The NCAA tournament field for 2012 was announced tonight, and as expected, people all around the United States are filling out sheets of paper with 64 teams on them. Ah, yes! March Madness is here! The most exciting time for College Basketball fans! Let us hope that this year’s National Championship game is much more entertaining than the one we saw last year… The one thing we do know about this year’s tournament? Butler will not be busting anyone’s bracket. So who will?
One candidate has to be Virginia Commonwealth University, who ironically lost to Butler in last year’s Final Four. However, they face a tough draw in the South Region. The South Region includes notable seeds like #1 Kentucky, #2 Duke, and #9 Connecticut, last year’s tournament champion. VCU has a tough First Round matchup against mid-major #5 seed Wichita State. If they advance, their road would go through possibly Indiana and Kentucky just to reach the Elite Eight. My prediction? VCU doesn’t make it past Kentucky.
Speaking of Kentucky, they are clearly the best team in the tournament. Don’t think much of their loss to Vanderbilt earlier this afternoon in the SEC Tournament Championship. It’s hard to beat a good team like Vanderbilt three times in one season; Kentucky found that out Saturday after surviving a nail-biter in the semifinal against Florida. But Kentucky has the best starting five of any team in the country, as well as the most talent. John Calipari has his best chance to finally win his first national championship.
Who could pose the biggest challenge to Kentucky? I’d definitely have to say that North Carolina does. Their big question mark has to be the health of one of their best defender’s, John Henson. Henson was unable to play in the semifinal and final of the ACC tournament due to a sprained left wrist. North Carolina officials and coach Roy Williams did say that he should be fine for the NCAA tournament. The Tar Heels are already without guard Dexter Strickland, who has been out injured since the middle of January. Regardless, North Carolina definitely has the talent and experience to make a Final Four run.
But what do I know? Predicting the tournament is as tough as picking out a needle in a haystack. The beauty of March Madness is that it doesn’t matter if one team is better than its opponent. It matters if the opponent is better than that team on that particular day, in that particular stadium. Good luck to everyone filling out their brackets. But just remember this: don’t be mad if your bracket is busted early.
Just enjoy the games and parody of College Basketball.