Do we count Gonzaga as an upset? Sure it was an 11 over a 6, but was it really an upset? I don’t think so. The Zags are playing great and certainly outplayed Seton Hall while absolutely shutting down Isaiah Whitehead. I may have picked Seton Hall to win, but that was the biggest toss-up to me. But Little Rock on the other hand, definitely an upset. With their defense, they might be able to knock off Iowa State, but we will see. And then that happened. Michigan State falls for the first time. Middle Tennessee, a 15 seed, has knocked them off and this region is now wide open. They were the predominant favorite before yesterday, and now no one knows what to do. Will Virginia make a run? Will we see Iowa State finally make it there? Will Butler have another storied Final Four? Who knows. It’s madness. March Madness.
Players to watch in the second round: Malcolm Brogdon (Virginia), Roosevelt Jones (Butler), Kelan Martin (Butler), Georges Niang (Iowa State), Kyle Wiltjer (Gonzaga), Jakob Poetl (Utah).
Click Read More to see my analysis for each game. All times are eastern.
1 Virginia vs. 9 BUTLER, Saturday 7:10pm on TBS – Butler struggled in the first 10 minutes of the game against Texas Tech, turning the ball over in ways we weren’t used to seeing from them. However, I think they have these tournament jitters out of their system. Virginia will want to turn you over, and I see Butler avoiding that. And with the way Kellen Dunham is shooting the ball from 3, I see no reason why the Bulldogs can’t win this ballgame.
12 Arkansas-Little Rock vs. 4 IOWA STATE, Saturday 6:10pm on TNT – Little Rock plays great defense and we saw that yesterday. But do they have enough to win again with just one day off. I don’t think so. A double-OT game is tough to get legs back from, and I think Iowa State will take advantage of their tired legs and pulls away late for the win.
11 Gonzaga vs. 3 UTAH, Saturday 8:40pm on TNT – Gonzaga is playing great and looked awesome against Seton Hall, but Jakob Poetl. Good luck guarding Jakob Poetl. If he plays well, Gonzaga is going to lose. I’m picking Utah.
10 SYRACUSE vs. 15 Middle Tennessee, Sunday 6:10pm on TNT – Raise your hand if you predicted this match-up. No one. Alright, good. No one is lying. I don’t think MTSU has it in them again, so I am going to go with the zone.
And that’s all I have for now, so this is me…signing off. -Lukas.