George Mason was known as the father of the Bill of Rights. Ironic, then, that his namesake, George Mason University, pulled off the mother of all upsets in the NCAA Tournament Sunday.

George Mason 86, UConn 84.

Are you kidding?

Do you even know what conference George Mason is hails from?

The Colonial, in case you give up.

With its stunning upset over UConn, George Mason — the Patriots, of course — has now eliminated half of last year’s Final Four. With wins over Connecticut and North Carolina, George Mason has now beaten the last two national champions.

Nobody saw that coming.

Well, nearly nobody.

Four people of the 3 million that played the ESPN NCAA tournament racket got this year’s final four correct. Four out of three million.

That’s some odds.

Just how big was GMU’s win Sunday?

Consider, it’s been 20 years since an 11th seed has advanced to the Final Four.

In my lifetime, I can only think of three events that are even in the same hemisphere with George Mason beating UConn.

That would be the Miracle on Ice when the USA beat the Soviet Union in hockey in the 1980 Olympics; Charminade beating Virginia in the Maui Classic in 1980; and Buster Douglas knocking out Mike Tyson.

Ironically, GMU coach Jim Larranaga was an assistant to Terry Holland at Virginia when the Cavs were upended by Charminade.

Nobody gave George Mason a chance. CBS’ Billy Packer went so far as to say it on Selection Sunday.

George Mason showed us again why college basketball is still the best game in town.


Speaking of college hoops, Mountain State will have to do some heavy-duty recruiting if it wants to make a ninth straight appearance in the NAIA national tournament next March.

The Cougars lose nine seniors.

Mersad Terzic played in two national title games, winning one. He also played in the Elite Eight three times and the Sweet 16 four times.

Maurice Davis earned a reputation as a top defender, Dajuan Tate would have been a player of the year candidate if not for an injury and Brian Jackson was underrated as a point guard.

The Cougars will replace the scoring.

But can they replace the defense?

While they get a lot of notice for a high-scoring offense, it’s the defense that separated this MSU team.

You need Basketball for Dummies if you can’t see that.

MSU led the nation in field goal percentage defense (.362) and defensive rebounds (32.4 per game).

Look at the job the Cougars did on former Mountaineer Brad Byerson back in November. They held the Virginia Union forward to four points in a win over the then-defending NCAA Division II champions.

On Saturday, Byerson had 22 in Virginia Union’s loss to Winona State in the Division II title game.

If you think MSU can’t play defense, get in line behind the Scarecrow.


The million dollar question is, will John Beilein leave his post as basketball coach at WVU?

The Missouri job was filled. One down, several more storms to weather.

The most dangerous may be in Indiana, where Beilein’s name is gaining steam.

See what happens when you’re successful?

— E-mail: demorrison@

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