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The Shotgun/Throwdown: National Semis/Final Four (4/3/10) Edition

Welcome, By-Godders, to the Shotgun/Throwdown, WVU's nationally recognized best place for sports links, information, sophomoric humor and daily distractions. We're being brought to you today by Sun King Brewery, in honor of our host site of Indianapolis.

Gameday has finally reached us. We all know what's at stake. The story-lines have been beaten to death, ad hoc infinitum (including many inside today). To quote part of the Herm Edwards rant, "You play to WIN the game!!" We didn't come this far for the experience. 40 minutes for 40 more. We do what we do. Simple, yet it's the truth. Tips, suggestions and requests are always great and don't forget to VOTE. Everything you need to prepare yourself is after the jump...

To mix a couple quotes from Tony Caridi and Craig Ferguson:

"It's a great day for the Mountaineers, everybody!!!"

Let's GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What You May Have Missed:

NCAA Final Four Preview - Duke - BGN

Today’s the day for WVU - Parkersburg News and Sentinel

Only Thing Left Now is to Play the Game - Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

80 Minutes of Greatness -

WVU, Duke set for Final Four showdown - Times West Virginian

Final Four Countdown - West Virginia's Eyewitness Sports
Several stories and links on this one....Thanks Dave!!!

Game watches around the country - WVU Alumni Assn.

Who is The Public Betting in the 2010 Final Four? WVU 54%, Duke 46% - The Spread

Already on high alert, West Virginia police gather reinforcements for Saturday night - USA TODAY

NCAA Basketball 2010: The BCS Version - Rush The Court
...and yes we'd get screwed here

WVUSportsBuzz - Twitpic
Several pics from the last couple days

DO WHAT WE DO - Spreadshirt
Get your copies of the "motto" T's here

AP Video: Duke, WVU, MSU Arrive at Final 4 - YouTube

WVU Basketball Photos -
Photos from yesterday's shoot-around session

Huge Turnout At Lucas Oil Just For Practice - WVMetroNews
Photo Gallery

Final Four Photo Gallery V - BGN

Friday At The Final Four - BGN
Dunking session video link

News of Note:

Duke, WVU do what they do - Charleston Daily Mail

NCAA notebook: WVU, Duke talk gets 'slappy' - Charleston Daily Mail

Rare Final Four classic could be on deck - Stewart Mandel -

The intangibles behind Duke, W. Virginia, Butler, Michigan St. - Seth Davis -
Need I say it? I'll just abbreviate it...IS.

Duke vs. West Virginia - Andy Glockner -
and another: IS

Four different Final Four storylines - ESPN

West Virginia-Duke Timeline - MSNsportsNET.Com
Some memorable encounters from the series through the years are documented here.

Mountaineers-Blue Devils a clash of cultures - Times West Virginian

Mountaineer Fever Is Upon Us -

Deployed state GIs rooting for WVU from afar - Charleston Gazette

West Virginians' love affair with Mountaineers runs deep - Charleston Gazette

WVU can expect fundraising boost from Final Four run - Charleston Gazette

All parties benefit from Final Four trip - Times West Virginian
Hertzel Column

Huggins is a master at flipping script - Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

Group Huggs - Charleston Gazette

Holding Huggs to a promise - Register-Herald

Bob Huggins' 'Black Hat' image going gray - Cincinnati Enquirer

Elder Huggins hard influence - PPG

Huggins, Krzyzewski back at Final Four - Parkersburg News and Sentinel (AP)

Huggins planted Final Four seed on recruiting trail - Charleston Gazette

West Virginia not yet among elite - PPG

WVU, Duke look in mirror in Final Four semifinal - Charleston Daily Mail

Opposites Attract With West Virginia, Duke - Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

The Same Role For The Mountaineers - WVMetroNews

Play like West Virginia to win - Beyond the Arc/MSNBC

Battle of the boards - Charleston Gazette

Defense paves way to Indy for West Virginia - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Mountaineers Behind The Scenes - MSNsportsNET.Com

A Common Bond - MSNsportsNET.Com

N.J. college basketball never should have let Da'Sean Butler, Lance Thomas get away - Star Ledger

Butler 'way up there' on all-time list - Charleston Daily Mail

Ready to Roll - MSNsportsNET.Com
Video interviews with Flowers and Ebanks

Player Comments - MSNsportsNET.Com
Video of Wells and KJ answering press questions

Bryant clings to hope of playing in Final Four - ESPN Chicago

Injured Bryant looks like a no-go for WVU - Charleston Gazette

WVU reminisces with Beilein - Charleston Daily Mail

Da'Sean Butler is Awesome, Call's John Beilein's System "the best I've ever been a part of" - Maize n Brew
We at Maize n Brew are now Mountaineer fans. Go get 'em Da'Sean. - We've (WVU) got some new fans....from an unlikely place

For Jones, It’s All About Winning - Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

Mazzulla key for WVU vs. Duke - Charleston Gazette

Healthy Mazzulla boosts West Virginia - PPG

Joe Mazzulla’s diary: We have to ‘do what we do’ - Providence Journal

WVU fans flocking to Flowers' Twitter page - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

West Seeks Redemption -

WVU's West makes rare distinction with dad at Final Four - Charleston Daily Mail

WVU frosh hit first-year jackpot - Charleston Gazette

Fulford pulling for Kilicli - Register-Herald

Zoned Out - BGN

A Final Four devoid of superstars - ESPN

WVU-Duke has star power - Bluefield Daily Telegraph

Southern W.Va. a part of Mountaineer tradition - Bluefield Daily Telegraph

WVU Sports - WVMetroNews
again...too much to clip, peruse at your leisure and their HOMEPAGE

Jerry West sees alma mater cutting down nets - Martinsburg Journal
Mickey's Column

Morgantown, Durham mayors wager: a letter to Google - Charleston Gazette (AP)

Hank Jr. Pays Tribute to Mountaineers - WVMetroNews

News of the Enemy:

So Many Reasons To Root Against Duke - NCAABB FanHouse
I only need one...they're in our way right now

Indianapolis Star apologizes for Mike Krzyzewski illustration - (AP)
AWWWWWW, poor wittle guy

Final Four notebook: Krzyzewski calls paper's jabs 'juvenile' - Charleston Gazette

Duke wants to be aggressive against Mountaineers' 1-3-1 zone - Charleston Gazette

Blue Devils haven't forgotten Mazzulla's slap two years ago - Charleston Gazette

Duke's Smith on quest to honor his father - Courier-Journal

Drawing draws the ire of Coach K  - Times West Virginian
Hertzel's Notebook

Coach K's Still Got His Touch - NCAABB FanHouse

Around the League (and Beyond):

NCAA tournament Notebook: Legends fail to faze Butler's young coach - PPG

Final Four Tourism: A Butler Campus Visit –

Jim Boeheim is the AP Coach of the Year - Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician

Calipari talks to Elisha Justice - Card Chronicle

Calipari prepared for mass exodus; Wall says decision to go pro not made - Courier-Journal

Lawrence Academy Coach On Shabazz Napier, Who Committed To UConn - Hartford Courant

Your Holtzism of the Week - Voodoo Five

Falling just short of 1,000-yard season is all motivation Rutgers' Joe Martinek needs - Star Ledger

Irish recruit Matt James killed in spring break accident - South Bend Tribune

Alabama football: Nick Saban statue to be unveiled in August - Ledger-Enquirer

What's On Tap:

NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament National Semi-Finals on CBS

#5 Butler Bulldogs vs. #5 Michigan State Spartans - ESPN
6:07 pm EDT from Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN. Spartans are giving 3.

#2 West Virginia Mountaineers vs. #1 Duke Blue Devils - ESPN
Approx. 8:47 pm EDT from Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN. Duke is giving 1.

Videos of Interest:

Videos of (Dis)Interest:

Sticking with the quasi-music theme I started back during the BET...he's a native Indianan and the song fits most of us native West Virginians.

This was too good not to post:

Car Show Babes Gallery of the Week:

Miss Throwdown:

Today's Miss Throwdown is another gorgeous SI swimsuit model. She's from Russia and her full name is Anne Vyalitsyna, but she's better known as Anne V.

As a bonus, we get Irina Shayk in this one too:

Sun King Brewery image via