Saturday, March 19, 2016

NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament First Round Recap/Second Round Preview

The teams of 64 have fallen down to a 32 and the second round gets started today. March Madness did not disappoint with some huge upsets that change the face of the bracket moving forward. The biggest upset of all was 2Michigan State falling to 15Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders. 
While a 15 seed beating a 2 seed was the biggest upset, there were plenty of other upsets to go around. I'll start around the divisions and work my way through.

Number one teams never lose, so at least there is that to hold onto, so the Kansas Jayhawks stayed in and the upset I did predict, though a small one, was 9Connecticut over 8Colorado. The UConn Huskies will face the Jayhawks tonight. I'm sticking with my pick of the Jayhawks to go all the way. 

Tomorrow Maryland will face off against another upset maker in Hawaii. The Rainbow Warriors were a 13 seed over 4 seed California. I did not see that coming. I'm choosing Hawaii to continue to surprise. 

Continuing down the bracket, I managed to predict the 11Wichita State Shockers beating 6Arizona but I have Miami making it to the elite eight after they beat 14Buffalo and take down the Shockers this afternoon in the earliest game. 

Iowa looked good in there win over Temple though the Owls took the Hawkeyes to overtime. Tomorrow Iowa will face off against a number 2 seed that did win in Villanova, who won against UNC Asheville. I think Nova will have a hard time advancing forward and my faith in 2 seeds is shaken.

The number 1 seed Oregon moved forward over 16 seed Holy Cross to face 8 seed St. Joseph's who beat 9 seed Cincinnati, which was an upset I predicted wrongly. Oregon should continue to move forward against the St. Joe Hawks. 

Below that 4 seed Duke moved forward against 13 seed UNC Wilmington and the Blue Devils will face 12 seed Yale who had another big upset over the 5 seed Baylor Bears. 

The Bulldogs face the Blue Devils in the second game this afternoon, and I'm going with Duke.

Northern Iowa, an 11 seed, beat the 6 seed Texas Longhorns to go on and face 3 seed Texas A&M, the SEC Championship runner up, who beat 14 Green Bay. I am taking the Aggies to go forward and face Oklahoma. Oklahoma plays VCU tomorrow as they did beat their 15 seed opponent in Cal St. Bakersfield. VCU upset Oregon St. but I saw that coming as the Rams have experience. 

On the other side of the bracket, the UNC Tar Heels, and a team that now has a greater to appear in the champion ship, beat FGCU from the first four. North Carolina will play 9 seed Providence who surprised me by beating 8 seed USC. UNC should go far.

The matchup below that is one I'm so excited to see with the 4 seed Kentucky Wildcats facing off against the 5 seed Indian Hoosiers. I am going to be rooting so hard for the Wildcats at around 5:15 pm today. Go Big Blue!

The ACC is a strong conference in the tournament and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish proved that by advancing over Michigan. Below that I had put a lot on the Big 12, which was why it was such a surprised when 3 seed West Virginia fell to 14 seed Stephen F Austin. 
West Virginia was another team I had in the Final Four so my bracket is already busted after the first round. I think Notre Dame will be powerful in this region. 

At the bottom of the East, the former runner up in Wisconsin moved on against Pittsburgh and the number 2 seed Xavier made it past Weber State.  I chose Wisconsin. 

This division had the most upsets in the first round and was so unpredictable. I did pick 1 seed Virginia and number 9 seed Butler to face off later today after they beat 16 seed Hampton and 8 seed Texas Tech respectively. I think Virginia will move forward and their chances are much better further on without a 2 seed to contend with. 

I didn't predict the 5 seed Purdue Boilermakers to be upset by the 12 seed Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans.
 The Trojans will face 4 seed Iowa State who beat 13 seed Iona. I'm going with Iowa State.

In the bracket below I correctly pick the upset of 11 seed Gonzaga over 6 seed Seton Hall. I also picked Utah to win against Fresno State. I think Gonzaga will continue to surprise. 

The bottom part of this bracket was full of surprises with 10 seed Syracuse upsetting 7 seed Dayton and of course Michigan State falling to Middle Tennessee.

This post clearly shows how unpredictable and crazy this tournament can be. I have had a fun time keeping up with it and I look forward to watching the next round today and tomorrow!

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