Bracket Predictions East Region

First Round Matchups

#1 Villnova vs #16 Radford

It's 1 vs 16.

Winner: Villanova

#8 Virginia Tech vs #9 Alabama

Virginia tech plays at an average pace and has one of the most efficient offenses in the country. They pass the ball extremely well. They have a great overall defense, but an average 3 point defense. They very rarely foul or turn the ball over, but struggle to force steals or block shots. They are a very poor rebounding team.

They have balanced scoring and a player who can consistently generate free throws.

Alabama plays at an average pace and has a good overall offense, but struggle to pass the ball and shoot 3's. They have an elite overall defense and 3pt defense. They are one of the best shot blocking teams in the country and are above average at getting steals. They are careless with the ball and foul often. They are above average offensive rebounders, but are poor defensive rebounders.

Alabama has an elite scorer, a shot blocker, an offensive rebounder, and two players who can consistently generate free throws.

Winner: Alabama (If Hall plays)

#5 WVU vs. #12 Murray State

West Virginia plays at an average pace, but takes a high number of threes. Overall they have a below average offense, but are average at shooting 3's. Their strength lies in their ability to offensive rebound, block shots, and steal the ball. They have a great overall defense, but are poor at defending the 3 point line.

Murray state plays at a slow pace and has all of the strengths that typical slow paced 12 seed upset teams have. 

Winner:Murray State

#4 Wichita State Vs #13 Marshall

Wichita state will play much better defense and have a huge rebounding advantage. 

Winner: Wichita State

#6 Florida vs #11 St. Bonaventure

St. Bonaventure meets almost all of the common factors of average paced 11 seeds that pull off first round upsets. Additionally, they have an elite 3 point defense, nullifying one of Florida's biggest strengths. Florida is not good at defending 3's. Florida's only hope is for St. Bonaventure to foul often.

Winner: St. Bonaventure

# 3 Texas Tech vs. #14 Stephen F. Austin

This is one of those scenarios where one team is a better version of the other team. Texas Tech is as good or better than SFA in most categories that SFA is strong in. Additionally, TTU has a great 3 point defense and is one of the best teams at forcing steals in the country. SFU is also great at forcing steals, but is extremely turnover prone. 

Winner: Texas Tech

#7 Arkansas vs #10 Butler

These teams are very similar with the key difference of Arkansas having a vastly better defense and Butler being a better defensive rebounder. Neither is great at 3 point defense and Arkansas is the better shooting team.

Winner: Arkansas

#2 Purdue vs # 15 Cal Fullerton

Winner: Purdue

Second Round Matchups

#1 Villnova vs. #9 Alabama

Bama's great defense was able to carry them through the first round, but Villanova is too good all around.

Winner: Villnova

#12 Murray St vs. #4 Wichita State

Murray State should be able to win this won by hitting 3's. Just like WVU, Wichita State is a very poor 3 point defending team. Murray state plays at a slow pace and has almost all of the common traits that two win 12-seeds tend to have. 

Winner: Murray State

#3 Texas Tech vs. #11 St. Bonaventure

This one will be close, but TTU is just slightly better in most areas. They will have a big offensive rebounding advantage in this game and their tendency to draw free throw attempts will combine with St. Bonaventure's high level of fouls.

Winner: Texas Tech

#2 Purdue vs #7 Arkansas

Purdue will slow this game down to their pace and very slowly build a lead. Arkansas will keep it close, but Purdue will slowly pull away with a more efficient offense, better defense, and Arkansas poor defensive rebounding and tendency to foul.

Winner: Purdue

Third Round Matchups

#1 Villanova vs. # 12 Murray State

 No 12-seed has won in this round since 2002. This Villanova team is too good and doesn't have any major weaknesses. 

Winner: Villanova

#2 Purdue vs #3 Texas Tech

Winner: Pudue

Regional Final

# 1 Villanova vs #2 Purdue

Villanova has too many guys who can score. Purdue's 3 point defense is good but it won't be good enough. Villanova will out rebound Purdue and sink their free throws down the stretch to win this one. 

Winner: Villanova


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