The “Judge Judy” trial pitting UCLA vs. Joe Lunardi might be billed “Blown Gaskets vs. Joey Brackets.”

Less than a week before Selection Sunday, ESPN’s resident NCAA Tournament expert continues to have UCLA lagging as a No. 3 seed in the Midwest Region.

This seems counter to all other available information.

UCLA (28-3) is ranked No. 3 nationally by the AP and USA Today voting coaches.

They are ranked No. 4 in power rankings postulated by ESPN “insider” Jeff Goodman.

Which ESPN expert are we supposed to believe here?

UCLA enters this week’s Pac 12 Tournament in Las Vegas seeded higher in other respected mocks:  Mark Blaudschun of TMG College Sports has UCLA as a No. 2 in the South. 

So do bracket men Stewart Mandel of  (Fox Sports) and Jerry Palm (CBS Sports).

It’s not so much where Lunardi has placed UCLA, though, as to how he’s doing it.

Last week he delivered a 1 minute, 22-second video to justify his Eastwood position on Westwood.

It was a condescending, talk-down-to-them piece presented like Mr. Rogers to kindergartners on Sesame Street.

“Apparently,” Mr. Lunardi says, “if it says UCLA across the jersey, facts don’t matter.”


It’s not that Bruin fans can’t be needy and whiny—they can.

They have a history of thinking their football program is better than it is.

UCLA basketball fans, though, don’t need to be lectured on how the NCAA Tournament works.

Especially from a Philly guy who has concocted the biggest boondoggle gig in the history of sports cable–bracketology.

UCLA is not Podunk State. UCLA has won 11 national titles. Better than that, it once won 38 consecutive, single-elimination tournament games. Think about that. It may be the greatest record in the history of sports. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here.