Published: Wed, March 21, 2018
Sports | By Brandy Patterson

Big 12 basketball shines in NCAA Tournament

Big 12 basketball shines in NCAA Tournament

Considering how many people are employed by UB, it's safe to assume several (soon to be former) employees picked Arizona last Thursday. Will that person be Sister Jean from Loyola-Chicago? Before the first round was completed, there were none.

The (4) Arizona Wildcats suffering a first round loss to (13) University of Buffalo last week was the biggest first round upset in the NCAA tournament next to (1) Virginia losing to (16) UMBC, the first time in March Madness history a 16 seed has beat a no. one ranked seed. It eliminated the 25 ideal brackets that remained through 28 games. Kansas State's Barry Brown was a second-teamer.

"I'm still alive in some of my bracket tournaments, but it's tough when you predict an upset that nearly happens", Schuelke said. After holding a 47-36 edge on the glass, Texas A&M should scare a MI team that has had to slog through two victories and deliver a buzzer-beater 3 to get to the Sweet 16. The Retrievers finished second behind Vermont in the American East Conference, which was why 97.82 percent intelligently picked Virginia.

Villanova and Kansas did make it through the first weekend as the top seeds in the East and Midwest Regions, respectively. I feel good to be back with the team.

They are a major conference team with beef inside that will challenge the best of post players. On any given night, a presumptive inferiority can take down a college hoops royal that's having a bad evening. Jairus Lyles, who averaged 23 points per game in his career, had 23 points in the second half against Virginia. Also, it seems like every time Syracuse is a low seed in the tournament they always make deep runs. UMBC won the rebounding battle, 31-21.It was bound to win. If it were the other way around, we would all stop watching after the first round. The Cavaliers were coming into the tournament a 30-game victor, ACC regular season and tourney champs, and many college basketball prognosticators' choice to cuts the nets as national champs. They crushed them, winning 74-54. The Bulldogs have an incredibly balanced scoring attack to go along with a top-15 defense that is good enough to win the national championship.

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Power conferences are loaded with future National Basketball Association players, a number of whom (see: Ayton, DeAndre, Arizona) showcase their individual talent for one season and leap into professional ball. And then the telegenic nun who provides her own scouting reports to players got overshadowed by the ultimate Cinderella team.

However, I understand the excitement around this year's tournament.

The Big 12 was helped by some fortune.

"This is what we came to do", West Virginia guard Jevon Carter said. "The Wildcats of Lexington's rebounding rate of 53.5 percent is fourth-best among remaining NCAA tourney teams, and lately they've been dominating the boards without 6'9" freshman forward Jarred Vanderbilt.

Are they pretenders or contenders? But the seventh-seeded Aggies, who underachieved all of the regular season, have found their groove here in the tournament.

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The fun and excitement that is March Madness didn't stop here.

No. 11 seeds have a 19-17 record over No. 6 seeds over the past nine years in the Big Dance.

Although two No. 1s in Virginia and Xavier fell heavily in the first and second rounds of March Madness, respectively.

With the first round in the books, not one 12 seed upset their 5 seed opponent this year, but (12) SDSU suffered a narrow loss to (5) Ohio State 81-73 and (12) Davidson almost beat (5) Kentucky 78-73 in the first round.

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