After two crazy games yesterday where my picks just barely missed(hey at least I called ..."/> After two crazy games yesterday where my picks just barely missed(hey at least I called ..."/>

NCAA Elite Eight: Sunday Preview


After two crazy games yesterday where my picks just barely missed(hey at least I called that they would be close) and a crazier Saturday night I am back to present to you a extremely tired version of my Elite Eight preview.

#11 VCU Vs. #1 Kansas

The last number one seed in the tournament comes to face off a team that caused a national debate on whether or not they even deserved to be in the First Four play-in game in.

Kansas is led by a group of experienced players who still have painful memories of their upset against Northern Iowa last year. After showing they can kill Cinderella teams after their dismantling of Richmond on Friday the Jayhawks look ready to take advantage of a broken bracket and sneak their way into a cupcake filled run to the National Championship.

VCU is the George Mason of this tournament, which is no coincidence as the Rams from Richmond, Virginia play in the same conference as the team that shocked the world five years ago, beating the Rudy Gay led UConn Huskies and advancing to the Final Four.

The Rams didn’t even think they were going to be here, but they are riding the momentum and a nothing to lose mentality, and have the whole country cheering for them. The odds are stacked against them but with a group of players led by Joey Rodriguez this VCU team is ready to shock the world.

Keys to the Game

VCU- Attack Early: If the Rams want to win this game they will need to start putting the doubt in the Jayhawks mind early. If they can do that, Kansas will start to get nervous and start pressing, if Kansas gets going they may find themselves in the same boat Richmond is in.

Kansas- Control Pace: The best way to prevent an upset is to play at your pace, don’t let the underdog grab momentum by playing in the halfcourt and slowing down the game, using your skill to break down the weaker team. Kansas obviously has the tools to do that and if they play their own game and control momentum it will be a huge step in avoiding the upset.

Prediction: As much as I would love to ride with VCU, you have to pick the much stronger Kansas team to win this game.

#4 Kentucky Vs #2 UNC

Both these teams weren’t supposed to be here. Kentucky was supposed to be on a down year with the departure of four first-round draft picks from a squad that lost in last year’s Elite Eight, now after beating Ohio State the Wildcats have a chance to do better than the superstar team of last year did.

In January the Tar Heels stunk, but after Larry Drew decided to transfer and leave campus, Kendall Marshall decided to put the team on his back and led the Heels to a shocking ACC Regular Season title and now has a chance to pull off a dream season by leading his team to the Final Four for the first time since Psycho T was rocking the Tar Heel blue.

This game is a battle between two of the best college basketball schools of all-time and has the potential to be a classic, expect a close game with a wild finish.

Players to Watch

Kentucky: Brandon Knight is the key to the Wildcats success, after a ho-hum performance against Ohio State, which he salvaged with the game-winning shot, Knight will have to have a solid game on both ends of the floor if his team wants to win

UNC: Kendall Marshall and John Henson are the sleeper players of this tournament. Marshall quietly leads this team as a classic floor general while Harrison Barnes takes all the hype. Henson controls the paint with his length and leaping ability, making the Heels a serious problem on the defensive end of the floor. If Marshall can give the Tar Heels composure, and Henson can create stops and take away the Wildcats inside game, North Carolina will be dancing in the Final Four.

Prediction: I had the Tar Heels going to the Final Four at the start of the tournament so I am going to ride with them.