The round of 32 in this year’s tournament was exciting and full of many near upsets. The near upsets included 1 Kansas, who were down to 8 North Carolina by as much as 10 in the first half. The Jayhawks eventually ran away with the game and won 70-58.
1 Indiana was also in for a scare. They were up against 9 Temple led by Khalif Wyatt. It was a well fought game throughout by both teams, but by the end of the first half, the Owls were leading 29-26. This Hoosiers team led by Victor Oladipo refused to go down, and won the game with a close score of 58-52.
The closest game from the weekend was no doubt the battle between the 2 Ohio State Buckeyes and the 10 Iowa State Cyclones. Ohio State was thrashing the Cyclones the entire game, leading by as much as 13 points, until Iowa State picked up momentum and went on a 13-0 run and tied the game at 69. The game was close from here on out. Controversy stirred when Melvin Ejim went for a lay-up and was called for the offensive foul. Video review showed that Aaron Craft’s heel was in the restricted area. This would have given the Cyclones a crucial two points and a chance to get another point at the free throw line. Instead, it was a non-reviewable play and Ohio State was given the ball. With 30 seconds left in the game, the Buckeyes had the ball with a chance to win the game. Aaron Craft had the ball in his hands the entire time and with 1 second left pulled up a three-pointer for the win. The final score was 78-75.
1 Gonzaga was the first one seed to go down. This came as no surprise to me as I felt that they were overrated. It did surprise me that they lost this early though. I expected them to lose in the Sweet Sixteen. 9 Wichita State defeated them, with the final score being 76-70.
And then, of course, there is this year’s Cinderella, 15 Florida Gulf Coast. FGCU won again and became the first 15 seed to make the Sweet Sixteen by defeating 7 San Diego State 81-71.
Other Scores from the Round of 32
1 Louisville def. Colorado State 82-56
12 Oregon def. 4 Saint Louis 74-57
3 Michigan State def. 6 Memphis 70-48
2 Duke def. 7 Creighton 66-50
13 La Salle def. 12 Ole Miss 76-74
6 Arizona def. 14 Harvard 74-51
4 Michigan def. 5 VCU 78-53
3 Florida def. 11 Minnesota 78-64
4 Syracuse def. 12 California 66-60
3 Marquette def. 6 Butler 74-72
2 Miami (FL) def. 7 Illinois 63-59
Sweet Sixteen Predictions
1 Louisville Cardinals def. 12 Oregon Ducks
3 Michigan State Spartans def. 2 Duke Blue Devils
13 La Salle Explorers def. 9 Wichita State Shockers
6 Arizona Wildcats def. 2 Ohio State Buckeyes
4 Michigan Wolverines def. 1 Kansas Jayhawks
15 Florida Gulf Coast Eagles def. 3 Florida Gators
1 Indiana Hoosiers def. 4 Syracuse Orange
2 Miami Hurricanes def. 3 Marquette Golden Eagles
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