11 March 2015

2015 American Tournament Predictions

The second American Athletic Conference Tournament kicks off tomorrow in Hartford with 11 teams in the mix, one more than last year's ten after adding East Carolina, Tulane and Tulsa after losing Louisville, the defending champion, and Rutgers. The favorite of the conference has to be the regular season champion SMU, who won their first regular season title since 1993, but there are some other clubs trying to solidify their tournament bids if not stealing that automatic bid. Many eyes are on Connecticut, the defending national champions, as they have a de facto home-court advantage. All in all, plenty to keep an eye on.

Here are my 2015 American Tournament predictions.

All games held at XL Center in Hartford

First Round - Thursday, March 12th
8 East Carolina vs. 9 UCF - ESPNU, 3:30
Pick: East Carolina

7 Tulane vs. 10 Houston - ESPNEWS, 6:00
Pick: Houston

6 Connecticut vs. 11 South Florida - ESPNEWS, 8:00
Pick: Connecticut

Quarterfinals - Friday, March 13th
1 SMU vs. 8 East Carolina - ESPN2, 12:00
Pick: SMU

4 Temple vs. 5 Memphis - ESPN2, 2:00
Pick: Temple

2 Tulsa vs. 10 Houston - ESPNU, 7:00
Pick: Tulsa

3 Cincinnati vs. 6 Connecticut - ESPNU, 9:00
Pick: Connecticut

Semifinals - Saturday, March 14th
1 SMU vs. 4 Temple - ESPN2, 3:00
The more balanced attack of the Mustangs will power them past the defensive-heavy Owls.
Pick: SMU

2 Tulsa vs. 6 Connecticut - ESPN2, 5:00
Neither team scores particularly well but I think the strong offense of the Huskies and the favorable crowd will be the difference.
Pick: Connecticut

Championship - Sunday, March 15th
1 SMU vs. 6 Connecticut - ESPN, 3:15
UConn will be a chic pick in this game as mentioned earlier but I think even with playing basically a home game, the superior club will come out on top.
Pick: SMU

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