Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith tried to guess NCAA Tournament team's mascots during halftime of the Texas vs. Tennessee game. Photo Credit: CBS Photo Credit: CBS

During halftime of Saturday’s NCAA Tournament game between Texas and Tennessee, Ernie Johnson and Clark Kellogg tested Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith on their knowledge of NCAA Tournament team mascots. How did it go?

When the game was over, Barkley proclaimed “This is the worst game ever, America.” Which is to say, it went great.

Things started smoothly enough. Kellogg showed the first mascot and both Smith and Barkley quickly and correctly identified it as the Michigan State Spartans mascot. Barkley even knew his name, Sparty. Then things went off the rails.

When Kellogg flipped Card No. 2, Barkley quickly claimed “Baylor Bears,” which was not correct.

“That’s not a bear,” Smith said.

“That’s a bear,” Barkley replied. “What the hell do you think it is?”

Smith fired back, “That looks like a cub.”

A chuckling Barkley replied, “You know a cub is a bear, right?”

Johnson eventually gave a hint that the team was presently trailing in overtime. Barkley then guessed “the Oakland Bears.” Kellogg and Johnson replied that Oakland is the Golden Grizzlies.

Kellogg flipped the third card and Johnson said, “You should get this, Chuckster.”

“How the hell would I know that?” he asked. After being reminded it’s where he’s from, Barkley correctly guessed the UAB Blazers. He even guessed the mascot’s name, Blaze.

As Smith and Barkley bickered, Johnson quipped, “Hey this is some game, isn’t it, folks? Yes. I agree.” Then came the next card.

“Oh, that’s the Peacocks,” Smith said.

When Johnson asked, “What school?” Barkley fired back with, “Seton Hall?”

“No, Seton Hall’s not even in the tournament, fool,” Smith said. For those keeping score at home, Seton Hall is also the Pirates, not the Peacocks. Barkley did at least get the state right as like Seton Hall, Saint Peters is in New Jersey.

Both quickly guessed that the next card was North Carolina State’s mascot. Smith’s guess of the mascot’s name, “I get beat by North Carolina all the time,” was not accepted.

When the next card came up, Smith guessed both Virginia and Gonzaga, prompting Barkley to say, “You don’t get to just keep naming people.” Neither guess was correct, as it was Duquesne.

The final card came up and Smith correctly guessed that it was the Grand Canyon Antelope. When asked for his name, Smith guessed “Ante” while Barkley guessed “Lope.” Neither said Thunder, the correct guess.

As Kellogg was laughing and Johnson tried to move to the next segment, Barkley said, “This is the worst game ever. This is the worst game ever, America.”

Worst ever? Possibly. But in terms of entertainment value, not even close.

[Photo Credit: CBS]

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