Thursday, March 21, 2013

Your (only slightly late) Ultimate Bracket!

This bracket is guaranteed to be 100% accurate, and we're delivering it to you just in time for you not to be able to use it. Let's go!

Midwest Region

The Upsets

12 Oregon over 5 Oklahoma State: A 5-12 upset is going to happen. Oregon is a good Pac-12 (that's weird to type) team that has played against good competition and isn't going to be afraid of Oklahoma State. Oklahoma State is also in a crappy conference, same as Oregon, but we think their seed is inflated a bit.

10 Cincinnati over 7 Creighton: The stumbling Bearcats will beat Creighton. Their ability to outwork the other team, especially on the boards, will be too much for the Bluejays, especially if Creighton doesn't start off shooting as well as they would hope.

3 Michigan St over 2 Duke: Because fuck Duke.


South Region



The Upsets

11 Minnesota over 6 UCLA: Big 10 over Pac-12. Easy peasy.

10 Oklahoma over 7 San Diego State: San Diego State is only good at home, and they're basically one guy, Jamaal Franklin. Oklahoma is deep and plays in a better conference.

5 VCU over 4 Michigan: Shaka Shaka Shaka!!!!!

2 Georgetown over 1 Kansas: Georgetown is a shut-down team defensively, and they have an elite scorer among elite scorers in Otto Porter. While Kansas is a solid team up and down, they have some ball handling problems, and it'll be too tough for them to overcome Georgetown's defensive prowess.

West Region



The Upsets
11 Belmont over 6 Arizona: Belmont is a snappy little team. I think they beat Kansas one year. As for Arizona, Luke Walton isn't walking through that door.

10 Iowa State over 7 Notre Dame: Iowa State is fun as hell, and Notre Dame never ceases to disappoint in the tournament.

5 Wisconsin over 4 Kansas State: Wisconsin can beat anyone, and they're coming into the tournament having beaten every great team in the stacked-ass Big 10 this year. Kansas State won't have enough to beat the Badgers.

2 Ohio State over 1 Gonzaga: Ohio State is a physical team that plays great defense, and they're arguably the best team in the best conference (Indiana would have a lot to say about that, but one could argue for Ohio State). Gonzaga played well in an extremely weak conference, and they'll be no match for a team that ran through a lot of great teams all year.


East Region




The Upsets

14 Davidson over 3 Marquette: Davidson has everything you want in a tournament team: good shooting, good free throw percentage, veteran leadership, and a hot-ass streak. They've won their last 14, and Marquette will fall victim to this very well-balanced team.

6 Butler in the Sweet 16: Butler was good before, and if we're about anything, it is not learning about this year's teams and vaguely remembering what happened in years past.

The Final Four




Why Louisville is going to win it all: Louisville has a +16 winning margin per game. They're extremely well-balanced and experienced, led by tournament veterans Gorgui Dieng, Peyton Siva, and Russ Smith. They're good inside and outside on offense and defense. They're the one team in the tournament that you can really point to and say, "I don't see a real flaw." They're 11-1 in their last 12 games, and they play in one of the toughest conferences (the Big East).

They are, by all accounts, unquestionably the best team. That doesn't necessarily mean they'll win, but every other team has a decent flaw. Georgetown and Miami are slow. Florida can't win close games. Kansas can't handle the ball. Duke hasn't quite figured out how to re-integrate Ryan Kelly yet. Ohio State is solid across the board but less talented than Lousville. Gonzaga hasn't played good teams. Indiana is coached by Dwight Schrute. Louisville has no decent flaw. They're your champion.

Upsets to watch that we didn't pick:

12 Oregon going to the Sweet 16: I like Saint Louis over Oregon because they have a good record, and also I respect them for spelling out Saint. St. is played out. Saint Louis it is.

13 South Dakota State over 4 Michigan: Michigan is stumbling mightily into the tournament, going 6-6 in their last 12, while South Dakota State is hot. They're a dangerous team because they shoot really efficiently and they take care of the ball. Michigan might just stumble their way to getting giantly upset.

5 Wisconsin going to the Elite 8: Gonzaga, in my estimation, is one of the weaker #1 seeds in recent memory. They play in a joke conference (the WCC), and they'll have a tough time against The Team That Can Beat Anyone Or Lose To Anyone, Wisconsin.

9 Wichita State going to the Sweet 16: If Wichita State can get past its first-round matchup with Pitt, they have a solid chance of beating the Zags. They rebound like hell and will be a tough out, even for #1 Gonzaga.

Happy Bracketeering!

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