West Coast be ballin'

The first two rounds of the men's national college basketball tournament are now in the books. A surprising number of the favored teams have been sent home from the Indianapolis "bubble" in which all of the games are being played.

Beyond the very top teams, the folks who seeded this tournament got it mostly wrong. Of the 16 schools remaining in the competition, ony seven are from the top 4 seeds. In theory, those top seeds would now make up the entire remaining field of 16. But many lowlier teams advanced instead. Remaining alive are two 5's, a 6, a 7, an 8, two 11's, a 12, and even a 15. Amazing.

Four of the five participants from the Pac-12 Conference are stll standing: Oregon, Oregon State, USC, and UCLA. UCLA had to win a play-in round, and so they're actually 3-0 at this point. The list of teams who have fallen to the Pac-12 so far includes some impressive names: Michigan State, Iowa, Kansas, Ohlahoma State, Tennessee, BYU... all got their walking papers at the hands of the "Conference of Champions." Colorado won a round, then bowed out to Florida State, a 4-seed.

It will get no easier for the Pac-12 this weekend. Oregon and USC will play each other next, and one will knock the other out. UCLA faces the Crimson Tide of Alabam, which is a tall order. But Oregon State plays the upsetters of Loyola Chicago, which could be do-able for the Corvallis Cinderellas.

There will be at least one and as many as three Pac-12 squads in the Elite Eight. In theory, you could have three Pac-12 teams in the Final Four. I'm so bad at predictions, and such a jinx, that I will leave it at that.

On to the women, who are still in the early stages of their tourney in San Antonio. I count five Pac-12 teams who made it through their first rounds: Ducks, Beavers, Stanford, UCLA, and Arizona. They all stomped on their first opponents. Washington State, however, lost to South Florida.

Oregon State has to deal with No. 1 seed South Carolina today, while No. 1 seed Stanford grapples wth Oklahoma State. The other three Pac-12 women's teams play again tomorrow.