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UCF’s Run Ends At The Final Four

OK, maybe not the Final Four, but at a college basketball postseason tournament with four teams remaining. Close enough.

The Knights lost to Creighton, 82-64, in the semifinal round of the College Basketball Invitational on Wednesday night. It took 40 minutes to become official, but this contest should have been stopped after a few possessions.

I was not expecting much from my alma mater coming into this tournament, but after tuning in to see the Knights defeat St. Bonaventure and Rhode Island in the first two rounds, I was actually looking forward to this game.

That anticipation was squashed quickly.

The Bluejays made their first two shots — both 3-pointers. Right then, you could have called this one-sided battle. The Knights never got closer to the lead than those six points and spent most of the night in an embarrassing mess. UCF committed 13 turnovers and trailed by 21 points by the end of the first half. I watched that entire half; it was more than enough.

If I had stuck around, I could have watched them fall behind by 30. Oh, shucks.

But hey, there’s always a silver lining. The Knights’ 21 wins were their most since the 2006-2007 season (of course, they started 14-0 this year, but, you know, whatever). Their top four scorers will return this fall and they are adding an ESPNU top-100 recruit, one of only two such newcomers to Conference USA. And if you’re a believer in flimsy trends with a very limited track record, check this out. Ten NCAA Tournament teams from the past two seasons participated in the CBI the year before. So you know it must be a fool-proof statistic.

Take note mediocre college basketball teams: The best way to take part in March Madness isn’t to build a strong non-conference schedule or succeed in league play; just accept an invite to the CBI and you’ll give yourself an automatic 30 percent chance in the following year. Not a bad deal, eh?

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