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KSR NCAA Tournament Preview: West Region

We wrap up our NCAA Tournament previews with the West Region. In case you missed them, check out our previews of the East Region, Midwest Region, and South Region.

The Bracket


Viewing Schedule

THURSDAY
1:30 PM (13) UNC Greensboro (4) Gonzaga TNT
4:00 PM (12) South Dakota State (5) Ohio State TNT
7:20 PM (11) San Diego State (6) Houston TBS
9:50 PM (14) Montana (3) Michigan TBS
FRIDAY
12:15 PM (10) Providence (7) Texas A&M CBS
2:45 PM (15) Lipscomb (2) North Carolina CBS
7:20 PM (16) NC Central/Texas Southern (1) Xavier TBS
9:50 PM (9) Florida State (8) Missouri TBS

Best Stars

Michael Porter Jr., Missouri

Porter Jr. was understandably rusty in his SEC Tournament debut, scoring 12 points off 5-17 from the floor in 23 minutes. When healthy, he’s the type of player that can take over games, but how much will a week help his stamina and on-court chemistry with his squad?

 Trevon Bluiett, Xavier

Bluiett is everything you want in a senior guard. He hits 42% from three, and if you foul him on his way to the basket, he’ll punish you from the free throw line, where he makes 86% of his shots.

Joel Berry, North Carolina

By now, you should be more than familiar with Berry, UNC’s senior point guard. Berry is clutch in March, and although we’re all still a little sore about last year’s Elite Eight loss to the Tar Heels, we do have him to thank for getting TV Teddy Valentine banned from this year’s tournament.


Best Mascot: The San Diego State Aztec

You’re welcome, ladies.


Upset picks

(12) South Dakota State over (5) Ohio State

Most people are picking Davidson over Kentucky as the 5/12 upset, but I think South Dakota State over Ohio State is much more likely. The Jackrabbits are efficient and have a star in Mike Daum, who has 12 30-plus point performances this year, along with 10.4 rebounds per game. Plus, Ohio State hasn’t looked great lately.

(10) Providence over (7) Texas A&M

So many people are picking this it probably isn’t considered an upset. The Aggies have been incredibly inconsistent and Providence beat Xavier, the one-seed in this region, and took Villanova to OT in the Big East Tournament. Texas A&M is one of the most dangerous teams in the country when they’re playing well, but the Friars are a formidable foe.

(11) San Diego State over (6) Houston

San Diego State hasn’t lost in a month and beat Gonzaga, the four-seed in this region, but Houston is also on a roll. This will be a fun one.


All-Name Team

  • Kerem Kanter, Xavier (Enes Kanter’s little brother)
  • Keita Bates-Diop, Ohio State
  • Skyler Flatten, South Dakota State
  • Valentine Sangoyomi, Houston
  • Alpha Diallo, Providence

Dark Horse: (8) Missouri

If Michael Porter plays like Michael Porter can, watch out for Mizzou.


Ugliest Uniform

Boring. (But still better than checkerboard.)


Pick: (2) North Carolina

With this draw, North Carolina might as well be a one-seed. Try as I might, I can’t see a team that will stop them from making the Final Four, where they could face Kentucky. Who wants to jump on the Michigan bandwagon with me?

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Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

5 Comments for KSR NCAA Tournament Preview: West Region



  1. JTHinton
    12:03 pm March 15, 2018 Permalink

    UNCG and Ohio St jerseys are worse



  2. luke_emberton
    12:11 pm March 15, 2018 Permalink

    Depends on how well Michigan and Texas A&M play



  3. Jiminy Crickets
    12:19 pm March 15, 2018 Permalink

    Michigan wins it, and plays the UK/Arizona winner (winner of that game wins the bracket)



  4. UKrailbird
    1:21 pm March 15, 2018 Permalink

    Tyler…love your reporting and writing. However, I conducted an informal poll of 23 individuals at my golf club. 20 liked the design…3 did not like it. Outside of KSR’s negative fixation on the checkerboard design, I think my informal poll pretty much reflects the “outside of KSR-world” opinion on this. At least that is what the results are when I ask people their opinions at random.



  5. DT in DC
    3:16 pm March 15, 2018 Permalink

    MIchigan looked great during their conference tourney. I have them in my Final Four.