In case you missed it, we blew through the four regions earlier this week. I’m en-route to picking the Perfect Bracket to rob that arrogant Warren Buffett of his billion dollars. Or not. Or I’ll just win some office pools. Either way, there’s going to be a lot of chaos this afternoon, but whatever you do, DON’T PANIC! THERE’S NOTHING TO FREAK OUT ABOUT! You’ll be screaming that to yourself by 2pm today, but just know that so is everybody else because March Madness is lunacy. Unless you lose one of your Final Four in the first round, then it’s time to panic. Speaking of which, after blowing through the regions, our Final Four is…
SOUTH: Kansas Jayhawks
EAST: Virginia Cavaliers
WEST: Creighton Blue Jays
MIDWEST: Wichita State Shockers
April 5 – Arlington Texas – Final Four
(2) Kansas Jayhawks OVER (1) Virginia Cavaliers
Virginia plays great defense and marvelous team basketball. But Kansas has the stars. If Embiid’s back is healthy, the Cavaliers will have no answer down low, and will struggle to contain Wiggins who is blossoming into a superstar in front of our eyes. Great season by Virginia, but their run ends here.
(1) Wichita State Shockers OVER (3) Creighton Blue Jays
This one will be a blowout. A celebration for the Shockers on making their second consecutive Final Four and a simultaneous coronation announcing that this year will be different. The ferocious defense will rattle Creighton shooters all day, including, sadly, Dougie Fresh McDermott. Gregg Marshall’s squad takes a step further from last year.
April 7 – Arlington, TX – National Championship
Wichita State versus Kansas is just too perfect. It’s a rivalry that conference alignments and scheduling robbed us of. Wichita would have taken out the heavily freshman-loaded Kentucky squad earlier in the tournament as a declaration that a team-first approach and experience are key in winning.
But Kansas is a different animal than Kentucky. If all cylinders fire at the same time, Kansas is the perfect team. Embiid averaged 11.2 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game in only 23.1 minutes per game. Perry Ellis showed flashes, scoring 30 points twice this season. Naadir Tharpe averaged 17.5 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds in two wins over Iowa State. Wayne Selden dropped 24 and 20 in consecutive games against Oklahoma and Kansas State. And since the spotlight has been squarely on Wiggins, he’s responded by averaging 31 points over his last 3 games.
Wichita is a great team, but sadly I see this ending in the same tragic “so close, so far” way that Butler’s two-year run concluded. The Jayhawks raise another banner.
NCAA CHAMPION: KANSAS JAYHAWKS
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