I think last night told us a lot about the college basketball teams still vying for their shot at a national championship (North Carolina is really, really good). Among my conclusions and a few predictions for tonight:
- As great as Stephen Curry is- and for my money, the most exciting to player to watch in this year’s tourney, including Michael Beasley- giving Bo Ryan and his Wisconsin staff five days to prepare for a Davidson team means only one thing: a Badgers win. Ryan is not only the best coach in the Big Ten but one of the very best in all of college basketball. Wisconsin is also one of the most underrated teams left in the tournament, but that will change after they easily dismantle the Wildcats, setting up an Elite Eight showdown with the ever-so-deep Kansas Jayhawks. Wisconsin 74, Davidson 58.
- Stanford and Texas will be the game of the night. Both teams have legitimate Final Four chances. As good as I think Stanford is- I went out on a limb and have them in the Final Four in my bracket- I just can’t pick against Texas right now. Rick Barnes has his club playing as well as anyone I’ve seen. Texas 78, Stanford 65.
- Kansas-Villanova. As good as a job Jay Wright has done with his Wildcat squad in the post-season, they just won’t have the depth to keep up with a Kansas team deeper and more talented than any team in the nation not residing in Chapel Hill, NC. Kansas 85, Villanova 62.
- I’m not picking Michigan State over Memphis just because Dick Vitale did on SportsCenter this morning. I’m picking them because Tom Izzo has a great ability to get his teams to peak at the right time of the year. Remember, this MSU squad came into Bloomington in mid-February (amidst the Kelvin Sampson investigation debacle) and were blown out by a D.J. White-less Hoosiers. Then a few weeks later, blew Indiana out in East Lansing. Izzo’s team is improving. And I’ve never been sold on John Callipari’s squad. It’ll come down to free throws, and as we all know, that doesn’t bode well for the Tigers. Michigan State 76, Memphis 75.