PCP: Who will win the NCAA Tournament?


For any college hoops fan - heck, for most fans in general - the first weekend of the men's NCAA Tournament is nearly a four-day holiday in hoops.

Two No. 1 seeds didn't make it out of the opening weekend for the first time since 2004, when Stanford and Kentucky lost in the second round. Consider the following. As recent as late February, the Cats were mired in a four-game losing streak that had United Kingdom fans drinking copious amounts of Kentucky bourbon and thinking the Cats may miss the tournament entirely. The Retrievers' magical run may have ended quickly, but the darlings out of the American East did more than enough to solidify their place in NCAA history.

UMBC gained over 100,000 followers on Twitter after making history by beating Virginia. The madness began on Thursday, when No. 13 seed Buffalo opened their tournament play with a 21-point beatdown of Arizona, sending the NBA's likely No. 1 pick DeAndre Ayton home early.

For the second consecutive season, Bob Huggins has his West Virginia squad in the Sweet 16 as they will be forced to take on the top-seeded Villanova Wildcats.

"We are so excited to see so many fans come out and support the teams competing in the first and second rounds of the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship and are really seeing a positive impact of the top 16 seeds serving as hosts", said Rhonda Lundin Bennett, chair of the women's basketball committee. Michigan wins at the buzzer while Syracuse escapes with a great win over Michigan State.

But the madness did not stop there. The path to the Final Four also got a bit easier for West No. 4 Gonzaga (+700) with Round of 32 upsets of No. 1 Xavier and No. 2 North Carolina.

The Gamecocks player calls accounted for more than 1,000 tickets sold. The Wildcats beat No. 16 Radford and No. 9 Alabama by more than 20 points.

One business manager said there is one area to improve.

Taking out the toss-up games - 8 vs. 9 seeds and 7s vs. 10s - six of the other 24 first-round matchups were won by the lower seed.

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The rematch will mark the second NCAA Tournament matchup between Hall of Famers Mike Krzyzewski and Jim Boeheim, with Coach K's Blue Devils winning one in the Sweet 16 in 1998. With as many 11-seed teams remaining as 1-seeds, the Sweet 16 promises to be more of the same. Which teams have the best chances at snagging a national championship?

FGCU, which put up more than 40 3-pointers in 10 games prior to the Stanford match-up this season, shot just over 36% from beyond the arc as a team this season.

It's guaranteed that a maximum of one top seed will play for the national title because only Kansas and East No. 1 Villanova are still standing and they would potentially meet in the Final Four.

That said, the West bracket is the most competitive of the four, as it would not be hard to see Xavier, Gonzaga, or red hot MI make it out alive.

Virginia wasn't the only favored team to lose by a significant amount of points. They also have been dominant in their two wins over No. 15 Iona and No. 7 Rhode Island.

As awesome as they are in the moment, upsets can leave the tournament's best players and teams out of the bracket and leave the fans watching college basketball's second-rate product.

The ACC has four of the 16 teams left, but Duke provides the conference with their best hope for a title.

With the exception of Kentucky, which knows its way around Atlanta all too well, no one could've expected these teams to need directions to the NCAA's South Regional.

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