Friday the No. 1 player at www.valueaddbasketball.com, Delon Wright, will have to overcome an incredible trio from Duke to advance, while Breitbart Sports can widen the lead over the president with a Gonzaga win over UCLA.
Meanwhile in an East Bracket that lost its No. 1 and No. 2 seed (Villanova and Virginia), it will be NC State against Louisville and Oklahoma against Michigan State.
On March 9, Breitbart Sports calculated that Michigan State and Utah were the two teams that would have the best chance at a surprise run despite not being a No. 1 or 2 seed, and despite being seeded 7th and 5th both remain alive.
Here are the Friday match-ups:
Gonzaga vs. UCLA (7:15 pm): Gonzaga’s inside-outside has virtually matched Duke’s above. Kyle Wiltjer moved up to 21st while hitting 18-24 field goals and grabbing 15 rebounds, and Kevin Pangos is at 28th for his fourth straight year in the top 3% of players in the all-time Value Add database. The Zags want to establish they are now the western power against the all-time program. UCLA only has one Top 1o0 player in Kevon Looney, who told the LA Times he would be more physical against Gonzaga despite his face fracture that requires a mask (see photo).
NC State vs. Louisville (7:37 pm): Anthony “Cat” Barber is the 2nd-ranked player on NC State at Value Add, and this will be his first game since yelling, “What the F… is wrong with Barack Obama?” The only NC State player ranked higher than him is Trevor Lacey (83rd), who followed Mark Gottfried from Alabama. They will have a tough time with an encore to the Villanova win, as Louisville was the only team besides Kentucky to have two Breitbart Sports All-Americans. Rick Pitino seems to hold his star guards back until March Madness, and Terry Rozier put up 37 points the opening weekend and shot up from 26th to 13th in the Value Add rankings. His All-American teammate Montrezl Harrell had battled Kentucky to a tie in last year’s tournament game until he fouled out.
Utah vs. Duke (9:45 pm Friday): Delon Wright (Value Add No. 1 player) has lived up to our pre-season billing on Fox Sports and our pick for them to upset Georgetown to make the Sweet 16. Wright went 15 of 18 from the line and had 7 assists opening weekend, but Utah’s second most valuable player according to Value Add is 81st-ranked Brandon Taylor. That will be a tough match-up against the only team besides Kentucky with three players in the top 1% of all players. Jahlil Okafor went 21 of 27 to move up from 38th to 23rd, Quinn Cook went 9-18 on three-pointers to move up from 43rd to 19th and Tyus Cook had 13 assists to move from 36th to 32nd last weekend.
Oklahoma vs. Michigan State (10:07 p.m.): Breitbart Sports All-American Buddy Hield will be the best player on the court after 30 points and 7 assists on opening weekend, but he will be up against the clear Coach of the Year in Tom Izzo. When we noted Michigan State and Utah were the two most likely to have surprise runs, the former was based on three other Final Four teams Izzo had produced despite not have the normal three stars needed to make it that far. He is doing it again with Denzel Valentine (ranked 99th) as his only top 100 player.
The following is a list of each team that won at least one game in the tournament, and how many wins each was picked to have by Breitbart Sports and by President Obama’s Barack-et.
|Region||Seed||Team||Next||Actual||Breitbart Sports||Correct||President Obama||Correct|
|Midwest||3||Notre Dame||Sat 9||3||3||3||3||3|
|South||8||San Diego St.||Done||1||1||1||1||1|