Greetings from Corvallis, Oregon, site of the 1st round of the NCAA Tournament between the #14 seed South Dakota State and #3 seed Oregon State. This is the fourth time in the Jacks' six tournament appearances that they've played on the higher seed's home court. I asked head coach Aaron Johnston if that gave Oregon State an advantage and he actually laid out a pretty good answer about how it has both its positives and negatives. Hear more from him and other SDSU & Oregon State players below:
Although this is a 14 vs. 3 matchup, we all saw on the men's side how that may not be as big a mismatch as once believed. However, a #14 women's team has yet to defeat a #3 women's team since the NCAA expanded the women's tournament to 64 teams. Complicating matters from simply a matchup standpoint for SDSU is Oregon State center Ruth Hamblin. She's 6'6", the Pac-12 Player of the Year, and has one of the greatest nicknames ever, "The Canadian Hammer" (She's from British Columbia). Both teams discussed how she may be used in Friday's game in the SDSU-Tube video blog below:
I'll have another video blog up Friday morning discussing whether experience matters in this game. The Jacks have 7 freshmen & sophomores who will get their first crack at the Big Dance, but AJ's expecting everyone to contribute against the Pac-12 Champions.
I'll be live-tweeting from press row at Gill Coliseum during the game which starts at 4:00 PM central time. Follow me @DBrownMidcoSN for more on Jacks-Beavers!