Your Mascot-By-Mascot Analysis of the NCAA Tournament Field: Part 2

East Region

1 – Ohio State Buckeyes vs. 16 – UT-San Antonio Roadrunners / Alcorn State Beavers

2004 NCAA 1st Round: Texas-San Antonio v Stanford
My girlfriend went to Ohio State, and even she is not sure what a Buckeye is. It's either a tree, a nut, the optical organ of a male deer, or something far more sinister. That's right, I'm talking about Brutus Buckeye, the weirdest mascot to ever grace the field.

Judging by what we can see of Brutus, a Buckeye is some strange form of anthropomorphic nut with the body of a human being, which means that someone in Ohio Valley was having sex with a tree.

Anyway, in a fight with a Roadrunner, I immediately imagine Brutus and the Alcorn State Brave trying to use dynamite or TNT or some kind of rocket-skates which either blow up or push Brutus off a cliff, while he somehow defies gravity until coming to the startling realization that he is indeed standing on thin air, all to great comedic effect!

ADVANTAGE: UT-San Antonio Roadrunners

8 – George Mason Patriots vs. 9 – Villanova Wildcats

More Wildcats? Seriously, what is with the obsession with Wildcats at the collegiate level? We're going with the Patriots on this one. USA! USA!

ADVANTAGE: George Mason Patriots.

5 – West Virginia Mountaineers vs. 12 – Clemson Tigers / UAB Blazers

You may be asking yourself, why would UAB pick a Blazer for their mascot? How can a smart sports jacket strike fear into the hearts of its opponents? Well, you'd be surprised how much confidence you can get from being well-dressed.

Unfortunately, Tigers don't really care how you are dressed, and quickly eat the UAB Blazers. As for the mountaineers, being able to use ropes to climb a mountain will not help you when an 8-foot jungle cat is stalking you.

ADVANTAGE: Clemson Tigers.

4 – Kentucky Wildcats vs. 13 – Princeton Tigers

More jungle cats. I propose new mascot names for these two. We'll go with the Princeton Wilting Tulips and the Kentucky Murder-Machines. It's kind of a no-brainer who wins this one.

ADVANTAGE: Princeton Wilting Tulips

6 – Xavier Musketeers vs. 11 – Marquette Golden Eagles

As if eagles weren't already over-hunted by poachers and the like, then Marquette decided to have them be made of pure gold. I've never seen anyone sword fight or shoot muskets at a bird before, but it would be an interesting fight. I think it would go down something like this:

MUSKETEER: Uh, can we wait for a second? There's supposed to be two more of me here.

GOLDEN EAGLE: Kaaaaw! (claws musketeer's left eye out)

MUSKETEER: Eat this, Golden Eagle! (Shoots wildly inaccurate musket from the 19th century and spends a full 10 minutes trying to reload it)

GOLDEN EAGLE: Kaaaaw! (Claws musketeer's right eye out) [[[/chat]]]

ADVANTAGE: Marquette Golden Eagles.

3 – Syracuse Orangemen vs. Indiana State Sycamores

I can't think of a more uneventful fight. Seriously, how unintimidating are these mascots. What is an Orangeman going to do? Shoot pulp at you? And how is a Sycamore going to fight anything? "Oh no! That Sycamore is pissed! We better not step underneath any of its branches that might arbitrarily fall off!"

ADVANTAGE: No one wins in a fight between oranges and a tree. No one.

7 – Washington Huskies vs. 10 – Georgia Bulldogs

This is another tough one. While Huskies are generally known to be intelligent animals who can work together as a team in extreme weather conditions, the Bulldog is very ugly.

ADVANTAGE: Washington Huskies

2 – North Carolina Tar Heels vs. Long Island Blackbirds

We have another snooze-alert. How exactly does a Tarheel fight? By not moving? I'm not sure how staying stationary is an effective strategy. A better name would have been Knifeheels or Semiautomaticmachinegunheels. Now that would be a sweet fight, because you'd have to do back-flips to shoot someone. Wouldn't that be sweet if someone was doing back-flips to shoot someone? Wait, what are we talking about? Oh yeah.

ADVANTAGE: Long Island Blackbirds

– – – – –

Round 2

8 – George Mason Patriots vs. 16 – UT-San Antonio Roadrunners

I guess the question here is what are the Roadrunner's political leanings? Is it some kind of communist Roadrunner or maybe a fanatical terrorist Roadrunner? If not, I don't know if the Patriot really has any motivation to fight.

Let's say the Roadrunner is waving a tiny American flag. Not only is this one of the cuter images I can think of in my head, it would also cause the Patriot to give the Roadrunner a hearty handshake and ask him if he's registered to vote. And that's when the Roadrunner strikes.

ADVANTAGE: UT San Antonio Roadrunners

12 – Clemson Tigers vs. 13 – Princeton Wilting Tulips

Everyone knows Tigers are allergic to Tulips.

ADVANTAGE: Princeton Wilting Tulips

The Marquette Golden Eagles get a bye this round due to the unimaginative Syracuse Orangemen and the Indiana State Sycamores.

7 – Washington Huskies vs. 15 – Long Island Blackbirds

On first glance, a fight between a Washington Husky and a Long Island Blackbird might seem like a wash, but think about Blackbirds for second. Aren't they synonymous for someone who has been domestically abused?

There was that song by the Beatles and everything and then Jay-Z called Rhianna a blackbird after all that stuff with Chris Brown went down. We're gonna go with the Huskies on this one, but seriously, Long Island Blackbirds, you shouldn't keep going back to them. I know they say they love you, but you're better off without them.

ADVANTAGE: Washington Huskies

– – – – –

Sweet 16

13 – Princeton Wilting Tulips vs. 16 – UT-San Antonio Roadrunners

Unfortunately for the 'Lips, their Athletic Department signs a 10-year sponsorship deal with the Acme Corporation, and we all know how that turns out.

ADVANTAGE: UT-San Antonio Roadrunners

*7 – Washington Huskies vs. 11 – Marquette Golden Eagles *

Dogs are, of course, colorblind, so the Husky will mistake the Marquette Golden Eagle for a regular Eagle and look past the match-up to their fight with the Roadrunners. This is your classic trap game.

ADVANTAGE: Marquette Golden Eagles

– – – – –

Elite 8

11 – Marquette Golden Eagles vs. 16 UT-San Antonio Roadrunners

UT-San Antonio Roadrunners (Fastus Birdus) vs. the Marquette Golden Eagles (Birdus Expensivus). The Golden Eagle begins by painting al fresco what looks like a very realistic train tunnel on a solid rock wall in the American Southwest. He sneakily hides behind a bush waiting for the Roadrunner to run smack into the scene, but as he approaches, the Roadrunner magically passes through the wall and runs through the painted scene.

Perplexed, the Golden Eagle decides to run full-speed ahead to chase after the Roadrunner, but somehow the wall retains its solidity and breaks the Golden Eagles neck in four places.

After three year in a coma, the Golden Eagle awakes in a hospital room in Phoenix, Arizona, where the Roadrunner, dressed as a nurse, places a pillow over its face and smothers him to death, afterwards saying that he wanted the Golden Eagle to know who it was that had killed him.

Who knew the Roadrunner was such a sick, sick bastard?

ADVANTAGE: UT-San Antonio Roadrunners make it to the Final Four. And let's just give them the national title, too.