Nevada (7) vs. Loyola-Chicago (11) 7:07 PM, Thursday.
This game is going to be all sorts of fun. The wild South region has been nonstop entertainment. The main story line here? Sister Jean and the Ramblers taking on Coach Musselman and the Wolf Pack. Vegas predicts the game to be close (Nevada -1.5) and that is all we want between these two teams. Loyola has beaten Miami and Tennessee on two game-winners. Nevada took Texas to overtime and upset Mick Cronin’s Bearcats on a buzzer- beater. Lets pray for another thriller. Pencil in Nevada to the Elite 8.
Musselman 74, Sister Jean 72
Michigan (3) vs. Texas A&M (7) 7:37 PM, Thursday
Michigan stunned Houston on a Jordan Poole buzzer-beating three last Saturday to advance to the Sweet 16. The Aggies destroyed a senior-driven UNC squad. Texas A&M is a very big team with a potential lottery pick in Robert Williams. Michigan has arguably the most depth out of any of the remaining programs. Vegas predicts another close game in Los Angeles (Michigan -2.5). I can comment on behalf of the whole college basketball universe that we are excited for a Big 10-SEC showdown. Give me the Wolverines advancing to the Elite 8.
Michigan 62, Texas A&M 55
Kentucky (5) vs. Kansas State (9) 9:37 PM, Thursday
Kansas State has had an unconventional road to the Sweet 16. After destroying Creighton, they were probably watching film on Virginia. Instead, they played a round of 32 game against the UMBC Retrievers. Kentucky on the other hand expected a match-up with the Wildcats of Arizona, once they successfully defeated a very good Davidson Team. Instead the Wildcats of Kentucky faced the Bulls of Buffalo. The bottom line is that both Kansas State and Kentucky defeated teams they were supposed to. Now it’s up to them to fight it out in Atlanta. Kentucky is favored by 5.5 and that line hasn’t had much movement yet. I like coach Calipari and Kentucky to reach the Elite 8.
Kentucky 81, Kansas State 77
Gonzaga (4) vs. Florida State (9): 9:59 PM, Thursday
We knew the West would be wild. Florida State upset a weak one seed in Xavier in the round of 32. Gonzaga was tested down the wire against a very solid UNCG squad. Gonzaga then controlled the game against Ohio State, until Ohio State made a huge run to take a lead. Gonzaga ultimately prevailed due to their efficiency on both the offensive and defensive side of the basketball. I trust Mark Few and Gonzaga to beat the Seminoles in Los Angeles. Hopefully we see a Gonzaga-Michigan Elite 8. Oh boy, that would be a lot of fun.
Gonzaga 77, Seminoles 70