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2014 NCAA Tournament: East Region Preview, Sleepers and Upset Picks

posted on March 16, 2014

A region-by-region preview of this year's NCAA Tournament, complete with a rundown of March Madness' top teams, Sweet 16 sleepers to watch out for, potential first-round upsets and Cinderella stories from this year's Big Dance.EASTNew YorkTop Team – Virginia (1)The Virginia Cavaliers (28–6, 16–2 ACC) became the first team other than Duke or North Carolina to win the ACC regular season conference title outright since Maryland in 2002 — the same year the Terrapins...

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2014 NCAA Tournament: Midwest Region Preview, Sleepers and Upset Picks

posted on March 16, 2014

A region-by-region preview of this year's NCAA Tournament, complete with a rundown of March Madness' top teams, Sweet 16 sleepers to watch out for, potential first-round upsets and Cinderella stories from this year's Big Dance.MIDWESTIndianapolisTop Team – Wichita State (1)The Wichita State Shockers (34–0, 18–0 Missouri Valley) had an impressive encore following last season’s unbelievable run to the Final Four. Coach Gregg Marshall’s team ran the table...

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2014 NCAA Tournament: West Region Preview, Sleepers and Upset Picks

posted on March 16, 2014
A region-by-region preview of this year's NCAA Tournament, complete with a rundown of March Madness' top teams, Sweet 16 sleepers to watch out for, potential first-round upsets and Cinderella stories from this year's Big Dance.WESTAnaheimTop Team – Arizona (1)The Arizona Wildcats (30–4, 15–3 Pac-12) opened the season with a 21–0 mark, including impressive wins over Duke, Michigan and UCLA. Although the Wildcats went 9–4 to close out the season — losing...
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2014 NCAA Tournament: South Region Preview, Sleepers and Upset Picks

posted on March 16, 2014
A region-by-region preview of this year's NCAA Tournament, complete with a rundown of March Madness' top teams, Sweet 16 sleepers to watch out for, potential first-round upsets and Cinderella stories from this year's Big Dance.SOUTHMemphisTop Team – Florida (1)The Florida Gators (32–2, 18–0 SEC) are fresh off a perfect 18–0 SEC regular season followed by the SEC Tournament title. Florida is the top No. 1 seed in the Big Dance, their first No. 1 seed since 2007...
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NCAA Tournament Selection Sunday Reaction: Virginia, NC State up. SMU, Louisville down

posted on March 16, 2014

As usual, the first surprises of the NCAA Tournament start with Selection Sunday. The brackets you’ve just printed may still be warm, and a few teams are still in shock.NC State is in. SMU is out. Virginia is No. 1. And Louisville is not happy.Those aren't the only teams taking a long look at the next three weeks. Here's what stood out from the Selection Show and what we learned about the NCAA selection committee this time around.No one will doubt Wichita State if the Shockers advanceThe...

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College Basketball's Not Coach of the Year for every major conference

posted on March 14, 2014

Three weeks ago, Athlon Sports profiled the the top contenders for coach of the year in every league. This is not that story.For every yin there’s a yang, and these are what we’re going to call the Not Coach of the Year for every major conference.In general, we’ve tried to stay away from programs where things have happened beyond their control such as injuries or coaches of programs expected to be bad this season.To be a Not Coach of the Year, the coach probably saw his program...

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Athlon Sports' 2013-14 College Basketball Tall-America Team

posted on March 13, 2014

College basketball, especially this time of year, is all about mismatches.In general, that means a power forward with quickness or a big guy who can step out to take a 3.With 351 teams in college basketball, the sample size leads to size mismatches between a 5-foot-8 guard and a 7-6 center. And we’re not kidding. This is a matchup that actually happened.That leads us to the Tall-America team, a collection of the best players at every height from a 5-7 point guard to a 7-6 center.For sake...

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Weekly Tipoff: Can Kansas contend for a title with an injured Joel Embiid?

posted on March 13, 2014

One of the nation’s best freshmen with a bright future and national title contending team received season-altering news this week when center Joel Embiid sustained a stress fracture in his back.At first, Embiid was held out of the last two games of the regular season as a precautionary measure, but the news worsened when it was announced he’d be held out of the Big 12 Tournament and the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament.The news could impact Embiid’s NBA Draft hopes, where...

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Bubble Teams with the Most to Gain in the Conference Tournaments

posted on March 12, 2014

The NCAA selection committee likes to remind us that a team’s entire body of work is being judged on Selection Sunday.Why, then, does it seem that last impressions matter every season?The conference tournaments give every team another chance to prove why they’re worthy of an NCAA Tournament slot or show why they were on the bubble in the first place.Roughly 10 spots in the field may be up for grabs as the major conference tournaments begin Wednesday and Thursday. With 17 teams in play...

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Conference Tournament Primer: Picks for every major league

posted on March 12, 2014

Picking No. 1 seeds is no fun. It’s not fun on your NCAA bracket and certainly not fun in the conference tournaments.Not to mention it’s statistically impossible for all No. 1 seeds to advance all the way to a tournament championship.All of the teams at No. 1 in the league tournaments have their NCAA bids wrapped up and some, including Florida and probably Arizona, already have No. 1 seeds in the NCAAs in play. In other words, a few No. 1 seeds don’t have much more they need...

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