Wednesday Night Hoops: Madness Addition

 

So here we are after a wild first weekend of March Madness. It was unreal as usual with incredible upsets, wild comebacks, and immaculate performances. Look for this coming weekend to be just as good as we battle to get down to the Final 4. Lets quickly preview each game this weekend for our quick hoops round up:

#1 Kansas vs #4 Maryland

Not an unexpected matchup here and shouldn’t be an unexpected outcome. We saw Maryland almost fall to South Dakota State in the first round. They have been trending down all season and outside of Melo Trimble, have very little firepower. Kansas on the other hand has been as dominating as can be so look for a balanced attack to run through the Terrapins.  Pick : Kansas Jayhawks

#3 Miami vs #2 Villanova

This is one of the games of the weekend. Both of these teams can play, albeit a little differently from each other. The Hurricanes rely on an uber-athletic front court stabilized by the grizzled senior Angel Rodriquez. The Wildcats rely on volume three point shooting and a rabid guard-centric defense that results in steals. If Angel Rodriquez plays well and in control, Miami takes it. But I don’t see Ryan Arcidiacono and company coming up short again, not after all of these tough tournaments before. Pick: Villanova Wildcats

#1 Oregon vs #4 Duke

The country is learning about the Oregon Ducks. After playing in late games on the West coast, Oregon is finally getting primetime matchups. The Ducks can play, and score. But what they can struggle with is defense. They are playing a flawed Duke team. The Blue Devils are incredibly thin and if Grayson Allen or Brandon Ingram struggle, they have no where else to go. But there is a lot of resilience in the Duke bunch which is why I’m taking them to knock out the first #1 seed in this tournament. Pick: Duke Blue Devils

#3 Texas A&M vs #2 Oklahoma

Wow did Texas A&M arguably pulled out the greatest comeback in college basketball history. But Northern Iowa doesn’t have Buddy Hield on the floor. Hield will be the difference in this game as he has been the difference throughout the year for the Sooners. Pick: Oklahoma Sooners

#11 Gonzaga vs #10 Syracuse

No one saw this game coming. But we should have. Gonzaga has been good all year and is horribly underseeded. Syracuse played 9 games without Coach Boeheim. So honestly both these teams are extremely talented. I’m gonna take the Zags here because of their excellent big man, Domantas Sabonis, who will be able to break down their legendary 2-3 zone. The Zags advance as the last remaining “cinderella”. Pick: Gonzaga Bulldogs

#1 Virginia vs #3 Iowa State

Don’t really know much about either of these teams. Wasn’t happy with Virginia getting a #1, but so far they’ve earned it. Iowa State has had a good year too, especially in a tough Big 12. But just feel that the ultra-disciplined Cavaliers have this game wrapped up by halftime. Pick: Virginia Cavaliers

#1 North Carolina vs #5 Indiana

This is the game stepped in tradition. Both of these programs have more banners in their rafters than entire Division 1 conferences. The Tar Heels can play led by the do-it-all Brice Johnson. But Indiana is hot right now with Yogi Ferrell leading the charge. Just have a gut feeling that this will be the closest and wildest game of the Sweet 16 but Indiana will win late. Pick: Indiana Hoosiers

#6 Notre Dame vs #7 Wisconsin

Notre Dame is a solid team. And they will put up a fight. But Wisconsin’s still got that magic from last year. I’m guessing another late buzzer beater from Bronson Koenig. Or at least I can hope. Pick: Wisconsin Badgers

koenig2-2014.jpg

 

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