Mar 2, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Massachusetts Minutemen forward Maxie Esho (1) rebounds in the first half against the Xavier Musketeers at the Cintas Center. Umass defeated Xavier 77-72. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

Where Will UMass End Up?



A college basketball article?!?!?! Well, I have a caught a bit of march madness fever, so we may take a look at where UMass may be placed in this year’s NCAA tournament. We will know soon once Selection Sunday closes today, but it is always fun to try and predict what first or second round matchups each team may face come tourney time.

As of right now, Joe Lunardi has UMass slotted as the 8th seed  in the East bracket, playing Pittsburgh to open up the tournament. Michigan is the No.1 seed in that bracket, but that can change after tomorrow’s Big Ten Championship game.

The game’s tomorrow don’t have an effect on which bracket UMass will be placed in. They are a lock for that East bracket, and so it Pitt. It seems that these two teams will be playing each other in the first round (I refuse to call it the second round) come Thursday or Friday. If I were UMass, I would be rooting for a Michigan win tomorrow. As good as Michigan can be, they don’t play much defense in comparison to a Wisconsin or an Arizona.

Speaking of Arizona. Their loss last night to UCLA in the Pac-12 Championship should have no bearing on their No.1 seed status. However, a Michigan win, coupled with the Arizona loss, could bump Michigan up to the second ranked No. 1 seed. That could mean a shift in brackets for both teams, and Arizona would possibly play UMass in the second round. Arizona is one of the best defensive teams in the nation, and don’t live and die with the three pointer like Michigan does on some nights.

Baylor’s loss to Iowa State in the Big 12 Championship could have an impact on where UMass is placed. Right now, Baylor is the 7th seed in that East bracket, and perhaps the committee will move UMass up to seven if they feel Baylor was overmatched in last night’s contest. Unlikely, but then the complexion of the bracket for UMass looks very different. They would get St. Joseph’s in the first round, a team they should run all over, and then get the Villanova Wildcats in the next round. Sounds a lot better than playing Pitt./Michigan.

So the fun game of trying to see where UMass may end up, was actually not so fun! But, it will be interesting to see what No.1 seed they may go up against if they can get past Pitt. Time to get ready for some stress-inducing college basketball for fans all over the country.

Tags: 2014 NCAA Tournament Joe Lunardi March Madness UMass University Of Massachusetts

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