So here I am on Friday night, in a state of disbelief. I sit with my head in my hands at Lucas Oil Stadium as a crucial game in the Sweet 16 for me goes up in smoke. The Michigan State Spartans (who trailed by double digits on two occasions against Northwestern this year!) scrapped their way back from a 13-point first half deficit and knocked out the defending champion Kansas Jayhawks. For the record Illini fans, Bill Self returned true to form by completely mismanaging the 2nd half of this one.
Once KU folded up, it signaled the beginning of the end. Sure I had Villanova getting to the Final Four, but MSU plowed thru KU and top-seeded Louisville to cause significant damage to many brackets around the country. I've been in NCAA pools since I was 8-years old, I just want to get in the top three once! Once is all I ask!
**From an atmosphere standpoint, Indy was great. Louisville took over the town since it's just an hour away, but the Cardinals beat up Arizona so bad (the biggest Sweet 16 blowout in 42 years!), most fans were in a coma late in the 2nd half and the Michigan State-Kansas game was a bit sleepy most of the way. Spartans roared back, KU couldn't execute and everyone was sent streaming for the taverns in the Circle City. (Speaking of which, I forgot how much I appreciate the No Smoking Ban!)
**Heading to Indy down I-65 won't be fun this summer if you go thru Lowell and Roselawn. The construction project squeezes everything down to one lane. Southbound I found a 6-mile backup that barely moved. Northbound we crawled for 3 miles. Do yourself a favor and look at a map. One alternative is via State Road 55 thru Thayer and Shelby and double back to the interstate using SR 2 or SR 10. I did and that saved me at least 30 minutes.
But be forewarned, the Kankakee River is pretty high and it has a history of forcing the road to close. In that case, head over to US 231 instead.
**Spring breakers still are keeping travel times low...then the sun comes up. The glare jacked up the Ike travel time today past the hour mark very quickly and it hadn't calmed down as of 10:30 am. Stevenson, Kennedy and Elgin O'Hare had their problems, same goes for the Reagan and Jane Addams tolls. Get your shades, they'll be the most important thing you grab before you head out the door for the next month or so.
**Did you notice the Travel Times jingle went away? If you didn't, good. We're going to experiment with something new, something fun. If you have suggestions for what music I should play underneath our travel time screens, leave a comment!
**Winter Parking Ban Countdown: 2 more days!