It is being suggested that UCLA is lucky to be alive in the NCAA tournament. . . .
Not so. . . .
Tyus Edney beat Missouri Sunday by dashing nearly the entire length of the court, weaving through light traffic, dribbling behind his back once, and finally lofting the ball over an opponent nearly a foot taller, off the backboard, and through the net at the buzzer. . . .
That was skill, not luck. . . . The luckiest team of the day was Arkansas. . . .
The defending champions had to rely on a technical foul committed by Syracuse's Lawrence Moten, who called a timeout when none were left with four seconds remaining in regulation play, to make one of two free throws and send the game into overtime. . . .
UCLA played poorly much of the afternoon at Boise, but even some of John Wooden's teams turned in subpar performances before surviving games in the early rounds of the tournament. . . .
In 1974, it took them three overtimes to beat Dayton in the first round, and in Wooden's final year, 1975, they needed an overtime to eliminate Michigan in the first round and then beat Montana by only three points in the second round. . . .
Edney's game-winner was reminiscent of that by Danny Ainge of BYU against Notre Dame in the 1981 East Regional. . . .
There is no reason for UCLA to take Mississippi State, the longshot in the West Regional, lightly on Thursday. . . .
The Bulldogs were good enough during the regular season to win at Kentucky and beat Florida by 23 points and Arkansas by 21 in consecutive games at home. . . .
Bob Boyd coached at Mississippi State and Bailey Howell and Jeff Malone played there. . . .
UCLA's winning streak of 15 games is its longest since the NCAA-record 88 that began in 1971 and ended in 1974. . . .
Best Sweet Sixteen matchup: Connecticut vs. Maryland. . . . Team on a roll: Kentucky, winner of its two tournament games by a total of 68 points. . . .
Most impressive victory: North Carolina rallying from 14 points down to rout Iowa State, 73-51. . . .
Most productive conference: Atlantic Coast, with four teams left. . . .
Most disappointing conference: Big Ten, with none left. . . .
The call against Syracuse was another example of the penalty for a technical foul in the NBA--one free throw--being more fair than that in college basketball--two free throws and possession of the ball. . . .
Arkansas Coach Nolan Richardson has changed his tune from last season and now identifies the enemy as the Razorbacks themselves, not the media. . . .
The city of Fresno is excited about the possibility of Jerry Tarkanian returning to his alma mater, Fresno State, as coach. The question mark is Athletic Director Gary Cunningham. When he was an assistant coach at UCLA under Wooden and then head coach, Cunningham wasn't known to be a huge Tarkanian fan. . . .
The public is invited to practice sessions that begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday for the four teams in the women's West Regional semifinals at Pauley Pavilion--Vanderbilt, Purdue, North Carolina and Stanford. . . .
Michael Jordan no longer has Horace Grant as a Chicago Bull teammate, but he does have Toni Kukoc. . . .
The Houston Rockets' all-University of Houston starting front line Sunday in their victory over the Philadelphia 76ers was Hakeem Olajuwon at center, and Clyde Drexler and Carl Herrera at the forwards. . . .
The rivalry between Afternoon Deelites and Timber Country could develop into a great one, but don't overlook Lake George, the third-place finisher in the San Felipe Stakes. . . .
In his first try at a distance, Lake George was only two lengths behind Timber Country and jockey Eddie Delahoussaye said, "If he improves off this, he might win the Santa Anita Derby." . . .
Some were disappointed that Afternoon Deelites didn't crush the field Sunday, but trainer Richard Mandella said, "We're just praying he stays as good as he is because I don't believe he could get much better." . . .
Larry The Legend's reputation was enhanced by unbeaten Petionville's victory in the Louisiana Derby. Petionville is the only horse who has beaten Larry. . . .
The concert business is booming at the Grand Olympic, where nine shows have been booked for the month of April. . . .
The best golfer hardly anybody knows is Loren Roberts. . . .
So many of them had scares in the first two rounds that maybe the teams left in the men's NCAA tournament should be known as the Sweat Sixteen.