13 March 2012

2012 NCAA Tournament: First Four Predictions

That logo is correct, the road to New Orleans begins for eight teams here in Dayton for the First Four, the opening round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament. Who will survive and advance to the secound round games being played on Thursday and Friday? Here are my picks.

All games are on truTV. Tuesday's games are being called by Jim Nantz, Clark Kellogg and Steve Kerr with Tracy Wolfson roaming the sidelines. Wednesday's games will be called by Ian Eagle alongside Jersey legend Jim Spanarkel with Lewis Johnson stalking the sidelines.

Tuesday, March 13

Miss. Valley State vs. Western Kentucky (winner plays Kentucky in Louisville on Thursday) - 6:30
I think it's clear that the Hilltoppers are the worst team in all of the NCAA Tournament. This is a team that lost 18 games but got hot at the right time and stormed through the Sun Belt tournament to get their auto bid. The Delta Devils are just a much better team and WKU's run is gonna end here in front of President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron.
Pick: Mississippi Valley State

BYU vs. Iona (winner plays Marquette in Louisville on Thursday) - 9:00
I think we can all agree that Iona should not be in the NCAA Tournament. I've made my case, Mike Francesa lost his lunch over it, that's just the way it is. Nevertheless, the Gaels have the best offense, statistically, in the NCAA and have an excellent inside-outside combo with Mike Glover and Lamont Jones plus Scott Machado is a talented point guard. If only BYU had Jimmer...
Pick: Iona

Wednesday, March 14

Lamar vs. Vermont (winner plays UNC in Greensboro on Friday) - 6:30
After his epic rant following a disappointing loss to Stephen F.Austin, Pat Knight has got this Lamar club rolling, winning six straight to get to the dance. And you know what, even with the tough defense of the Catamounts, I like the Cardinals to advance.
Pick: Lamar

California vs. South Florida (winner plays Temple in Nashville on Friday) - 9:00
USF lays more bricks than I do back when I used to ball but this team plays awesome defense, seventh in the country. Yes when you have a defense that good, you are in every game but you never really get a big lead because your offense sucks, but I really think that the Bulls were toughened in the rough and tumble Big East and I just don't see much out of California.
Pick: South Florida

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