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ESPN's Mark Dixon talks tournament field

Besides talking about the possibility of Loyola and/or Maryland not making the 16-team field of the NCAA tournament, ESPN analyst and former Johns Hopkins midfielder Mark Dixon offered his take on which school deserves the No. 1 seed. (Hint: the program rhymes with Hera-deuce.)

"If Syracuse beats Colgate on Saturday, I think Syracuse goes to No. 1," Dixon said. "A lot of people are projecting Duke to be No. 1 because their RPI shot up from a seven to a two in the latest rankings and that’s powered by those two wins over Virginia. But I could see Duke going in at two. So I think right now, it’s between Syracuse and Duke. I don’t think you can give Virginia the [No.] 1 [seed] simply because of the losses to Duke."

Dixon laughed when he was asked to name his Final Four and pretended to hesitate. But he answered the call and answered the question.

"I think Virginia can make it with the offense that they have," Dixon said. "They’ve got to get things right on the defensive end. They are just porous right now off-ball, and they’ve been exposed by Duke. They were exposed by Hopkins actually. They lived dangerously there, and they lived dangerously against Carolina, but I do think Virginia still has the offensive firepower to get there. I would bet on Syracuse. I would bet on North Carolina. I think Carolina is starting to get it together, even with the loss to Duke. I like what I see out of Carolina. And I think Princeton can get it together. They’ve got that nice blend of youth and senior leadership. They have a stingy defense, and the offense is playing pretty well, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see Princeton there. So I would say Princeton, Syracuse and Virginia with the dark horse being Carolina."

Posted by Edward Lee at 3:25 PM | | Comments (2)


Of all the moves that Debbie Yow's made while AD at Maryland (90+% great), hiring Cottle over Gary Gait will be ranked there as her biggest mistake!

Re: Cottle hiring
In defence of Cottle / Haus as coach. The ACC has to be the biggest pressure cooker going in College lax.
The pairings there can make a good coach look medicore and a capable coach appear substandard. Can changing a coach turns things around, sure but it usually isn't an overnight affair. The ACC will send 3 to the dance and most likely a fourth.
That is quality in spades. Both Cottle and Haus deserve some respect.

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Faceoff is The Baltimore Sun's blog devoted to college and high school lacrosse. Faceoff contributors include Sun reporters Edward Lee, Mike Preston and Katherine Dunn.

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