Kyle’s note: Before reading this, remember that none of this reflects the opinions of the Minnesota Timberwolves. This is all me.
Now, let’s roll.
I watched three games of NCAA basketball this season and two were at The Barn to watch the Golden Gophers play and while I trust Richard Pitino to turn the program around, I’m not so sure I can even count those two games.
So yeah, I watched one college basketball game prior to the tournament. But definitely keep reading this column. I definitely know what I’m talking about.
Two of my four brackets are still alive, which is probably better than most people. Michigan State still has Mateen Cleaves crying his eyes out while scrolling through photos of Tom Izzo on Google Images.
And West Virginia, well, I don’t know anything about the Mountaineers besides the fact that a man named Kevin Pittsnogle played there.
Pittsnogle is now a car dealer in his hometown of Martinsburg, West Virginia. The more you know.
Here are my picks for the Sweet 16 games:
Villanova over Miami
This is mostly because Jay Wright is what I strive to look like in 20 years from now. Very unlikely, but we can dream. Wright said something in his last postgame press conference that he and his best player, Ryan Arcidiacono, don’t even really talk because they are always on the same page and came from the same area.
Not talking to your best player doesn’t seem like the best move, but whatever, go Wildcats!
Oklahoma over Texas A&M
Okay, let’s just get this out of the way. The only reason why Texas A&M is in this game is because every kid on Northern Iowa was kissed by a band of Dementors with less than a minute left in that game.
I’m a fan of Buddy Hield. I’ve watched highlights of him all year and man, is he fun to watch. You’re wrong if you think the guy can just shoot threes. He had a sick hesitation move against VCU that gave everyone in the bar an ‘oh shit’ look. And the good ‘oh shit’ look. Not the ‘can I use the bathroom please?’ look.
The only bad thing is that the Sooners will only go as far as Buddy brings them. If we’ve learned anything about college basketball, that’s normally not a good sign.
In Buddy We Trust.
Kansas over Maryland
It seems like every expert I listen to/read is picking the Jayhawks to win it all.
But Maryland has like two or three NBA prospects on its squad, which seems like it’s a useful thing.
Maybe the Terrapins can win?
Hell, what am I talking about? The Terrapins lost to the Gophers. Kansas by 50.
Duke over Oregon
Rooting for Duke is like rooting for the Yankees. You generally have no reason to do so unless you have the weird urge to make everyone hate you.
I have a friend/co-worker and his favorite teams are the Green Bay Packers and the Yankees.
Well, isn’t that unbelievably convenient?!
He’ll claim that he’s a fan because his dad is. My dad would much rather watch a hunting show than any sporting even besides wrestling. I go deer hunting once a year and normally fall asleep in my stand.
You can change history, Sam.
Watching Grayson Allen and Brandon Ingram scares the hell out of me if I’m on the Ducks. And then you add in guys like Plumlee XI rolling to the basket and Luke Kennard taking “I HAVE BIG BALLS” shots.
This isn’t your typical Duke team, which actually might be a good thing.
Virginia over Iowa State
Virginia is a very boring team to watch, which is exactly what coach Tony Bennett wants. Defense, defense, defense. Rooting against anything from Iowa (besides my friends Preston, Alli, Steve and Mike) is pretty easy to do.
Iowa is out. Northern Iowa is out. Iowa State, you’re next.
Iowa? More like Byeowa.
(My God. I’m sorry for that.)
Wisconsin over Notre Dame
My girlfriend went to Wisconsin. That is all.
Gonzaga over Syracuse
After all these years of picking Gonzaga to go far, here they are, finally doing it as an 11 seed. The son of Arvydass Sabonis seems like a pretty good player. You can’t take anything away from Syracuse. Jim Boeheim and company are in the Sweet 16, but the path hasn’t exactly been Fury Road. Dayton and Middle Tennessee State aren’t exactly wins that have us dreaming of the ‘Cuse ‘Melo dayz.
Somewhere Adam Morrison is licking his mustache.
On a sidewalk.
North Carolina over Indiana
This is a hellish matchup for the Tarheels and thoughts and prayers go out to John Calipari and the Wildcats. Playing the Hoosiers in the second round is a tough matchup.
I have North Carolina winning it all in one of my brackets and I’m afraid because this might be its toughest matchup of the whole tournament.
Let’s look at it:
If the Tarheels win, they’ll play Notre Dame or Wisconsin. They will then go onto play Virginia, Gonzaga, Iowa State or Syracuse. I mean, who out of that group are you super afraid of besides Virginia?
Give me the Tarheels in this one, but if the Hoosiers do win, don’t be shocked if they make a run to the championship.
What am I doing for the games tonight? Barley sodas. Couch. And opening basketball cards with my roommate.
March Madness indeed.