Have you filled out your brackets for the Tournament Challenge yet? Here’s our last take on the regional matchups.
The South Region is chock full of talent and it could make an argument for being the toughest out of all four regions. It could also be anyone’s to win headed to the Final Four with a four seed taking the prize in that team we don’t like to call by name. This could be the year that everyone has dreaded and we actually see an All-B1G Final Four. Let’s get started.
Favorite-As much as I want to see an All-B1G Final Four and will pick that team as one of my two to leave the South, Kansas is the favorite here. Since the dismantling of the Buckeyes early in the season they have made a strong debate among who the other #1 seed was really going to be. Duke’s faltering down the stretch, yet again, really opened the door. I said early in the year that my two dark horses to win it all were Kansas and Arizona. We shall see what they have in the Sweet Sixteen when they square off against you know who.
Cinderella- Shaka’s team can no-longer be a cinderella, they are like Gonzaga and Butler when it comes to big-time respect and they are getting it. My cinderella here is an easy pick for me because a kid I have known all through his middle and high school years, who graduated with my two kids, and is a special player, is Chase Fieler from FGCU. This team has the makings of a very special team and the coach to get them there. They upset Miami early in the season and their reward for it and making the dance is Georgetown? They didn’t get a good enough look from the committee because they were a 12 seed easily. I look for these high flyers to make some noise.
Most likely to be upset-Let’s continue our conversation about the cinderalla pick. FGCU’s Andy Enfield has done a great job in his short time there and it will pay huge dividends in the first round of the first NCAAs he got them there. Georgetown is a lot of peoples pick to get into the Elite 8 here, but I am not one of them. They are ripe for the picking after a brutal Big East Tourney and the Eagles are rested this will be a hard round to escape.
Unheralded Player- He’s been on the Top Ten plays of the day and has become a very important part of the engine that drives FGCU. I have watched Chase Fieler grow up, literally living in the gym. I have officiated him over the years in those same gyms and have come to know him as a jokester who you cannot turn your back on. The same can be said on the basketball court but for entirely different reasons.
He has already set the new standard for blocked shots at FGCU and will put that stat out of reach by the time he leaves the school. He has also led the team in deposits to the Dunk Bank which is a term the student body has been using during the season. If Georgetown’s bigs ignore him or turn their backs on him, they’re in big trouble. He can be the difference maker in their first round match-up.
Elite 8 picks- As much as it pains me to pick them, TTUN will be there in the Elite Eight. They have too much speed and power. The fact that Trey Burke is one of the best when he is on will be the deciding factor against Kansas in the Sweet Sixteen.
Florida is the other pick to get there. They have struggled a little down the stretch but also have too much speed and power. Donovan has one of the better teams he’s had since the back-to-back titles. Not that level of talent but close. This Elite Eight match-up will be one of the better ones because I am sure both teams will remove the brakes and go to town with the scoring.