Four reasons upsets are not really upsets

Originally Published: November 28, 2006
By Jay Bilas | ESPN.com
On ESPN.com this past weekend, a headline read "Salukis shock Hokies." Were you shocked by Southern Illinois' 69-64 victory? I wasn't.

Southern Illinois was in the NCAA Tournament last season out of a very good league. Virginia Tech was not in the NCAA Tournament, and despite playing some pretty good basketball, was not really even on the fringe of the Tournament.

So how can it be a shock? The answer is: It can't. We have to stop calling these games shocks or upsets or surprises. It was not a shock to see Wichita State beat LSU, it was just a big road win. It may have been a mild surprise, but it was hardly a shock. The same goes for Gonzaga beating North Carolina. Were the Heels the favorites? Yes, but it is insulting to good teams and to the game to keep calling these games shocks and acting like these are earth-shaking upsets. It is not a shock to see Butler beat Notre Dame, Indiana, Tennessee and Gonzaga. It is a mild surprise, but not a shock.

Jay Bilas

College Basketball analyst