It wouldn't be the week before a Final 8 if we didn't quibble with the first-round matchups.
Neate has already mentioned today's release of the seedings for the women's Final 8. And there's something that might need a fix, from the fans' point of view.
Last year, it was the Carleton/Western/Ottawa side of the bracket that got us all hot and bothered. This time, it's another OUA set of No. 2 Windsor and No. 7 Ottawa, who will face off, again, less than a week after the Lancers won the OUA title 83-55 over the Gee-Gees. That's not at all redundant, is it?
Now, it's not that bad (there are 40,320 ways to arrange this bracket, and this way is better than maybe 40,313 of them), but there's a simple fix. Flipping Windsor and Regina isn't difficult, and it would result in the following:
SFU vs. McMaster / Regina vs. Laval
Windsor vs. Cape Breton / Saskatchewan vs. Ottawa
Under this change, there is the issue of Windsor (2nd in RPI) having to play CBU (3rd in RPI) even though that may be unfair to the OUA champion. But in the setup we have now, the Capers (another conference champion, remember) have to play the Huskies, who are pretty good themselves. Either way, you'll have two good teams play each other on Friday, which is more desirable than repeating a playoff game.
Even Mac at 7 and Ottawa U at 8 wouldn't be so bad. But then again, you'd have to get the team that was 3-1 in the playoffs to accept being seeded below the team that went one-and-done. Not to mention we'd have another Ottawa-SFU matchup, after last year's blowout excited tens of fans.
Anyway, one trusts that the coaches (one from each conference, natch) who made this decision had their reasons, and did so without resorting to petty regionalism. Who knows, perhaps their alternative was something else that would have people like me railing against it just as much.
We'll be all over the women's Final 8 just like we will be for the men's draw next weekend, so be sure to hang around for our excellent coverage of the tournament, including live coverage of all championship-side games, our occasionally-correct insight, and Westdale-area restaurant reviews. We'll be joined courtside by The Sil's Brian Decker, who'll keep you company while some of us deal with pesky afternoon classes in another city.