PJN: Tourney Go Time!

March 18, 2008



    I’ve had a couple requests to breakdown the brackets before things get goin’, so I figured I better get on this. I figured I’d just go region through region, and give you all places where I think upsets could happen, as well as give you who I think will play in the regional finals and then my Final Four picks:

    We’ll start things off in the West as that’s where I’m at and this, in my opinion is the easiest region to predict. I don’t know if Dan Guerrero has a ridiculous amount of pull since he’s on the committee or what, but UCLA received by far the best path towards San Antonio. I think UCONN would present the biggest test for the Bruins, but UCONN struggles playing against solid, fundamental teams, which is why I’m picking Drake to play UCLA in the Sweet Sixteen. I got Baylor beating Purdue in the 6-11 game and Xavier coming out of the bottom half of that bracket for a UCLA Xavier regional final in Phoenix, with UCLA cruising the FF.

    Headin’ down South it gets a little fuzzy for me. The hottest team in the South region is Pitt or UCLA’s JV team, however you want view them. In my heart, I see Pitt makin a run to San Antonio and gettin a rematch with the varsity squad. I don’t know if I can go that far with a true prediction though. I do like them gettin to the regional semi’s though. As far as all you Oregon fans, get ready for a beat down come round 2. The Oregon v MSU game should be interesting as you have two pretty talented teams, but the basketball would be better if you had Ruggedly coaching one squad and me coachin’ the other, seriously. I think Oregon gets outta round one before you see a Tajuan Porter vs Derrick Rose match-up, you tell me who wins that one. In the bottom half of the South I like Saint Mary’s over The U in the first round with chalk everywhere else and Texas coming out to face Memphis in the regional finals with Texas going on to face UCLA for the second time this year. I do love Pitt though, really.

    Movin’ on to the Midwest, the Kent State, Kansas’ game in round two could be very interesting. In the end I think Kansas just has too much, but it should in the very least be an entertaining game. I really liked Vandy a couple weeks ago but right now I think they have to be on upset alert. They’ve lost 3 of 5 and are playin’ a Siena team who has already beat Stanford this year (although Brook Lopez was still ineligible, minor detail). Either way, Clemson is playing at a really high level right now and they too should make for a very interesting match-up with KU in the Sweet Sixteen. At the bottom of the bracket I really like both USC and Wisconsin. Both teams are playin really well right now and this game could end up bein played in the 50’s. If so, SC will have an excellent chance at winning this game as OJ Mayo will be by far the best offensive option on the floor for either team. I like Davidson a lot. The Davidson/Gonzaga match-up will be an epic mid major clash. I think Davidson gets through that, and I really think they could give G-Town a heck of a game. These guys have given UNC, Duke and UCLA all they could handle early in the year and have since won 22 straight games, that’s a team you don’t want to face. In the end I think you see a G-Town vs Wisconsin Sweet Sixteen with Wisconsin meeting Kansas in a knock down drag out regional final with KU finally getting Bill Self to a FF.

    The East is ridiculous. Straight up. I’m not a huge Tennessee fan, but how does the team with the #1 RPI and the #1 strength of schedule get ranked as the lowest #2 seed in the tourney and thus get paired with the top 1 seed? Also, how in the world can you justify giving Indiana an 8 seed? I understand they’ve lost their last two to weak opponents, but their other 5 losses on the season came to Xavier, Michigan State, UCONN, and Wisc twice. It’s also interesting to note that you have another team in Butler who is ranked in the top 10 in the polls and is a 7 seed in this bracket. That being said, I like South Alabama to upset Butler in round 1 and give Tennessee all they can handle in round 2. I tend to go with the chalk the rest of the way until the sweet sixteen where I like the ‘Ville to move on over Tennessee to meet up with Carolina in the Elite Eight with Carolina comin’ out of that beast.

    So I have three 1’s and a 2 in San Antonio. I like UCLA with a healthy Collison to beat UT and I like UNC to beat KU in an absolute classic. UCLA v UNC. Battle of the titans for sure! How hyped would this match-up be? The two Psycho T vs KLove. Collison vs Lawson. Westbrook’s stifling D vs Wayne Ellington’s smooth O. This would be an absolute classic and hey, I’m a UCLA homer, who do you think I got cuttin down the nets? UCLA wins their 12th title and all is right in the world.

That’s it for now. I hope this quenches everyone’s bracket insanity. Get at me and let me know who your sleepers and upset picks are, and who you got in San Antonio cuttin’ down the nets!

Your Boy

6 Responses to “PJN: Tourney Go Time!”

  1. Mike said

    I like Pitt, but I like them so much I have them in the final four.

    Key possible upsets Pete didn;t mention:

    West Virginia over Duke in round 2

    St. Josephs over OU in round 1

    Pitt beating both Memphis and Texas to make it to the final four

    Watch out for Georgia in round 1. They could shock Xavier. Georgia has been on a nice little run.

  2. ruggedly said

    Oregon getting bounced day 1.

    I’m very tempted to take Louisville all the way to the Finals.

    I like the Terreros and I don’t like West Virginia.

  3. Peter said

    Because of your last comment, Bob Huggins is going to hunt you down and sick a gang of his past thugs, I mean players, on you. In particular, Kenyon Martin, Nick Van Exel, and Jason Maxiel.

  4. J Evs said

    I just want to point out that Davidson Beat a Georgetown team that shot 63% for the game and was 10-18 from downtown. How would a team do that you might ask, well, Davidson turned the ball over a grad total of 4 times, compare that to 20 for the hoyas and you are left with your answer. The recipe for success is the NCAA tourney is ball control and free throws, I think we will all pay more attention to those two categories in the future. So is Davidson a fluke? I think not, the sweet shooting Stephon Curry is a force to be reckoned with. And if anyone saw WV against Duke, they know the Mountaineers are for real.

  5. ruggedly said

    Stephen Curry was shooting hot this weekend. But if that doesn’t carry over to next weekend, who does Davidson have? Wisconsin is playing some defense right now. Not that Kansas State was a force to be reckoned with, but they couldn’t get anything going against the Badgers.

    Your point is true though, Davidson is not a fluke, but at the same time, they don’t have enough magic left to make it Elite.

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