March Madness is one of the most exciting tournaments in all sports. With 64 college basketball teams competing for multiple rounds of single-elimination play the tournament almost always lives up to its name with huge upsets and incredible finishes.
This year is no different as top seeds continue to lose too many lower-ranked opponents and yet again it is impossible to make a perfect bracket. Day by day we continue to get closer to the final four and even the title game and right now it truly seems that anything is possible.
Some of the biggest upsets in the round of 64 included the No. 2 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes falling to No. 15 seed Oral Robers, No. 4 Virginia losing to No. 13 Ohio, and No. 4 Purdue losing to No. 13 North Texas. Right from that start absolute chaos ensued and as we moved on in the tournament crazy things continued to happen.
The Illinois Fighting Illini entered the tournament as a No. 1 seed with high expectations and many believing that they could go as far as winning the entire tournament. Their title hopes came to a quick end in round two with a loss to Loyola Chicago.
As things stand right now it appears that this tournament is for anyone’s taking. Some of the top remaining teams in the tournament include Alabama, Baylor, Gonzaga, Michigan, Iowa, and Houston.
With multiple upsets early on some of these team’s paths to the final four have gotten much easier and some teams still need to get back on a roll after time off.
It will continue to be important for top teams to weather the storm against some of these lower-seeded teams that have nothing to lose and for the higher-seeded teams after seeing all of these upsets they can’t take any opponent lightly.
As we approach the sweet 16 some of the lower-seeded teams that shocked the world in round one have been eliminated. Usually, it is a little bit difficult for underdog teams to go on a run in this tournament, but they have proved that sometimes it is impossible to stop teams that catch fire.
Right now two of the most dangerous underdogs include No. 11 seed Syracuse that is coming off of a win against No. 3 West Virginia and No. 8 seed Loyola Chicago that dominated No. 1 Illinois for both halves.
For these underdog teams, it will continue to be important that they jump out early and come out firing. These teams have already seen success early in the tournament and there is no reason for them to back down or be afraid of any opponent as they have quickly proved that they belong in the tournament.
When evaluating the bracket at this time some of the teams with the easiest paths to the final four include No. 1 Gonzaga, No. 1 Michigan, and No. 2 Alabama. Baylor has also come out strong in the early rounds of this tournament.
Alabama is having an unbelievable year and the Crimson Tide won the SEC championship. I expect Alabama to be in the final four and could see them as one of the hotter teams that could go the distance.
Right now I believe that it will be either Michigan or Alabama reaching the championship game against Baylor. I will be rather surprised to see some of these really good teams fall before making it deeper in the tournament, but when things are all said and done I think the Baylor Bears end up cutting down the net.