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Qualified

Posted by Christopher L. Gasper, Globe Staff  March 15, 2011 02:15 AM

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NCAA Tournament selection was one of the few times in life that being an Ivy Leaguer is not beneficial to success. Harvard, RPI of 35, had a legitimate case for an at-large berth after losing a heartbreaking Ivy League playoff to Princeton. Judging by the fact they are a six-seed in the NIT, the Crimson was never seriously considered to appear in the tourney for the first time since 1946.

That's kind of shocking considering that a team Harvard beat, Boston College, got a No. 1 seed in the NIT and that breathless TV analysts were lamenting the travesty of Colorado, a squad Harvard waxed by 16, being left out of the field.

One of the problems that Tommy Amaker is going to have in building the Harvard program to national prominence is transcending the perception gap that exists between the talent on his team and the traditional opinion of non-Bill Bradley Ivy League players. The Ivy isn't all backdoor cuts and advanced theories any longer. These guys can play.

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The word

Christopher L. Gasper riffs on the news

Dearth

...That's what the Patriots have when it comes to picks in the 2013 NFL Draft, which starts Thursday. After all those years of stockpiling picks the way a survivalist does non-perishables the Patriots have just five picks in this year's draft, thanks to Band-aid trades for Albert Haynesworth, Chad Ochocinco and Aqib Talib. Five picks would be the fewest draft picks in franchise history. (Part of that is attributable to the trimming of the draft to just seven rounds in 1994). Further complicating matters is that two of the Patriots' greatest needs are at wide receiver and cornerback, positions where they have sustained draft droughts. With that in mind, I'm convinced the Patriots are going trade back out of the first round of a quanity-over-quality draft where you're just as likely to pick a Pro Bowl player in the second and third round as you are in the first round.

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