The 2013 NCAA tournament field is set, and it’s time to go region by region and make predictions as to who will be advancing to the Georgia Dome in Atlanta for the Final Four.
After breaking down the matchups, here’s what my bracket looks like in the West:
#1 Gonzaga over #16 Southern
#8 Pittsburgh over #9 Wichita State
#5 Wisconsin over #12 Ole Miss
#4 Kansas State over #13 Boise State
#11 Belmont over #6 Arizona
#3 New Mexico over #14 Harvard
#10 Iowa State over #7 Notre Dame
#2 Ohio State over #15 Iona
##8 Pittsburgh over #1 Gonzaga
#5 Wisconsin over #4 Kansas State
#11 Belmont over #3 New Mexico
#2 Ohio State over #10 Iowa State
#5 Wisconsin over #8 Pittsburgh
#2 Ohio State over #11 Belmont
WEST REGIONAL FINAL
#2 Ohio State over #5 Wisconsin
Despite being a number one seed, Gonzaga still isn’t getting the credit they deserve. So of course, to back up that statement, I picked them to lose in the second round to Pitt. Go figure. I just have a feeling in my gut that Pitt has the best chance to pull off that 8 over 1 upset that we see at times. Good spot for the Panthers here.
Wisconsin scares me as an Elite Eight pick, as I believe there’s a slight chance the Badgers are ousted by Marshall Henderson and Ole Miss in the first round. I’m still picking Wisconsin, however, that’s not a confident pick. A second round matchup with Pitt would be more difficult than Wichita State, so Mark Few’s team has to be ready for that.
Belmont is my sleeper pick in this region. This is the year that Rick Byrd’s team finally wins a first round game. I see them also winning a second round game against what I believe is an overrated New Mexico team. Everyone’s gushing over Steve Alford’s squad, and don’t get me wrong, they’re good. I like Belmont taking them out though.