The Cats may be waiting for their next opponent but basketball is still being played all night long. By the looks of things we should all be in for some close games and maybe a bit of March Madness. Here’s what you’ll be seeing in tonight’s second half:
(9) NC State vs (1) Villanova
Nobody has seen a Big East game played all year so it is impossible to know if the Wildcats are legit. KenPom thinks their pretty solid as they are ranked 4th with top 15 marks in offensive and defensive efficiencies. NC State made it to the round of 32 via another late game collapse by LSU. Villanova is favored by 9.5 and I think the Cats will cover.
(5) Utah vs (4) Georgetown
How many fans could Georgetown possibly have across the country in Portland, Oregon? The game tips at 7:45 which will be like 10:45 for the Georgetown players. Not a good winning formula for a Hoya team that will face a Utah team ranked 7th in the KenPom. Another 4-seed could drop tonight and Vegas has the Utes favored by 4.5.
(5) Arkansas vs (4) North Carolina
Welcome to today’s battle of teams that Kentucky beat this season. Arkansas struggled to put away Wofford in the opening round while UNC nearly let Harvard pull off the shocker. Both teams lost in their conference championships but UNC looks to be playing a bit better. Vegas believes in North Carolina as the heels are favored by 4.5.
(6) Butler vs (3) Notre Dame
As if you needed another reason to pull for Butler over Notre Dame, the Bulldogs are coached by Kentucky native Chris Holtmann. John Clay covered Holtmann back in December when he was guiding the team as interim head coach. Here’s a bit on his KY roots:
Holtmann, 43, who grew up in Lexington before his family moved to Nicholasville during his high school years. Holtmann graduated from Jessamine County High School in 1990 after helping the Colts reach the Boys’ State Tournament.
Anytime a strong mid-major gets a shot at a power conference school from their home state in the NCAA tournament magic tends to happen. Dayton did it last year against Ohio State. Wichita may do it tomorrow. For today, I like the Bulldogs. But it is Notre Dame who is favored by 4.5.
Who ya got advancing to the Sweet 16?