NCAA Tournament predictions: The entertainment hodgepodge edition

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March Madness. It’s Christmas in the spring. Here are my opening-round picks (winners in all caps), brought to you by a hodgepodge of music, movie and TV clips …

EAST REGION

NO.1 OHIO STATE vs. No. 16 Texas-Antonio: Country star Dwight Yoakam attended OSU and covered Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire,” which is what the Roadrunners are falling into …

NO. 8 GEORGE MASON vs. No. 9 Villanova: Royals GM Dayton Moore is a Patriot, so we go with his alma mater (Enjoy the Mad Jack Harry clip. Dude is like the old guy off “Network) …

NO. 5 WEST VIRGINIA vs. No. 12 Clemson: Antoine Fuqua attended WVU before he directed “Training Day.” Clemson’s day will end like this …

NO. 4 KENTUCKY vs. No. 13 Princeton: Kentucky grad Harry Dean Stanton, now starring on “Big Love,” was Molly Ringwold’s old man in “Pretty in Pink.” Princeton winds up like James Spader …

NO. 6 XAVIER vs. No. 11 Marquette: Like alum Robert Romanus, who played Mike Damone in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” the Muskateers have a five-point plan …

NO. 3 SYRACUSE vs. No. 14 Indiana State: Unless Larry Bird is in the lineup, the Sycamores have no shot, even if Syracuse alum Peter Falk starts …

NO. 7 WASHINGTON vs. No. 10 Georgia: I’m still not sure if “Lump” by The Presidents of the United States of America is a good or bad thing. If it’s bad, Georgia will be lump. Oh, and the band’s bassist, Dave Dederer, attended graduate school at UW …

NO. 2 NORTH CAROLINA vs. No. 15 Long Island: The Tar Heels, like former UNC student Jack Palance, advance because they “crap bigger” than the Blackbirds …

WEST REGION

NO. 1 DUKE vs. No. 16 Hampton: Randall Wallace went to Duke. He also wrote “Braveheart.” With the exception of the ending, the Blue Devils are William Wallace in this mismatch …

No. 8 Michigan vs. NO. 9 TENNESSEE: Volunteer David Keith, whose big break came in “Office and a gentleman,” also had a great role in “Major League II.” Michigan figures to be Rick Vaughn from this scene …

NO. 5 ARIZONA vs. No. 12 Memphis: Anybody who says the NCAA Tournament committee doesn’t like its quirky storylines is fooling themselves. Josh Pastner, the former Wildcat, now the Tigers’ coach. Not an accident. As for the game, compared to Arizona, Memphis (Linda Ronstadt attended Arizona) …

NO. 4 TEXAS vs. No. 13 Oakland: A lot of folks like the Grizzlies here. I’m not one of them. The Longhorns, like UT grad Matthew McConaughey as Wooderson, are just too cool for Oakland …

No. 6 Cincinnati vs. NO. 11 MISSOURI: Sheryl Crow? Brad Pitt? No thanks, we’ll go with MU alum George C. Scott as “Patton” ….

NO. 3 CONNECTICUT vs. No. 14 Bucknell: Former Huskie Tony Todd played the title role in the horror film “Candyman.” UConn will torture the Bison similarly here …

NO. 7 TEMPLE vs. No. 10 Penn State: Before an amazing run in the conference tourney, the red-hot Nittany Lions were NIT-bound. They’re still not beating former Owl Bill Cosby’s squad …

NO. 2 SAN DIEGO STATE vs. No. 15 Northern Colorado: Carl Weathers is a former Aztec football star. NCU figures to end up like Weathers in this scene from “Predator” …

SOUTHWEST REGION

NO. 1 KANSAS vs. No. 16 Boston University: The Jayhawks cruise, even with alum Mandy Patinkin and Inigo Montoya in the starting lineup …

NO. 8 UNLV vs. No. 9 Louisville: Suge Knight went to UNLV. He also got Tupac and Dre together for this tune before the latter bolted from Death Row records …

NO. 5 VANDERBILT vs. No. 12 Richmond: Vandy’s a fine school, but talk about slim pickings for famous alum who are now entertainers …

NO. 4 LOUISVILLE vs. No. 13 Morehead State: Chuck Woolery went to Morehead State, which will be out in one-and-one (as opposed to two-and-two). Still, this clip is great. Bring back “The Love Connection” …

NO. 6 GEORGETOWN vs. No. 11 VCU: Good for the Rams extending their middle finger at the experts who ripped their selection. Carl Reiner is a Hoya. He also directed this classic …

NO. 3 PURDUE vs. No. 14 St. Peters: Being a little short-handed won’t hurt the Boilermakers in their opener. Col. John “Hannibal” Smith, played by Purdue alum George Peppard, and the “A-Team” will see to that …

NO. 7 TEXAS A&M vs. No. 10 Florida State: Angered by their lower-than-deserved seed, the Aggies go “Rip Torn” (a Texas A&M alum) on the Seminoles …

NO. 2 NOTRE DAME vs. No. 15 Akron: Even if alum George Wendt (Norm from “Cheers”) suits up, the Irish roll into the second round …

SOUTHEAST REGION

NO. 1 PITTSBURGH vs. No. 16 UNC-Asheville: Former Panther Adrian Cronauer was immortalized by Robin Williams in “Good Morning, Vietnam.” He’ll be saying “goodbye Asheville” in round one …

No. 8 Butler vs. NO. 9 OLD DOMINION: ODU wins by default for having a former student who did have a hit song in Kenna …

NO. 5 KANSAS STATE vs. No. 12 Utah State: Kirstie Alley went to K-State. Like Sam Malone did with Rebecca, the Aggies will fail against the Wildcats …

NO. 4 WISCONSIN vs. No. 13 Belmont: Not even the aliens from “Cocoon,” for which former Badger Don Ameche received an Oscar, could save the Bruins …

No. 6 St. John’s vs. NO. 11 GONZAGA: Steve Lavin has done an amazing job with the Red Storm in his first year, but I’ll take Bing Crosby’s alma mater here …

NO. 3 BYU vs. No. 14 Wofford: Former Cougar Jeremy Coon produced “Napoleon Dynamite.” BYU routs Wofford, even if Uncle Rico starts …

No. 7 UCLA vs. No. 10 MICHIGAN STATE: As he did in this scene from “The Godfather,” James Caan, a former Spartans, laughs at the notion that the tourney-tested Spartans will lose in the first round …

NO. 2 FLORIDA vs. No. 15 UCSB: Like Sister Hazel, whose band members attended UF, the Gators will win it …

FINAL FOUR: Ohio State, Duke, Kansas, Pittsburgh

NATIONAL CHAMPION: Ohio State over Kansas

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