Well, it’s that time of year again. In my opinion it’s the best time in all of sports, when 68 teams get the opportunity to step up, beat their opponent, and be callled the champion of college basketball. The NCAA tournament has turned into one of the most popular sporting events in the world and along with it come people from all over the world filling out brackets for bragging rights (and money) and to see if they can pick the correct winners, upsets, and ultimately the champion. Oddly enough, die hard sports fans, your mother who’s never watched a game, or an infant all have about the same chance of picking a perfect bracket, and more often than not the two latter choices beat you and won’t let you forget.
This year, as always, I created a bracket and I’d like to share it with you even if I only get 50% of my picks right. I’ll be updating this page after each round of games with my correct picks, horrible picks, and some analysis of the biggest games of the tourney. If you’d like to join my group you can go here, I’d love to see how some of you stack up against me. There are just two days until the first round starts, and I know I will be useless once it does.
Round 1…Err Round 2 results
Well, the second round of the NCAA tournament has finished and my bracket has more red on it that my college exams, and thats a lot. All in all there were 9 “Upsets” in the first two days and while all of them weren’t shocking there were still plenty of unbelievable games and quite a few that were close throughout.
1 vs. 16 seeds:
One seeds generally walk right thorugh the first game of the conference against the 16 sees but this year two of the higher seeds had chance to make history. Gonzaga, who were criticized by many for even getting a top seed beat Southern by just 6 points but the game was much closer even within the final minute of the game. And Kansas who has been known to not show up in the second half of the season let Sun Belt conference champion Western Kentucky hang around but ultimatly won by 9.
12 seeds dominate
3 0ut of the 4 12 v 5 matchup’s ended in upsets as Cal, Oregon, and Mississippi State all beat 5 seeds. While you look at those teams and Oregon and Mississippi are probably not seeded correctly they still technically pulled the upset.
Incorrect Picks (Bold are winners)
Colorado St. (8) v. Missouri (9) – Missouri just couldn’t catch up most of the game, a team that was ranked 15th in the country at one point this season continued to be be inconstant (a theme in college basketball).
Menphis (6) v. St. Mary’s (11) – This was a big upset pick of mine that just didn’t work, the game was close all the way but the Gaels couldn’t knock down enough shots.
Creighton (7) v Cincinnatti (10) – This was a very close game all the way though but Creighton hit their free throws all night and especially down the stretch to put the game away. I thought Cinci would be more physical and show superiority but that did not happen.
Pittsburgh (8) v. Wichita State (9) – I hadn’t seen Pitt play much this year but I thought along with many others that they would just push around WSU on the way to a win and it was in fact the other way around. This game was not close at all and now Wichita has the opportunity to knock off Gonzaga.
Kansas State (4) v. La Salle (13) – La Salle looked really good in the play in game and I should have picked them after that but thought K ST would be able to take care of them. The game looked done after the first half but the Wildcats stormed back to take a lead before La Salle ultimately won by 2.
New Mexico (3) v. Harvard (14) - Maybe the biggest upset of the tourney so far, Linsanity’s alma matter Harvard went out and beat New Mexico by six and shattered millions of brackets.
UCLA (6) v. Minnesota (11) - For most this was an easy upset pick but I thought UCLA would get it together and win, I guess Shabazz Muhammed wasn’t on his way to the NBA yet as he showed up but the rest of the team did not.
San Diego State (7) v. Oklahoma (10) – I picked OU to win, really like Irby but they couldn’t get him the ball in the second half. Jamaal Franklin scored 21 to lead State to a 15 point lead.
Georgetown (2) v. Florida Gulf Coast (15) – HUGE UPSET. FGC who had already beat Miami this season took it to the Hoyas winning by 10 in a game that wasn’t that close. Otto Porter couldnt get going and FGC wanted it more. Georgetown was a final 4 pick of mine so that ruined my bracket.
NC State (8) v. Temple (9) – Temple beats a NC State team that I picked because of seeing them play and seeing how good they were at one point this season. State had a chance in the end but bad shots really hurt them.
UNLV (5) v. Cal (12) – Cal snuck in and beat UNLV in a rare rematch of teams that played in the regular season. Both games were close but UNLV won the last by 1 point. Cal wins by 3 and becomes another 12 seed to wi.
Some of my good picks
Oklahoma State (5) v. Oregon (12) - Oregon won the Pac-12, I thought they were the beetter team and they showed it winning by 13. I think They are a sweet 16 team.
Wisconson (5) v. Ole Miss (12) - Ole Miss is probably the worst seeded team at a 12, they won the SEC and played good all season. Wisconsin is very good but Marshall Henderson put the team on his back and carried the Rebels to a W. Love him or hate him Henderson is entertaining.
Notre Dame (7) v. Iowa State (10) – Iowa State should have beat Kansas twice this season so they have what it takes to beat good teams and I’m not sure Notre Dame was good. They win by 18.
Overall this was a crazy round of 64 and I think the round of 32 will be very good as well. While my bracket isn’t anywhere close to perfect I can at least say nobody out of 3 Million + are perfect on ESPN’s bracket challenge. Stay tuned to see how many sweet 16 teams I picked on Monday!