05 April 2015

2015 NCAA Tournament: National Championship Game Predictions

People are awesome (AP)
I'll be honest, I am still stunned that Kentucky actually lost. Like Robert Patrick in The Marine, I thought they just wouldn't die but lo and behold, it was the Wisconsin Badgers moving on to the National Championship Game on Monday night to take on the Duke Blue Devils. It's an all-one seed showdown, just not the one that most folks saw coming.

So now in the aftermath of what happening on Saturday night, who will be cutting down the nets at Lucas Oil Stadium after winning it all? Here are my predictions.

1 Duke vs. 1 Wisconsin - CBS, 9:12
The Badgers can say all they want their goals this season were not to get past last season and exact revenge on the Wildcats after that bonkers ending to their national semifinal game a year ago when Aaron Harrison made a contested three from Nacogdoches to get to last year's national championship game. Now after closing on a 15-4 run to knock off the previously undefeated, now they are in their first championship game since 1941.

But to win their first championship since 1941, the Badgers are going to have to get through the Dukies who, as some may have forgotten, smoked Michigan State in the first national semifinal. It is hard to name a team that has looked more impressive all tournament long than Duke has as they have been in control of every game they have been in, winning all but one game by double-digits. We all know about their offense but their defense this tournament has arguably been the story as they have been really good on that end of the court.

These are two of the finest offenses in college basketball, with Wisconsin being first in offensive efficiency and Duke in third, so you should see your fair share of points. I, for one, am excited for the post matchup of Frank Kaminsky and Jahlil Okafor, the two top contenders in my opinion for the Wooden Award. But I think Duke has the edge for two reasons.

First, the aforementioned defense for Duke will prove to be a significant key for them as they are definitely better defensively than Wisconsin is. And second, I legitimately wonder after taking out Kentucky in an absolutely whale of a game, do the Badgers have anything left for Duke on Monday night?

Duke 72 Wisconsin 64

No comments:

Post a Comment