The round of 32 is here and every team has fought and earned their way to have a chance to go to the Sweet 16 (except for UCLA). If you thought that the round of 64 was crazy, just wait the madness hasn’t even reached its peak. I will be previewing the marquee game of the day and also make brief predictions on the rest of the games. Today’s Matchup of the day is 6 seeded Xavier Musketeers vs the 14 seeded Georgia State Panthers.
Keys for Xavier:
In just their second year in the Big East ,the Musketeers have made a name for themselves after moving out of the A-10. What really stands out about this team is their efficiency on the defensive side of the court. They shut down a hot Ole Miss team who were coming off a 94 point game. The focal point of the game for Xavier has to be their monster in the paint Matt Stainbrook . He is the heart and soul of this Xavier team as well as their leading scorer and rebounder. Georgia State struggles in the post so look for Stainbrook to exploit that weakness.
Keys for Georgia State:
After Georgia State’s emotional upset vs 3 seeded Baylor, the Panthers are ready to try on the glass slipper. The Panthers beat the Bears without their starting point guard who is their leading scorer. This is a very dangerous team that could make an Elite 8 run. Three point shooting is a huge factor, the Panthers are lights out from three. Also this team has some tourney experience. The last time Kevin Ware was in March Madness, he won the National Championship with Louisville after suffering his devastating injury. Ryan Harrow is the key for Ron Hunter’s Panthers to pull off another upset. The Kentucky transfer is arguably the best player on this team and having him back in the picture just makes this hungry GSU team even scarier.
Prediction: I believe the Panthers will be able to move the ball around the stingy Musketeer defense and move on to the Sweet 16. The clock will not strike midnight for Ron Hunter and Georgia State. Georgia State 67 Xavier 61
(14) UAB 74 vs (11 )UCLA 60
(1) Kentucky 84 vs (8) Cincinnati 69
(2 ) Arizona 75 vs (10) Ohio State 72
(1) Villanova 61 vs (8) NC State 60
(4) Georgetown 65 vs (5) Utah 60
(4) North Carolina 76 vs (5) Arkansas 72
(3) Notre Dame 68 vs (6) Butler 62