Commish Picks: Sweet Sixteen

Posted on March 24, 2011 by

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Ohio St. v. Kentucky

In picking my bracket, I have done my best in the East.  I have only missed two games (thanks George Mason and Marquette).  So without any further analysis, I’m going to rely on my bracket pick.

Final Verdict: Ohio State

Marquette v. North Carolina

Marquette has always been the one to ruin a good bracket for me.  Last year I didn’t pick them in a game and they ended up winning and sinking a team that I had going far.  This year, I was smart enough to pick them in the second round, but was incorrect in assuming they wouldn’t break my bracket again by dropping Syracuse.  However, as the saying goes, “old habits die hard.”  This is true for me as I will once again pick against Marquette.

Final Verdict: North Carolina

Duke v. Arizona

Coach K is all that and a bag of chips. So are his Duke boys. Although they have faltered before, I don't see it happening Thursday night.

A buddy of mine got on my case last week for not picking the U of A.  However, disregard that quick 5 second count from the ref and Texas is playing Duke.  Alas, U of A won and I can’t say I’m disappointed.  However, the breaks and the lucky calls end here.  Duke and Coach K are on a mission.  If Mike Krzyzewski can reach the NCAA title game he will be the sole holder of the record for most wins in NCAA basketball history (surpassing Bob Knight).  So don’t come after me if I say that in addition to having the talent edge over the Cats, Duke also has more will and motivation.

Final Verdict: Duke

UConn v. San Diego St.

As I’ve said before, SDSU has limited accomplishments on this season.  One of them is finally beating BYU after being bludgeoned in their previous two match-ups.  The other accomplishment, escaping an upset in OT with Temple.  Other than that, SDSU has beat up on chumps.  Although UConn is banged up, they’re still only one of two Big East teams to actually show up in the tournament.

Final Verdict: UConn

Kansas v. Richmond

There are just too many teams with a Cinderella feel right now. Someone has got to go.

A lot of people want to make Richmond out as some sort of Cinderella but the fact of the matter is that they beat an over-ranked Vanderbilt team (which I foretold) and then got to face a lucky Morehead State that edged out Louisville.  Richmond has not shown anything that would lead me to believe they are capable of knocking off Kansas.  Richmond is good and they’ve played good ball, no doubt about it.  But Kansas is certainly better.

Final Verdict: Kansas

VCU v. Florida St.

Speaking of Cinderellas; VCU truly shocked me in their showing against Purdue.  Florida State absolutely thumped Notre Dame.  I’m sorry VCU, I REALLY want to pick you, but Florida State absolutely torched Notre Dame, and that can’t be ignored.  Notre Dame may be over rated and the Big East may be under performing in the tournament but make no mistake the Irish are still a good team, and to embarrass them like that is amazing.

Final Verdict: Florida State

Butler v. Wisconsin

Butler is just such a sexy pick.  With experience in the big dance, and coming off a thrilling win, Butler looks good.  On the flip side, Wisconsin too had a tight battle with Kansas State.  This is a pick I’ve waffled on multiple times.  Ultimately, Butler had to rely on absolute moronic play by Pittsburgh to win.  Wisconsin on the other hand just simply won their game.  Solid outside shooting down the stretch propelled them past Kansas State.  In other words Wisconsin beat Kansas State and advanced; Pitt lost and Butler advanced.  There’s a difference.

Final Verdict: Wisconsin

BYU v. Florida

I’m not sure what upsets me more, the fact that Florida got a 2 seed, or that BYU gets to face them.  As countless analysts have said the Southwest may well be the weakest bracket.  Hence Pittsburgh was picked almost as an auto winner.  Unfortunately, they forgot to factor in how weak Pitt was (or how strong Butler was for all you Butler Bandwagons out there).  Anyway, back to my point.  BYU has had an incredibly easy schedule all season long with a talented team.  Yes, BYU is talented, but beating Wofford and Gonzaga in the month of March may well be the biggest games the Cougars have played all year.  These games are big only because they are part of the tournament.  Schedule those as regular season games and nobody really cares (except maybe for the Gonzaga game so that we can see more shots of John Stockton watching his boy play for Gonzaga while sitting in an arena in Utah).  Nonetheless, I’m going to pick BYU in this one just because Jimmer Fredette may well be enough to propel these boys past the Gators.

Final Verdict: BYU

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