye
Guard Arike Ogunbowale nailed a perfect jump shot to put the Irish up over Mississippi State 61-58 and eventually handing Notre Dame its second NCAA women’s title. The game was a massive comeback; Notre Dame trailed 40-25 in the third quarter, and the comeback is the largest in the final since the founding of the women’s tournament in 1982. [The New York Times]
In order to even make it to that final, though, Notre Dame had to defeat women’s basketball juggernaut Connecticut. The Irish ended UConn’s unbeaten season with a 91-89 victory in the Final Four. This was the third time Notre Dame beat UConn in the semifinals of the tournament since 2011, but the first time they were able to actually capitalize on that defeat of UConn and win the tournament. [ESPN]
Try out our interactive, Which World Cup Team Should You Root For?
Baseball kicked off last week, and we have an early look at who’s favored to win the World Series this year. FiveThirtyEight gives the Astros and Indians each a 14 percent chance of winning the World Series, with the Dodgers (12 percent) and Yankees (9 percent) also in the hunt. [FiveThirtyEight]
Tonight will see the end of March Madness, with the Michigan Wolverines facing off against the Villanova Wildcats. Villanova is the favorite, with a 64 percent chance of winning the title. [FiveThirtyEight]
Two Australian players are facing severe penalties after they admitted to tampering with the cricket balls in a match against South Africa. The scandal is also raising questions about how widespread the practice actually may be across the sport. [Deadspin]
The U.S., which saw its men’s national team miss its shot to go to the World Cup this summer, will not be totally unrepresented at the event. We will in fact send two referees, Jair Marrufo and Mark Geiger. [Kevin McCauley]
A Chicago-area accountant was called up as an emergency backup goalie at a Blackhawks game. Last Thursday, not only was Scott Foster called up to serve as the emergency backup, he even got on the ice. The former college player had seven saves in the third period and preserved Chicago’s 6-2 lead over Winnipeg. [Digg]
Leaks from Slack
We have our winners of the FiveThirtyEight Bracket!
– @neil won the women’s bracket
– @sara.ziegler will inevitably win the men’s bracket; She picked Nova to win and has the top score now, and nobody picked a Michigan win.
– @neil won the combined bracket!!!!
This means 25% of the pot goes to Sara and 75% of the pot goes to our champion Neil.
-The chalk bracket ranked seventh among the FiveThirtyEight Staff.
-Only three people got more points on the men’s bracket than women’s
-There were three Women’s games where nobody correctly picked the outcome. There were 7 (or 8, if UM wins) such men’s games.
-The most valuable single pick was Neil taking Louisville to make the final four, which got him 100 points.
-This office predicted a collective 48 victories for the University of Virginia in this tournament, an average of 3.2 per bracket. There were, in fact, zero.