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Posted March 25, 2010

2010 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Picks

Kentucky (-8.5) over Cornell (10 units - pick of the year)

Kentucky is going to absolutely obliterate Cornell. Yes, I am a die-hard Wildcat fan, but I know Kentucky is just too much for Cornell in this game. Kentucky's bench is going to outscore Cornell's by at least 10 points. Cornell is going to get out-rebounded by at least 15. How is Cornell going to contain John Wall, Demarcus Cousins and Patrick Patterson? What if Eric Bledsoe gets hot? Darius Miller is playing amazing ball as well (20 points in second round vs. Wake Forest - career high). You give John Calipari a week to prepare for Cornell, and he is going to get his team mentally prepared for this game.

Kentucky had their best performance of the season against Wake Forest and they are clicking on all cylinders. Cornell can't match up with Kentucky athletically and their bench will get absolutely crushed. Cornell also only shot 36 percent from three against Kansas, Syracuse, and Seton Hall - the three most athletic teams on their schedule. Kentucky won't give up easy shots in a game of this magnitude - Calipari won't let it happen. The media loves Cornell, which is great for Kentucky because they will be very motivated. Bet the house on the Cats.

Tennessee (+5) over Ohio State (2 units)

I really think this game is going to be a nail-biter. Tennessee plays good defense and is very well coached by Bruce Pearl. They are athletic and tough. Ohio State has one really good player. Ohio State will advance from this bracket, but Tennessee won't go down without a fight.

Baylor (-4.5) over Saint Mary's (2 units)

Omar Samhan is a nice story, but Ekpe Udoh is the real deal. Baylor is a very well coached team and is very athletic with amazing guard play in LaceDarius Dunn and Tweety Carter. Baylor is good enough defensively to cover the spread and they aren't getting enough love in the media. I like the psychological advantage as well.

Northern Iowa (+100) over Michigan State. (2 units)

Bet the moneyline in this matchup. Michigan State is without their best player and they are only getting respect because they are Michigan State. Northern Iowa is a very smart team and they can match up against the Spartans. The glass slipper stays on Cinderella's foot for another day.

Washington (+4.5) over West Virginia (0 units)

I don't like this line a lot. West Virginia has an overrated coach in Bob Huggins, but they also have superior frontcourt play to the Huskies. I'm staying away.

Syracuse (-6) over Butler (2 units)

Syracuse is the second-best team left in this tournament and I just think they are going to blow out Butler. Wesley Johnson has found his groove and Butler can't rebound.

Xavier (+4.5) over Kansas State (1 unit)

I just don't trust the head coach with an obvious anger issue. He has absolutely no poise and I think his team will self-destruct under pressure.

Purdue (+8.5) over Duke (3 units)

Really big line for two major teams going at it in the Sweet 16. Duke will win, but this game will be much closer than people expect. Purdue has a chip on their shoulder and they have been playing some very good basketball in the tournament. Chris Kramer can lock down Jon Scheyer and I think that's the difference.

Matt McGuire's Recent NFL Draft Blog Entries:

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Top 10 Quarterback Busts - 7/7
NBA Draft vs. NFL Draft - 6/27
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Kentucky 2010 NBA Draft Prospect Blog - 6/1
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2010 NFL Power Rankings Tier - 5/21
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2010 NFL Draft Observations and Telecast Blog - 4/26
2010 NFL Draft Grades: Day 3 - 4/25
2010 NFL Draft Grades: Rounds 1-3 - 4/24
2010 NFL Draft Grades: First Round - 4/23
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Random Round 1 Thoughts and Analysis - 4/23
2010 NFL Draft Class Predictions - 4/22
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Response to Mike Mayock's Redskins-Trent Williams Comment - 4/8
Teams Misevaluating Their Own Quarterbacks - 4/6
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2010 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 Picks - 3/25
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Mel Kiper vs. Todd McShay Debate Revisited - 3/8
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