Why settle for just one final four college sport? | VailDaily.com
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Why settle for just one final four college sport?

Ian Cropp
Vail, CO Colorado

When either Memphis or Kansas cut down the net from a basketball rim in San Antonio today, most college sports fans will turn off their TVs and not tune back in until football season.

Yes, the women’s final is Tuesday, and the Frozen Four ” the NCAA hockey finals ” kick off Thursday at the Pepsi Center in Denver, but there’s a giant world of college sports out there for the hordes of fans who love to watch (and bet on) student athletes.

Now I’m sure just about everyone is familiar with the final four in San Antonio but let’s not forget about the final four of college chess, the 2008 President’s Cup, held this past weekend in Baltimore. The same University of Maryland Baltimore County Retrievers that were in the big dance got a chance to put a check on fellow opponents Miami (Dade College), University of Texas (at Dallas) and New York University.

If you missed the highlights of ESPN’s Stewart Scott screaming “Boo-yah” when one of the Retrievers used a pawn to take out a rook, don’t worry, I’m sure it’s on YouTube.

I know some of you may be interested to see the next crop of Olympians duke it out at the collegiate boxing championships, but, let’s be honest, you’d be a little more pumped to see who is going to climb the ranks to challenge hot dog world champion Joey Chestnut when the Collegiate National Eating contest takes place April 18 to 19 in San Diego. Oh, if you’re wondering which sport will be paired with it, and you guessed flowboarding, you’d be totally correct. But back to the eating contest for a second ” although I’m not sure they’re even entering, I really hope that the Evergreen State College Geoducks gobble up the competition. If they are serving Rocky Mountain Oysters, my money is on the Rhode Island School of Design Nads.

For those of you who just can’t get enough of winter college sports, there’s the National College Curling Tournament, although I think the Canadian University Curling Championships may make the American contest look like amateur hour. If a regulation tennis court is too much for you to handle, get your brackets ready for the 2008 College Table Tennis National Championships, starting Friday (Do they use the scissors on a Swiss Army Knife to cut the net when they win?)

If big balls are your thing, check out the National College Dodgeball Association finals which kick off on Saturday. And although it’s not official, I do think there is an underground College Cockfighting Tournament.

For college croquet fans out there, don’t get your Brooks Brothers sweater draped over your polo shirt in a bundle just yet, as the United States Croquet Association is on the rise, and a national title match could soon be in the works.

So as spring turns to summer, and students finish exams and head home, you’d figure there would be a lull in college sports. Ha. You’re wrong.

Even if you don’t play billiards, I’m sure it’s tough biding your time until July, when the Association of College Unions International 9-Ball Championships make their way to Tucson, Ariz.

If you think you have to wait until next year’s National Indoor Collegiate Archery Championships, think again. The WUAC (for those inadequately versed in archery lingo, that’s the World University Archery Championships) head to Chinese Taipei from July 7 through 10.

But let’s not fool ourselves, come July 9, our country will come to a near standstill and all of our eyes will be on the College Bass National Championships, the sport’s most prestigious collegiate tournament.

Sports Writer Ian Cropp won the Ultimate All-Nighter College Championships in the caffeine division and can be reached at 748-2935 or icropp@vaildaily.com.


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