You are here2007 March Madness 1st Round Selection Help - #1-#3 Seeds
2007 March Madness 1st Round Selection Help - #1-#3 Seeds
It's that time of year again - it's time for those office pools, those lines at the copiers making photocopies of those brackets and web surfing trying to figure out if those teams you haven't ever heard of or seen play can beat those major conference powerhouses. Let Hagrin, a man who watches every game he can, help you.
The Play-In Game
First, the committee wants us to call it the "Opening Round Game", but I refuse. That being said, look for Niagra to win this game. Niagra, after being disrespected by the committee by having to even play in this game, has played in a tougher conference all year, won their conference tournament and finished second in their conference behind a very good Marist team. This Niagra team started off slow due to player suspensions relating to police activity and finished the season winning 11 in a row. Look for Niagra to win this game and then get blown out by Kansas in the second half.
The #1 Seeds
All of the #1 seeds are safe again this year and will win their opening round games. The toughtest 1v16 matchup this year is Ohio State vs. Central Connecticut State. UNC, Kansas and Florida all push the tempo just a bit more than Ohio State and I can see Oden slowing OSU down some. Look for the game to play under 110 points, but OSU will wear them down and win comfortably.
The #2 Seeds
Again, all the #2 seeds should be playing in the Round of 32. The toughest matchup in the 2v15 range could be the Belmont vs. Georgetown matchup. Georgetown only scores 68.5 points per game and I've seen Hibbert disappear in games. Now, Georgetown doesn't run and plays a modified Princeton offense with a lot of backdoor cuts. If Georgetown doesn't shoot a good percentage, I could see Blemont hanging in this game.
The #3 Seeds
This is where the tournament starts to get interesting. Texas A&M is the worst team UPenn could have been matched up against. Texas A&M is a smart, well-disciplined team and will beat UPenn. Oregon is probably the second closest thing there is to a lock at the 3v14 matchups. Miami(OH) needed a miracle to beat Akron and with the travel to Spokane, I don't see Oregon with their superior guard play losing this game. Two upset alerts should definitely be sent out in favor of Wright State against Pittsburgh and Oral Roberts against Washington State. Now, I know many people will say "Have you seen Washington State play?" and the answer is yes a lot. Washington St. has no tournament experience, Oral Roberts is in the tournament for the 3rd straight year. This same Oral Roberts team walked into Kansas and beat the #1 seed Jayhawks at the beginning of this year. Now, I think that Washington State will probably win this game, but if you're looking for an upset or your pool works on a points system based on the seeding, Oral Roberts is a great pick. Now, many will say PIttsburgh has too much size ot get beat by a mid-major and they are probably right. However, Wright State actually won the Horizon conference tournament and tied for the season championship and beat Butler, a 5 seed, twice. Wright State is great from the free throw line and if they can somehow get some beneficial calls and drive the ball at the Pitt big men, they may be able to win the game at the charity stripe. Again, this is a long shot and the Oral Roberts pick is definitely better if you are looking for that 3v14 upset.
More to come on the rest of the opening round games ...