NCAA Regional Semi-Finals: Previews and Predictions (Will the Madness Continue)?

Sweet 16 Predictions!

 

(11) Loyola (IL) vs. (7) Nevada

This is a matchup nobody predicted. Both teams got here on heart and determination. They both had to overcome sizeable deficits to win their first two games. Nevada was to me a top 25 team most of the season. They were largely overlooked. The Wolf Pack is one of the best shooting teams left in the tournament. Loyola will have to play well on the defensive side of the ball if they want to advance. During the regular season, Loyola won at Florida, then in the tournament beat, Miami, and Tennessee. I think the Ramblers will advance to the elite eight.

Loyola 68  Nevada 67

(7) Texas A&M vs. (3) Michigan

The Wolverines came into the tournament perhaps the hottest team in college basketball.  Texas A&M was hot and cold the last half of the season. In the first week of the tournament, the Aggies returned to the form they had displayed at the start of the season. Michigan did not play particularly well in the first two rounds, but looked like they may have a little destiny on their side in a buzzer-beating win over the Houston Cougars. I think the Aggies are a more talented team. But the destiny driven Wolverrines might give you pause when picking this game.

Texas A&M 77  Michigan 75

(9) Kansas State vs. (5) Kentucky

Will Jarred Vanderbilt play for Kentucky? Will Dean Wade play for Kansas State? Too me those are the two biggest questions entering this game. In the end, this game will come down to whether or not Kansas State can shoot the ball well enough to win. I don’t think they can, but if they have a healthy Wade, they’ll give Kentucky some problems. 

Kentucky 71  Kansas State 60

(9) Florida State vs. (4) Gonzaga

Gonzaga is lead by one best coaches in college basketball. Mark Few has coached up his  Bulldogs to the point were they’ve improved as much over the season as any team in college basketball. On the other hand, Florida State has been wildily inconsistent. Nuff said.

Gonzaga 82  Florida State 71

(5) Clemson vs. (1) Kansas

The Clemson Tigers have been vastly underrated all year. This fact was shown when a lot of people picked Clemson to lose in the first round. Those critics of the Tigers were quieted when Clemson ran Auburn out of the building. You have to love Clemson for freeing us up from listening to Charles Barkley talk about his Auburn Tigers. Kansas doesn’t have the star power of previous years, but the Jayhawks are a well-coached team. I like Clemson in the upset here.

Clemson 82  Kansas 81

(5) West Virginia vs. (1) Villanova

Villanova is the best team left in this tournament.  They’re are just to good on both sides of the ball for West Virginia.

Villanova 80  West Virginia 67

(11) Syracuse vs. Duke (2)

The Cuse, in my opinion, didn’t even belong in this tournament. They’ve proved me wrong. Their problem against Duke will be that the Blue Devils have seen the Syracuse defense before. Coach K will know how to deal with it.

Duke 79  Syracuse 72

(3) Texas Tech vs. (2) Purdue

Purdue lost Isaac Haas. This is huge, but the Boilermakers are still a big-time threat to make a run to the Final four. I think Texas Tech will win a very close game because of there ability to play sound defense.

Texas Tech 75  Purdue 73

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