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State Your Case: South on the rise in first round

March 31, 2008, 4:19 am
By Todd Turner
DirtonDirt.com chief writer

The South will rise again? Believe it, at least according the first-round results of DirtonDirt.com's exclusive bracket-style tournament that will determine the best state in Dirt Late Model racing. In virtually every first-round matchup, the southernmost state advanced to the second round as eight losing states were sent packing from the 24-state tournament, which will officially crown its champion on April 7. | First-round story

West Virginia (over Michigan in a trouncing), South Carolina (merely a rout over Minnesota), North Carolina (far and away ahead of California), Missouri (easy victory over New York) and Arkansas (no problems against South Dakota) were among the states advancing to the second round with barely a hiccup.

The southern losers? Virginia (edged by neighbor Maryland by a single vote), Louisiana (whipped by Wisconsin, the lone WISSOTA outpost still in the tournament) and Alabama, which gave a valiant effort before succumbing to its neighbor and fellow southerner Mississippi, a state that pulled away in the final hours of voting by the 24-writer panel that crafted the DirtonDirt.com capsules for each state.

Fans of upsets didn't see a Davidson or Western Kentucky slip into the mix. The tournament, with each of the 24 states seeded, went according to form, although 19th-seeded Virginia gave 14th-seeded Maryland the biggest scare of the first round.

The second-round pairings set up a couple of interesting matchups. On the left side of the bracket, the home of Billy Moyer (13th-seeded Arkansas) will try to upset the birthplace of Moyer (fourth-seeded Iowa). On the right side of the bracket, neighbors West Virginia (10) and Pennsylvania (7) battle in a matchup that could lend credence to complaints from the Pennsylvania capsule writer Keith Koval that his state isn't getting the respect it deserves.

The second-round results are scheduled to be revealed on April 2 with quarterfinal and semifinal winners in the days following. The champion is scheduled to be revealed on April 7.

State Your Case Tournament

(Seeds in parentheses)
Second-round matchups
(Winners revealed April 2)
Kentucky (8) vs. Missouri (9)
Ohio (1) vs. Mississippi (16)
Indiana (5) vs. Wisconsin (12)
Iowa (4) vs. Arkansas (13)
Pennsylvania (7) vs. West Virginia (10)
Tennessee (2) vs. South Carolina (15)
Georgia (6) vs. North Carolina (11)
Illinois (3) vs. Maryland (14)
Winners revealed April 4
Winners revealed April 6
Winner revealed April 7

Capsule contributors

Alabama - Tim O’Brien
Arkansas - Todd Turner
California - K.C. Rooney
Georgia - Bob Appleget
Illinois - Terry Young
Indiana - Bob Markos
Iowa - Barry Johnson
Kentucky - Mike Sullivan
Louisiana - Greg Holmes
Maryland - Matt Felten
Michigan - Dave DeHem and Verwayne Greenhoe
Minnesota - Rich Olson
Mississippi - Tim Lee
Missouri - Jimmy Dearing
New York - Chip Stebbins
North Carolina - Thomas Pope
Ohio - Bill Holder
Pennsylvania - Keith Koval
South Carolina - Gene Murphy
South Dakota - Rob Fogle
Tennessee - Michael Moats
Virginia - Brian Tidball
West Virginia - Ernie Shelton
Wisconsin - Jerry O’Brien

A special thanks to historian Bob Markos for sharing his vast knowledge

Cover art image by Barry Lenhart

Tournament bracket

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