The most fun we had Sunday was watching Loyola and their remarkable center Cameron Krutwig.
As we said elsewhere, the guy is not going to overwhelm anyone athletically, but he is a brilliant basketball player.
We saw him make some gorgeous passes against Illinois, step in to pick off some Illinois made, and handle himself very well against Illinois’ massive Kofi Cockburn.
Krutwig is 6-9 and about 250, which is unusually big by normal standards. However, Cockburn is 7-1 and about 280 which is huge by any standard, and he’s a pretty good basketball player too.
But he couldn’t control Krutwig, who compensates for his lack of lift with superb hand-eye coordination and quick moves. Look here at what Bill Raftery calls “the paws that refreshes” and look also at the steal he pulls off near the end of the game.
Well it’s not exactly a steal but the ball goes out of bounds to Loyola, so it’s a turnover he forced. Look at his reaction and consider his passion. He’s a wonderful presence in this tournament.
The guy who complained about Loyola’s being seeded to low was probably right but it doesn’t much matter. The cream ultimately rises to the top, which is exactly what Loyola appears to be doing.