Well here we are, everyone’s favorite time of year MARCH MADNESS. The vibe all around the small towns buzzing and first ever tournament births or even tournament birth droughts coming to an end, or will Duke’s freshman trio crack under pressure against an underrated opponent? All those questions are about to be answered throughout the next month where a new champion will be named and of course the yearly underdog.
The fact that there’s 3 of the 4 #1 seed are coming out of the ACC which just shows how deep the ACC is this season so if you’re like me and your team didn’t make it to the tournament from the ACC (Miami) don’t feel bad you were the worst of the best. Here are some possible upsets to look out for.
12 Liberty vs 5 Mississippi St.
Atlantic Sun Champions Liberty Flames blew through the tournament and is a dangerous 12 seed with a slow paced offense but yet a balanced attack and when they get hot from the 3pt line can be dangerous especially against a MSST team that hasn’t beaten many “good” teams this season when they play a team like Liberty that can match their intensity could be a blowout Liberty win in my mind.
11 Saint Mary’s vs 6 Villanova
The Saint Mary Gaels defeated Gonzaga in the WCC Championship and could be riding that momentum into the tournament against defending champions Villanova Wildcats. In the tournament championship Saint Mary’s held Gonzaga’s high powered offense (88.8 ppg) to 47 points and if they can do the same to a Villanova team who has been up and down this season since winning the national championship last season, Saint Mary’s should be able to advance from the first round and knock out the defending champs.
12 Murray Sate vs 5 Marquette
Led by NBA Draft prospect and top 3 point guard Ja Morant the Murray State Racers are underdog by seed but have a very solid chance to beat a Marquette if Ja Morant can keep up the pace he has had all season there’s no team with the defense in this tournament to keep up with them but this team lives and dies by the play of their star point guard so if the sophomore can keep his team above water against a Marquette team that has been battle tested playing Villanova twice this season and beating them once, Murray State should move onto the Round of 32.
14 Georgia State vs 3 Houston
Georgia State’s head to head record against tournament teams has been everything but impressive but when it comes to tournament play teams tend to heat up and when it’s win or go home and you have a player like Devin Mitchell who can light it up from downtown down the stretch (42.9% 3pt shooting) and you speed it up against Houston you can create a run towards the end of the game when it’s needed the most and can move on to the Round of 32.
16 Gardner Webb vs 1 Virginia
Well…we all know what happened to Virginia last year and if Kyle Guy and company don’t step up we could have another 16 seed winner.
Alex Mesa, 16