Lots of talk lately about expanding the NCAA Men's basketball tournament from 65 to 96 teams. I would have to vote against such a measure even though expansion of just ONE team would have perhaps saved my beloved Mississippi State Bulldogs this year. By all accounts State was the last team left out this season, but that's the way it goes. They had their chances to earn an at-large berth or to win their way via the SEC tournament, but couldn't get it done.

I wouldn't want to see the tournament watered down with 31 more teams in it. I mean obviously I think MSU, Illinois, Virginia Tech, and Ole Miss could be competitive in this year's event, but are there really 27 others that would be worthy of going? What would the squads at the bottom of that heap look like?

If anything, expand to just 68 teams. You could let the 8 teams with lowest RPI compete in the play-in round. The four winners would advance and leave us with the nice round number of 64. And let's face facts. The tourney is already perfect the way it is. What would a bracket with 96 teams even look like? Would it all fit on a single piece of paper for the all-important office pools? I don't want to be filling out my bracket with a magnifying glass. I don't want staples in the way of my prognostications. I don't want to have to be researching the entire MEAC or SWAC standings before making my picks.

It's a big deal to make the tourney now, because it's not open to just everybody. Sure some weak schools from conferences with a automatic bid get in, but they have to bust their tails in their conference tourneys to get there. You can see the pure emotion of those teams when they win their way in and on Selection Sunday when their name appears on the grid. Of course, those teams usually end up as 16 seeds and get pounded by 30 in the first round, but at least they got to dance on the big stage.

So as the old saying goes, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." The NCAA tournament is doing just fine. Interest is at an all-time high. Upsets are still exciting. Bracketology and bubble watches are still hot fodder on the web, and on Selection Sunday we're all still debating who got lucky and who got shafted by the committee.

Let the road to Indianapolis begin. I'm sure it will as thrilling as ever with plenty of surprises and plot twists. As for me, I'll be following those Mississippi State Bulldogs on the road to the "other" Final Four... the one in New York for the NIT.