SantoSports March Madness Preview

By Peter Santo

Editor-In-Chief

Ladies and Gentlemen, March Madness is upon us, and SantoSports is here with predictions for the 2016 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Let’s break it down region by region.

East:

Top 4 seeds:

  1. North Carolina
  2. Xavier
  3. West Virginia
  4. Kentucky

First Round Potential Upsets: Providence over USC, Pittsburgh over Wisconsin

Sweet 16: North Carolina over Kentucky, Notre Dame over Xavier

Elite Eight: North Carolina over Notre Dame

Regional Winner: North Carolina

North Carolina is simply the most complete team in this region, and certainly deserving of a number one seed. They have an inside presence in Senior Brice Johnson and an excellent floor general in fellow Senior point guard Marcus Paige. I expect the Heels to be tested by John Calipari and Kentucky, but they should advance to the Final Four.

Midwest:

Top 4 seeds:

  1. Virginia
  2. Michigan State
  3. Utah
  4. Iowa State

First Round Potential Upsets: Gonzaga over Seton Hall, Syracuse over Dayton

Sweet 16: Virginia over Iowa State, Michigan State over Gonzaga

Elite Eight: Michigan State over Virginia

Regional Winner: Michigan State

The Selection Committee just gave Tom Izzo’s team a massive chip on their shoulder by making them a 2 seed. That’s just what the Spartans need to make another deep run in March. The Virginia Cavaliers won’t know what hit them when they square off in the Elite Eight.

South:

Top 4 seeds:

  1. Kansas
  2. Villanova
  3. Miami
  4. California

First Round Potential Upsets: Uconn over Colorado

Sweet 16: Kansas over California, Villanova over Arizona

Elite Eight: Kansas over Villanova

Going mostly chalk (no pun intended) in this region. Just the one upset in the first round, with the Jayhawks, arguably the tournament’s most complete team, moving on to the Final Four.

West:

Top 4 seeds:

  1. Oregon
  2. Oklahoma
  3. Texas A&M
  4. Duke

Potential First Round Upsets: Northern Iowa over Texas, VCU over Oregon State

Sweet Sixteen: Duke over Oregon, Oklahoma over Texas A&M

Elite Eight: Oklahoma over Duke

Simply put, Buddy Hield is the best all around player in America, and his Sooners will likely advance to the Final Four. Duke will put up a good fight in the Elite Eight, but it will not be enough to knock off the Sooners.

Now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for. National Championship prediction!!!

National Semifinal: Michigan State over North Carolina

National Semifinal: Kansas over Oklahoma

National Championship: Kansas over Michigan State

Well, there you have it. The Kansas Jayhawks are my pick to win the national title. Now these predictions will most likely be entirely incorrect, and my bracket will likely be busted after the first day of action. But, these predictions were certainly fun to make. And while I picked my team, the UNC Tar Heels, to fall in the National Semifinal, they certainly have the firepower to win it all. And I will be rooting them on the whole way.

My full bracket:

Let the madness begin.

 

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