If you're staring at your bracket, bemoaning that pick of Kansas to win it all, don't worry. You're not alone.
More than 42 percent of bracket submissions on ESPN.com had the Jayhawks. (Next highest was Kentucky at 21.4 percent.) Most analysts (including me) had Kansas. Even President Obama liked the Jayhawks.
So how'd we all miss? That's just how it goes in March.
Kansas isn't the first favorite to stumble along the way to the Final Four and it won't be the last. The final weekend doesn't always have the best teams, just the ones that wanted it most and caught a few breaks during the first two weeks.
This game was no different. Northern Iowa was criminally under-seeded at No. 9 and showed why it swept the Missouri Valley regular-season and tournament titles. The Panthers (30-4) have size, experience and guys who can shoot. All three were on display, including some impressive rebounding skills. So give 'em most of the credit.
What's left belongs to Kansas. The Jayhawks finished 33-3 and swept the Big 12 regular-season and tournament titles. That's a stellar season most years. But this was a team targeted as the favorite before the season, and didn't live up to it on Saturday.
Back in August, coach Bill Self knew this loss was a possibility. This year's squad had the championship material, but he knew there were issues, especially when weighed against his 2008 title team.
"Last year, Carolina was the clear-cut favorite. I don't know if we're going to be that. On paper, you'd think we're going to be pretty good. … I like our team's makeup. We've got length, we've got a little bulk, we've got size on the wing and we've got depth," he told me then.
But this team isn't that team we had two years ago. I could look down the line at that team and say, 'He's a pro, he's a pro, he's a pro, he's a potential pro. I don't know that about this team yet."
Throughout the season, Kansas looked like the team most expected – balanced, talented and deep. Saturday, all of that wasn't enough against a team that simply played better.
As for the notion of the tournament being wide open with the Jayhawks out of it … that's a bit much.
Yes, the favorites are gone, but Kentucky, Syracuse, Duke, Ohio State, Kansas State and West Virginia are still in it. That's three No. 1 seeds and three No. 2 seeds, all of which were the teams selected by the people who didn't pick Kansas. I doubt schools like Northern Iowa or Butler or Washington are breathing easier simply because Kansas lost.
Odds are an excellent team like Kentucky or Syracuse -- both of which have been great all season -- cuts down the nets, not an underdog.
After all, the Madness only lasts for so long.
Mike Miller's also on Twitter, usually talkin' hoops. Click here for more.