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March 16, 2018

NCAA Tournament is Kentucky’s to Lose

So the main course of the NCAA tournament begins in full force today with half of the field playing in the first round of the tournament.

And with comes the legions of people who, after never following college basketball for the regular season, suddenly become experts on all of the 64 teams competing. That and everyone frantically fills out brackets, hoping their’s is the first perfect bracket, though the chance of that is exponentially small.

Of course, I am one of those millions of people who filled out a bracket this year once again. And like so many of the other people who filled out brackets this year, I have to admit that I have Kentucky winning it all and completing the perfect season.

I also admit that it’s the easy way out. It’s always easy to pick the number one overall team in the tournament, but it’s especially easy this year. The Wildcats have yet to lose this year. They went through their nonconference schedule, which wasn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination with games against Kansas and Texas, with little problems and then took on all comers in their SEC schedule and managed to not lose.

And so they now head into the tournament as more than just the team to beat; the NCAA tournament is Kentucky’s to lose.

Head coach John Calipari has again built an incredible team that’s likely to be one and done and headed to the NBA. Those players have learned to play as a team and make the sacrifices for the greater good of the team. And Kentucky has faced adversity with Alex Poythress going down for the season with an injury back in December and having to comeback many, many times in its SEC schedule. This team is battle hardened and tournament ready. There’s not much to not like about the team.

But I won’t bore you talking about a team that’ll likely dominate up to the Final Four. Instead, here are some interesting notes from my bracket.

  • I know I go to Texas, but I have the Longhorns reaching the Sweet Sixteen. Texas has the size advantage over Butler and Notre Dame and if they play up to their potential, they should win two games in the tourney.
  • I have only one number one seed, Kentucky, reaching the Final Four. Even as a number one seed, it’s still hard to get to the Final Four, and outside of Kentucky, it’s hard to see any of the other top seeds getting that far.
  • SFA is going to make a run. I have SFA making it to the Sweet Sixteen, beating Utah and Georgetown. They’re a popular sleeper.
  • North Carolina going to the Final Four. I know the Tar Heels have been up and down this season, but everyone steps up for tournament time and Roy Williams will have his guys up for this one.

I am perfectly sure that I do not have the perfect bracket. In fact, I am sure it will be completely busted by the end of today. But this tournament will be fun, even if Kentucky dominates the entire thing.

Let the games begin.

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