Word Count: 68
Average Length: 5.56
Difficulty: 3.5 out of 5
Here’s a straightforward themeless for y’all. Solving notes (which I just realized read more like homework assignments) are below the photo.
Budding hydrangea in my backyard this morning. (48 Down)
14A: I understand this phenomenon from the player’s perspective, but it truly dismays me as a college basketball fan.
15A: Oz was a wonderful author of both fiction and non-fiction and a voice of wisdom, reason, and humanity. Check out Dear Zealot, Judas, and A Tale of Love and Darkness.
27A: 18 lines, 62 words, and as lyrically powerful as anything you’ll read. Check it out on the Poetry Foundation’s web site (poetryfoundation.org).
34D: All the corvid birds (e.g., crows, ravens and the species in the answer) are amazingly intelligent animals. See https://www.discovermagazine.com/planet-earth/the-more-we-learn-about-crow-brains-the-more-humanlike-their-intelligence.