Thursday, March 22, 2012

Boomer's NCAA Men's Sweet 16 Preview

East Region 7:15 CBS

#4 Wisconsin Badgers (26-9) vs. #1 Syracuse Orange (33-2)  Line: Syracuse by 4.5
This matchup pits two different styles of teams, 2-3 zone vs. Man-Man, Up Tempo vs. Slow it down, Athleticism vs. Pure shooters. The Badgers led by Head Coach Bo Ryan are making their 4th trip to the Sweet 16 under Coach Ryan. The Badgers rely on their perimetering shooting (36 %) and their slow it down time wasting offense. Badgers Senior PG Jordan Taylor will be counted on to score on the offensive end as well as on the defensive end slowing down Syracuse's backcourt. Taylor needs help from the rest of the Badgers squad including forwards Ryan Evans and Jared Berggren to pull the upset against the Orange tonight. Syracuse will counter with the deepest and most balanced team in the country. With nine players avgering over 10 minutes a game and only two of those players avgering double figures, the Orange relied on a number of players to win 33 games so far this season. Even without Fab Melo in the middle of the 2-3 zone for the Orange, I like Syracuse in this meeting, for the sole reason, that the Orange have the more athletic team in this matchup. The only way I see the Badgers pulling the upset, is if they can find spots in the zone defense and knock down some 3's.
Bracket Pick: Syracuse
Live Pick: Syracuse

East Region 9:45 CBS

#6 Cincinnati Bearcats (26-10) vs. #2 Ohio State Buckeyes (29-7)  Line: Ohio State by 7
Battle of Ohio in Boston, Mass. Say what you want about why these two teams do not face each other regularly in the regular season over the years, this Sweet 16 meeting theres no where to run. The Buckeyes come into this game the favors after winning their first two games in the NCAA Tourney by 19 and 7. The Buckeyes have a balanced attacked offensivly with three guys scoring over 14 ppg, led by big man Jared Sullinger. Aaron Craft is the do everything PG and looked great in the first week of the NCAA Tourney will look to shutdown the Bearcats backcourt. The Bearcats will lean on their three-headed monster in Yancy Gates, Dion Dixon, and Sean Kilpatrick all scoring over 12 ppg. in hopes of pulling off the upset. This game should be very entertaining to watch with two in-state rivals going up against each other for the right to go to the Elite Eight. In the end, the x-factor will be DeSean Thomas for the Buckeyes, if he is able to score from the inside AND outside, the Buckeyes should be alright. Lets Go Buckeyes!
Bracket Pick: Ohio State
Live Pick: Ohio State

West Region 7:47 TBS

#4 Louisville Cardinals (28-9) vs. #1 Michigan State Spartans (29-7)  Line: Michigan State by 5
Pitno vs. Izzo. Do I have your attention now? Ha, this matchup pins two Hall of Fame coaches against each other with a ticket to the Elite Eight on the line. The Cardinals come in riding a 6-game winning streak including the Big East Tournament Championship, and will continue to try and ride the wave from that. The Cardinals have done more with less then any other team this entire season, with injuries to key players all season long. The Cardinals will lean on a squad that have six players scoring 9 or more ppg. and have played well in the post season. What Pitno does to slowdown Spartans big-man do everything Forward Draymond Green will be a big factor in how this game goes. On the other side, Coach Izzo is money in the month of March reaching the Elite Eight 7 times in his career. To get to his 8th Elite Eight, Izzo will have to come up with a gameplan to slowdown the red-hot Cardinals. This one is a toss-up for a general fan, but I did have Louisville getting to the Elite Eight in my bracket, as well as, Gainer being a alumi of the school, I lean towards the Cardinals pulling the upset in this one.
Bracket Pick: Louisville
Live Pick: Louisville

West Region 10:17 PM TBS

#7 Florida Gators (25-10) vs. #3 Marquette Golden Eagles (27-7)  Line: Marquette by 1.5
In the night cap for the night, this matchup has a team that was suppose to be here and another that for most is a surpise at this point. Maruqette comes into this meeting after beating BYU by 20 in their Second Round Game and then beating Murray State by 9 in the Third Round Game. The Golden Eagles have a two-headed monster in Darius Johnson-Odom and Big East Player of the Year Jae Crowder. These two guys lead the team in scoring and provide some quality all-around play for the Golden Flashes who are more then just a two-man team (four other players scoring 7 or more points ppg). The Gators will focus on shutting down the two big name players, and try to continue their run in the tourney (outscoring their opponents by a score of 155-95 in their first two games). Marquette will be a much tougher test for the Gators up to this point in the tourney after beating Virginia and Norfolk State. Should be plenty of entertainment in this game and another great matchup to cap the evening of the first set of Sweet 16 games.
Bracket Pick: Missouri
Live Pick: Marquette

Have fun watching tonights games, good luck with your bracket picks and check back in tomorrow, for Friday's Sweet 16 games.