Wowza, what a day yesterday was. 33 games and we won 27 of them! We now sit at 110-44 overall. That’s good enough for 71%. There’s a huge slate today and I picked EVERY SINGLE ONE. Enjoy!
AAC 1st Round
#5 Memphis vs. #12 Tulane
Tulane has lost 20 straight games and didn’t win a single conference game. Memphis moves on.
#6 Wichita State vs. #11 East Carolina
Wichita State has won 9 of their last 11 games in order to turn their season from 8-11 into 17-13 . With two of those wins coming over East Carolina, you can expect a 3rd as the Shockers try to stay hot and move onto the next round.
#7 Tulsa vs. #10 SMU
You need to get a magnifying glass in order to see these differences between these team’s numbers. You need to look at the overall record and conference record in order to see the differences. Tulsa may have more wins, but they lost to SMU by 20 this season. They’ll avenge that loss and beat SMU.
#8 South Florida vs. #9 UConn
South Florida doesn’t have the ability to shoot as well as UConn can, but they’re better defensively and on the glass. I think that’s what will be able to power them to a victory in the 1st round.
ACC 2nd Round
#1 Virginia vs. #8 NC State
After coming back from 16 points down against Clemson, NC State has to play Virginia. I think that after such a stressful game and Virginia being fresh that the Cavaliers will take care of business. I am weary that after a wild comeback like that, that NC State might ride a wave of emotion and make it close.
#2 UNC vs. #7 Louisville
UNC has finished this season extremely hot by winning their last 7 games. A 79-70 win over Duke to finish the season solidified their 2 seed for this tournament. They also have an ability to score so easily. They average 86.6 points per game. They’re also very close to playing for a 1 seed in the most important tournament. They win this game and will move on.
#3 Duke vs. #6 Syracuse
The season series between these teams this year was very interesting. Syracuse went to Cameron Indoor and beat Duke. When the Blue Devils went to the Carrier Dome, Syracuse held a lead at halftime and eventually lost by 10. With no indication if Zion will play, Syracuse has the ability to win. Especially since they did with Zion in the lineup. I think Syracuse wins this game and Duke will continue it’s struggles with Zion out.
#4 Florida State vs. #5 Virginia Tech
Less than 10 days ago these two teams met in Tallahassee. At halftime of that game, the Seminoles were trailing 33-19. They stormed back and eventually won in overtime. Virginia Tech shot more efficiently while Florida State somehow held on. Florida State shoots better in this game and wins.
Atlantic 10 2nd Round
#5 George Mason vs. #12 George Washington
In a battle of George’s, we have one team that is talented and one that had a tougher season. George Washington is coming off a win in round 1 despite their not so friendly numbers. While George Mason still reminds us of our childhood with their incredible run in the early 2000’s. I’m not sure if they have that in them, but if they do it’ll start with this win.
#6 St. Louis vs. #11 Richmond
St. Louis shoots 6% worse than the Spiders from the floor as a team. However, they get about 11 more rebounds a night than Richmond does. The defense and rebounding ability of St. Louis will lead them to victory.
#7 Duquesne vs. #10 St. Joseph’s
In this game, St. Joe’s is favored by 1.5 per Vegas. Oddly enough, they went 13-18 this season when Duquesne went 19-12. Duquesne will find a way to win this game and show Vegas who the better team is.
#8 Rhode Island vs. #9 La Salle
In a more disappointing season for Rhode Island, they sit deeply seeded in the Atlantic 10. I still think they’re extremely talented and can make a run. They’re a better shooting team than La Salle and will be able to flex that muscle and use it to win.
Big East Quarterfinal
#1 Villanova vs. #8 Providence
Villanova went 22-9 this season, but it felt like a more disappointing season. But the calendar says March and Jay Wright will have his team ready. Villanova moves on.
#2 Marquette vs. #7 St. John’s
Marquette had an incredible season that ended with an incredible collapse. They sat at 23-4 with 4 to go and as I mentioned, they dropped all 4 games. St. John’s beat Marquette in both games this season. I think St. John’s wins again and people really question Marquette’s ability.
#3 Seton Hall vs. #6 Georgetown.
Georgetown scores more a night on average, but they also give up more. Georgetown rebounds a little better. However, Seton Hall ended the season on wins over Villanova and Marquette. I think that instilled confidence in how good Seton Hall is and they want another shot at either of those teams and a shot for an at-large bid in the tournament.
#4 Xavier vs. #5 Creighton
Both of these teams have similar numbers, but Creighton plays a little better defense. Both teams shoot over 47% from the floor and have a lot of offensive ability. Creighton rides a 5 game win streak into the tournament and they’ll make it 6 in a row today.
Big Sky Quarterfinal
#1 Montana vs. #9 Sacramento State
Montana does everything better. They win.
#2 Northern Colorado vs. #7 Southern Utah
Northern Colorado beat Southern Utah 70-53 in the final game of the season. Expect a similar score.
#3 Eastern Washington vs. #6 Montana State
These teams split the season series. Montana State’s ability to put up a lot of points and shoot better will lead them to an upset of Eastern Washington.
#4 Weber State vs. #5 Portland State
Weber State puts up 80 points a night and shoots 6% better than Portland State. They play just as good as defense and will roll into the semifinal.
Big West Quarterfinal
#1 UC-Irvine vs. #8 UC-Riverside
Irvine has won 13 straight. Make it 14.
#4 Hawai’i vs. #5 Long Beach State
Long Beach State has won 5 straight games headed into the conference tournament. They’ll look to avenge 2 losses to Hawai’i earlier this season. I know they’re hot, but Hawai’i has been talented recently and they’ll win this game and will look to try to get back to the tournament.
#3 Cal State-Fullerton vs. #6 UC-Davis
Fullerton shoots better, rebounds better, and will win this game.
#2 UC-Santa Barbara vs. #7 Cal State-Northridge
Santa Barbara has won 21 games, Northridge 13. Santa Barbara is better and will win.
Big 10 2nd Round
#5 Maryland vs. #13 Nebraska
Nebraska is riddled with injuries. Maryland is talented and beat Nebraska twice this season. They’ll do it again with better shooting and rebounding.
#6 Iowa vs. #11 Illinois
Iowa has struggled recently. It’s tough to want to pick them. My gut tells me to pick Illinois. However, I’m going for accuracy here and Iowa is the better team and could snap out of it in a big way. Iowa wins, but don’t be surprised if they don’t.
#7 Minnesota vs. #10 Penn State
Penn State has won 4 of their last 5. They can absolutely suffocate you on defense. I think there is an upset here in this bracket and I’m most confident in picking Penn State for an upset in this round of the Big 10.
#8 Ohio State vs. #9 Indiana
Ohio State will get their leading scorer back for this game. I don’t think it makes a difference. Indiana has won 4 straight games, including huge upsets of Wisconsin and Michigan State. This team is wildly talented and might finally be playing to its potential. Indiana moves on.
Big 12 Quarterfinal
#1 Kansas State vs. #8 TCU
10 days ago these teams met in Fort Worth. Kansas State won by 12. Kansas State will be missing a key player in this game and possibly for the weekend due to a foot injury. We’ll see if they are able to beat this TCU team again. I think they will.
#2 Texas Tech vs. #7 West Virginia
Texas Tech’s defense has kept its opponents to under 60 points night all season. While their offense shoots 47% from the field. This team is dangerous. They’ve won 9 straight coming into this tournament and will make it 10 today.
#3 Kansas vs. #6 Texas
Kansas has finally lost its grip on the Big 12… Or has it? No they didn’t win the regular season title, but don’t think that they might not be able to win this tournament. They’re very good. They’ll win a nail bitter against Texas.
#4 Baylor vs. #5 Iowa State
Both teams have dropped 3 straight games. In the season series, Baylor took both matches. Iowa State will try to out shoot them, but Baylor’s defense will limit them again and move onto the next round.
#1 Old Dominion vs. #8 Louisiana Tech
ODU was able to win 23 games overall and 13 in conference play by only scoring 67 points a game and giving up 61. They don’t shoot that well overall, but they do have a very talented team that will move to the next round.
#2 Western Kentucky vs. #10 North Texas
Western Kentucky is wildly talented. North Texas is extremely talented as well. By the numbers, North Texas seems to have the better defense, but Western Kentucky beat Wisconsin earlier this season and that’s a defining win. The Hilltoppers will topple North Texas and win.
#3 Southern Mississippi vs. #6 Marshall
Marshall has a 6 game win streak. Southern Miss will cut that streak off with great defense, shooting, and rebounding. Southern Miss will move on.
#4 UTSA vs. #5 UAB
In a toss up of talent and numbers, my gut tells me to pick UAB to avenge a loss about 10 days ago to UTSA. UAB will move on.
#1 Buffalo vs. #8 Akron
Buffalo is really good. Buffalo moves on.
#2 Toledo vs. #7 Northern Illinois
Toledo’s defense and team basketball will help them get win number 26 this season. It doesn’t hurt that they also shoot 45% from the field. By beating Northern Illinois, Toledo will get their 6th straight win as well.
#3 Bowling Green vs. #11 Ball State
Bowling Green has won 20 games this season. They also grab about 41 rebounds a night. That’s what will lead them to victory.
#4 Kent State vs. #5 Central Michigan
This game will be a battle of 22 win teams. Central Michigan has slightly better number in the categories that aren’t deadlocked. They’re ability to put points on the board and do it efficiently will be what leads them to victory in what will probably be a close game.
#3 NC Central vs. #11 Delaware State
NC Central shoots 10% better than Delaware State from the field. NC Central will win.
#4 Howard vs. #5 Bethune-Cookman
Howard swaggers into this conference tournament on a 4 game win streak. Their ability to score almost at will is going to be the difference in this game. It will be a barn burner and Howard will come out victorious.
Mountain West Quarterfinal
#1 Nevada vs. #8 Boise State
Nevada only gives up 66 points a night and they score 81. They’re the Gonzaga of this conference. Wolfpack move on.
#2 Utah State vs. #7 New Mexico
Utah State has won 7 straight games. They score lot, rebound well, play great defense, and do everything well. They’ll move on.
#3 Fresno State vs. #6 Air Force
In late February Fresno State lost back to back games against Air Force and Nevada. Since then they won their last 3 games including a 121-81 BEAT DOWN of San Jose State. The defense that Fresno State plays and their better defensive ability than Air Force is the reason they’ll win this game.
#4 San Diego State vs. #5 UNLV
UNLV has won 2 straight games. SDSU has lost 2 straight. However, SDSU won both meetings against UNLV. They seem to have the Rebels’ number this season and I think they’ll be able to continue to have it with a win today.
#1 Washington vs. #8 USC
People forget that only a couple years ago Washington won 7 total games with Markelle Fultz. Now they’ve won 24 games and have the 1 seed. It will be Washington’s defense that allows the to beat USC who has better team averages on the offensive end. Huskies to the semifinal.
#2 Arizona State vs. #7 UCLA
UCLA isn’t the UCLA it used to be. The Sun Devils will take care of business.
#3 Utah vs. #6 Oregon
Oregon had a tough first half of conference play. They started 6-8 and then rattled off 4 straight wins to go to 10-8. A convincing win in the first round makes me confident that they can keep this momentum going and will beat Utah like they did in their single meeting earlier this season.
#4 Oregon State vs. #5 Colorado
We have the classic 4-5 too close to call matchup. Colorado did lose the single meeting between these teams this season. However, Colorado ended the season on a 3 game win streak and with last night’s win made it 4. I think they make it 5 today.
SEC 2nd Round
#5 Auburn vs. #12 Missouri
Auburn is the better team. It’s not too close to call. Better in every part of the game.
#6 Mississippi State vs. #11 Texas A&M
The last time Mississippi State took the court the beat this Texas A&M team 92-81. Suring the season, the Bulldogs were ranked. They’re an extremely talented team who will beat the Aggies again.
#7 Ole Miss vs. #10 Alabama
Ole Miss lost 3 straight and won their regular season finale. Alabama lost 3 straight to end the year. Ole Miss’ numbers are better overall, but they did get beaten by Alabama earlier in the season. I think that loss gets avenged and the Rebels get the win.
#8 Florida vs. #9 Arkansas
The last 5 games have been totally flipped for these teams. Arkansas lost 2 then ended with winning 3 straight. Florida won 2 and then have dropped their last 3. I think Arkansas wins this game and is able to out pace Florida who doesn’t even score 70 points a night on average.
Southland 2nd Round
#3 Southeastern Louisiana vs. #7 Central Arkansas
The season series was split between these teams this season. Central Arkansas is currently on a 3 game win streak while SELA had a 3 game win streak snapped in the regular season finale. I think Central Arkansas is able to put the ball in the basket better than SELA can. They’ll be able to force the tempo and get the upset and stay hot.
#4 New Orleans vs. #5 Lamar
Lamar continued to stay hot and won yesterday. They held a 10 point lead that Houston Baptist later shortened, but couldn’t overcome. Lamar will out shoot New Orleans and win their 10th straight game and head to the semifinal.
Sun Belt 2nd Round
#5 Louisiana vs. #8 South Alabama
Louisiana averages 82 points a night, but gives up 80. South Alabama scores 73 and gives up 72. Louisiana will rebound better and will outscore South Alabama. They’ll be the first to 70 and the victors.
#6 Coastal Carolina vs. #7 UL-Monroe
These two teams have wildly similar numbers. During the season, UL-Monroe lost both games against Coastal Carolina. They will avenge those losses and will head to the next round of conference tournament play.
#1 New Mexico State vs. #8 Chicago State
3 is the magic number. It’ the percent chance Chicago State has to win AND it’s the number of games they won all year. NMSU moves on with ease.
#2 Utah Valley vs.#7 UMKC
Utah Valley shoots 48% from the floor. UMKC doesn’t. Utah Valley has won 7 in a row. UMKC has won 1 after they had dropped 4 in a row. They’ll drop this one and Utah Valley will move on.
#3 Grand Canyon vs. #6 Seattle
The regular season finale was a matchup of these teams. Seattle beat GCU at home in overtime. I believe Seattle will be able to beat GCU again because they’ve won 3 in a row and seem to be hot while GCU has lost 2 in a row coming into this one.
#4 UT- Rio Grande vs. #5 Cal State- Bakersfield
Bakersfield has lost 5 in a row. Rio Grande hasn’t. In a toss up of a matchup, I’ll take the higher seeded team and hotter team.
There are going to be 62 winners today. How many will we have?