March 21, 2013

So, you want to talk brackets

by Dan Bilicki In: Basketball

I’ll start by saying that I am no expert in college basketball. I know maybe a dozen players in the NCAA and that’s a generous estimate. The base of knowledge is essentially what I’ve learned in the past few days of reading previews for the tournament starting today.

So, why should you listen – err, read – my opinion? Because it’s usually the person who knows the least about the bracket that turns out to be the winner. Granted, I can’t recall if I’ve ever won a pool, which more than likely means that I haven’t. Heck, if I had, I would be bragging about it more often.

So, here’s what I think of the tournament in a regional breakdown.

MIDWEST

Frisky underdog: St. Mary’s – they’ve already won one game and I’d take them over Memphis.

Darkhorse: Saint Louis – the Bilikens may not be known by many, but they could bust your bracket by beating Louisville.

First big favourite to fall: Duke against Michigan State in the Sweet 16 – Yes, the top four teams are that strong in this region.

Best game: Louisville vs. Saint Louis in the Sweet 16.

Winner: Michigan State – can’t go against Tom Izzo.

WEST

Frisky underdog: Wichita State.

Darkhorse: Wisconsin.

First big favourite to fall: Gonzaga against Wisconsin in the Sweet 16.

Best game: New Mexico against Ohio State in the Sweet 16.

Winner: Ohio State.

SOUTH

Frisky underdog: North Carolina – You can never count out the Tarheels, even if they’re only an eighth seed.

Darkhorse: VCU – Shaka Smart has proven to be a great leader.

First favourite to fall: Michigan against VCU in the round of 32.

Best game: Florida vs. UCLA in the Round of 32.

Winner: Kansas – Got to love Ben McLemore.

EAST

Frisky underdog: Temple.

Darkhorse: Bucknell.

First favourite to fall: Indiana against Miami in the regional final.

Best game: Indiana against Miami in the regional final.

Winner: Miami – could’ve been a no. 1 seed.

THE FINAL FOUR

The teams: Michigan State, Ohio State, Kansas, Miami.

The big winner: Kansas over Michigan State.

Why: They can score at will and have some tournament experience.

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