#3 Marquette vs #2 Miami
While the seedings show that this may be a close game, the gap in talent between Marquette and Miami is much larger than it seems. Marquette has overachieved all season and is very luck to have come away with nail biting victories over both Davidson and Marquette. While Miami had to grind out out against Illinois, I still feel like they can win this by double digits. If Marquette keeps it close, watch out for Vander Blue, who's can take over a game late.
Prediction: Miami 72 Marquette 61
#6 Arizona vs #2 Ohio State
Thanks to Aaron Craft, Ohio State (and my bracket) are still alive. After squeeking by hot shooting Iowa State they find themselves in a tough matchup with Arizona who seem to be finding their rhythm at the right time. Having easily dispatched Belmont and Harvard they find themselves with a much tougher matchup against an Ohio State team who has a ton of big time players. I think Ohio State takes this one, it will be close throughout though.
Predition: Ohio State 62 Arizona 58
#4 Syracuse vs #1 Indiana
Indiana can count themselves luck to still be playing after a late rally gave them the edge over upset minded Temple. The matchup here will be Syracuse's zone defense trying to contain Cody Zeller's inside game as well as Indiana's ability to shoot the three well. While Indiana is one of the top three point shooting teams in the country, Syracuse is no pushover either. They got hot from the field early vs Montana and well as vs California. They can't afford to go on a scoring drought like they did against Cali if they want any shot in this game. I feel like 'Cuse can get out to an early lead against the Hoosiers and not make the same mistakes that Temple made late in the game. "Cuse takes this one in an upset.
Prediction: Syracuse 74 Indiana 70
#13 La Salle vs #9 Wichita State
Whoever had this in their bracket, complete respect to you. I had both of them out in the first round but I'm going to give the slight advantage to La Salle in this one. Wichita rode their hot shooting to 14 three pointers against Gonzaga and were able to pull off the upset. I can't see them getting that sort of contribution here. La Salle plays a much smaller lineup and I think their athleticism gives them the slight advantage here.
Prediction: La Salle 64 Withita State 60
#1 Louisville vs #10 Oregon
No one has been playing better basketball than Louisville over these past two months and its tough to see Oregon putting a stop to it. Undervalued at a 12 seed, Oregon made easy work of 5th seeded Oklahoma State and 4th seeded St.Louis. They face a different kind of monster in Louisville who has 31 steals in their first two tournament games. Over 40 minutes I cant see Oregon pulling off the upset. The cards take this one easy.
Prediction: Louisville 72 Oregon 58
#4 Michigan vs #1 Kansas
Kansas, who I put in my championship game, while still in the tournament, haven't looked like the dominant #1 seed that they are capable of. Barley putting away Western Kentucky, they also trailed by 9 at halftime against UNC before finally putting it together in the second half. Jeff Withey is going to need to play big in this game. If he gets into early foul trouble expect Kansas to be in big trouble. Michigan easily took care of fan favorite VCU and their Havoc defense easily in their last game. While my gut says Michigan on this one, my heart says Kansas. McLemore needs to show up for Kansas for them to pull this one out.
Prediction: Kansas 72 Michigan 71
#3 Michigan State vs #2 Duke
I dont know what it is about March that brings the best out of the Spartans but once again they are rolling through their opposition. Their first real test comes against a Duke team who doesn't seem to be playing in top gear at the moment. They key for Duke will be Ryan Kelly who hits about 45 percent of his 3 pointers but is 0 for his last 10. If he plays like he did against Creighton, expect Michigan State to pull this one out.
Prediction: Duke 62 Michigan State 60
#15 Florida Gulf Coast vs #3 Florida
I honestly think the Gator fans are going to be rooting for the Eagles in this one. The story of the tournament, maybe even the story of the year, is America's team right now. While on paper this seems like an easy one for the Gators, the same can be said for FGCU's two previous games in which they came out and shocked the Hoya's and Aztec's. The Eagles need to continue to play free. If the Gators are in a position where they are chasing the game and start to press FGCU, thats where they can completely destroy you as they did with SDSU and Gtown. The Gators are big favorites in this one (12.5 points), but screw it, I'm not letting this team make me look stupid again. The Eagles keep riding that wave of emotion and shock the country....again.
Prediction: Florida Gulf Coast 81 Florida 73
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