NCAA: The First Half of the Sweet 16

Let the games and the madness resume.

Tonight half of Elite 8 will be set. The 4 games tonight will be: Purdue and Connecticut, Xavier and Pittsburgh, Memphis and Missouri, and Villanova and Duke. With the exception of the Purdue and Connecticut game, all of these games should be great. The best game of the night will most likely be the final game of the night. That’s the Villanova Wildcats taking on the Duke Blue Devils.

All season I pretty much ripped on Duke for being overrated. I had them going out in the last round. But I have acknowledged that they are a top 20 team, just not a top 5 team. If they beat ‘Nova tonight then I’ll admit I’m wrong. ‘Nova is a very solid team and I think they’ll beat Duke. But the Blue Devils are very disciplined on both ends of the floor and they will give ‘Nova a run. I still don’t think Duke has the offensive ability to score when they really need to do so. But very soon we’ll see if they do.

Memphis and Missouri is an interesting match-up too. Memphis is still on their winning streak that started when they got into their weak conference play. So I’m not very impressed with them. But if they beat Missouri tonight then my opinion will start to change a little more. Missouri better be prepared to handle pressure and a lethal offense.

Behind the scenes, a major question to be partially answered tonight is: How many teams will the Big East get into the Elite 8? UConn, ‘Nova, and Pitt are all Big East teams that could possible advance tonight. Then tomorrow night Syracuse and Louisville will try to advance. The Big East got 5 teams into the Sweet 16. How many will they get into the Elite 8? Tonight we’ll start to see.

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