Sweet 16 Day 2

Last night I put up my picks for Day 1 of the Sweet 16.  I got 3 of the 4, missing only my alma mater, Mizzou.  I’ll call it a good day.  Also, it’s time to talk about Villanova as a contender for this tournament.  They’ll get a Pittsburgh team who hasn’t impressed me thus far. As of right now, I think Villanova will win that game and it may not even be close.  ESPN keeps talking about Duke’s historic futility last night and most of the credit has to go to the Wildcats.  They’ve sold me.

In the West region, UConn beat an upstart Purdue team.  They’re playing some excellent basketball as well.  The Huskies will be pitted against my Missouri Tigers, who halted the Memphis Tigers’ 27 game winning streak.  In fact, they hung 102 points on a team who gave up an average of 57 on the season.  It was an impressive display to say the least.  The Tigers can beat UConn if they can get Thabeet away from the basket and run him to death.  That will be an interesting clash of styles.

Now, onto tonight’s games. 

Michigan St. over Kansas.  This basically stems from the 13 point win that the Spartans already had this year. Stop Collins and Aldrich and you stop the Jayhawks.  It all sounds so easy when I type it out like that.  Actually, when I look back, Collins had 25 points and Aldrich had 14 points and 11 rebounds.  Michigan St. apparently took a different approach and held the rest of the Kansas team to 23 points.  Wow.

I have Oklahoma over Syracuse.  The Orange’s recent run of success has been very impressive.  Either way, too much Blake Griffin here.  The Big 12 gets their second Elite 8 team.

North Carolina over Gonzaga.  The Zags have been a trendy pick to win the whole thing.  Jason Whitlock has been all over them for a while now.  I had them falling to Western Kentucky in the last round, and they should have.  I just don’t think Gonzaga is that good.  Hansbrough and the Tar Heels move on.

Finally, Louisville over Arizona.  Arizona is hardly a Cinderalla, even though some people didn’t have them in the tournament.  They could possibly pull an upset here, but I think they’ll fall just short.  I’m not a huge Louisville fan, but I don’t see anyone who can beat them in their region.

So there you have them.  No upsets tonight.  If these predictions prove accurate, it will make for some very interesting Elite 8 games.  Griffin vs. Hansbrough?  Yeah, I want to see it.

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6 Responses

  1. Ha ha. Classic 17 – you wouldn’t pick the Jayhawks if they were playing Brainerd Jr. High School!

    The Hawks will play well against MSU. Coach Self is 7 and 1 when playing teams following an earlier loss against them. They will be well prepared for MSU. It will be a back and forth game with KU winning by 4 to advance to play again on Sunday.

    KU is an entirely different team than the one that took the court at MSU after spanking Tennessee a week earlier. Three freshmen and two sophomores will do that early in the season.

    In between those games, KU also beat Siena, who gave Louisville all they could handle. KU also avenged a 2 point loss at Paige Arena with a 25 point shellacking of MU just 30 days later.

    Hanging 102 on someone is pretty cool.. but plastering an opponent by 25 leaves quite a hickey. And don’t forget, MU gave up 91 points… so this wasn’t a strong defensive showing by either club.

    There is a lot of pressure on MU. They have NEVER been to a Final Four. Ever. That could loom large, very large.

    I have MU meeting KU in the Final Four for the season rubber match. MU took care of business in fine fashion against a Memphis team that looked good in their conference… need I say more?

    KU will need to take care of business tonight. Our two main horses have played exceedingly well. I expect the supporting cast will come to play tonight as well.

    Rock Chalk!

  2. Just for the record, I wouldn’t deem a 7-point loss as a spanking… especially considering Tennessee outscored Kansas in the second half… actually if you take out the first 7 minutes 27 seconds of that game, Tennessee wins it by 9 points… and I’ll chalk those first minutes up to the fact that Tennessee is a young team that wasn’t prepared for an atmosphere like the one in Allen Fieldhouse. That’s all part of the game and that’s what comes with having home court advantage, I’m just saying that by no means would I consider Kansas to have dominated that game… they simply dominated the first seven-and-a-half minutes.

  3. I had KU making it this far and I certainly think they can beat MSU, I have it picked in some brackets.

    I appreciate you attempting to flame a Mizzou-Kansas argument, it’s very admirable of you, however completely unnecessary.

    My only request the next time is that you at least be original. Calling Mizzou Arena “Paige” is not original. Not even a little bit.

    So to sum it up, please don’t troll for arguments, but if you must, please at least make it entertaining for people to read.

  4. Well… it was KU’s game to win, being up 5 with three minutes to go. Turnovers down the stretch doomed any opportunity to close out the game with a win. I thought four points would win the game. It ended up being five in the other direction. The supporting players needed to step up tonight and that didn’t happen.

    However, it’s been a fantastic season and one that has exceeded even the wildest of expectations. Not bad for a team of freshman and sophomores.

    We’ll pull for the remaining Big 12 teams to finish strong and look forward to Midnight Madness in October!

    Rock Chalk Rocky Top!

  5. Ever sense the Vols lost in round one I’ve just been pulling for whatever I’ve had on my bracket… which means (sorry, Bryan) that I want Michigan St to beat Louisville, UConn to beat Mizzou, UNC to beat Oklahoma and I had Duke winning the East region… so I guess I’ll pull for Nova.

  6. I agree with you 100%. I don’t think Michigan St. really deserved to win that game at all.

    Nothing to be ashamed of with KU’s season. I think even the most optimistic person didn’t see all this coming. Bodes well for your future, I think.

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