2014 NCAA Tournament Picks: East



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2014 NCAA Tournament Bracket Breakdowns:
South | West | Midwest | East

2014 NCAA Tournament Picks – East Bracket

By Walter Cherepinsky – @walterfootball


NCAA Tournament Picks: East Bracket First Round



No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 16 Coastal Carolina
Coastal Carolina sounds like a nice place to vacation. Unfortunately, it does not sound like a hotbed of basketball.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 1 Virginia


No. 8 Memphis vs. No. 9 George Washington
Memphis has lost three of five games heading into the tournament, while George Washington has won four of five. I’ll take the slight underdog.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 9 George Washington


No. 5 Cincinnati vs. No. 12 Harvard
Harvard is a very talented team that is – no joke – capable of making a Final Four run. The team is well coached, ranks 55th in offense and 33rd in defense, and can hit threes as well as anyone. They also force tons of turnovers. Oh, and they’re better than Cincinnati.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 12 Harvard


No. 4 Michigan State vs. No. 13 Delaware
Everyone on ESPN has Michigan State winning the entire tournament, so how can it possibly lose to Delaware?

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 4 Michigan State




No. 6 North Carolina vs. No. 11 Providence
I’m wondering if Providence used too much energy to win the Big East Tournament. It reminds me of when Jerry McNamara and Syracuse went on that ridiculous run and then lost right away in the first game of the NCAA Tournament. North Carolina is the superior squad anyway.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 6 North Carolina


No. 3 Iowa State vs. No. 14 N.C. Central
I’m not going to do it because I don’t have the balls, but if you’re going to pick a 14-3 upset, make it this one. N.C. Central is the best of all the No. 14 seeds, while Iowa State is the worst of all the No. 3 seeds.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 3 Iowa State


No. 7 Connecticut vs. No. 10 Saint Joseph’s
I can’t see Shabazz Napier losing his first NCAA Tournament game. Besides, Connecticut’s 11th-ranked defense should be able to disrupt a Joe’s offense that turns the ball over a lot.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 7 Connecticut


No. 2 Villanova vs. No. 15 Milwaukee
Someone I followed on Twitter – can’t remember who – has Milwaukee upsetting Villanova. I immediately unfollowed them. Nah, just kidding. I’m not a pretentious douche who unfollows people to make a statement (OK maybe I am a bit, but I still don’t unfollow people.)

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 2 Villanova





NCAA Tournament Picks: East Bracket Second Round



No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 9 George Washington
Virginia has stretches in which it can’t score at all, so George Washington’s 44th-ranked defense could provide a challenge. It wouldn’t shock me at all if the Cavaliers lost here, but picking an 8 or a 9 to upset a top seed isn’t smart based on the odds.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 1 Virginia


No. 4 Michigan State vs. No. 12 Harvard
Ugh. I wanted to pick Harvard to go to the Sweet 16, but they have to deal with Michigan State in the second round. An upset here wouldn’t surprise me, but the Spartans are on fire now, thanks to everyone finally getting healthy. Michigan State was ranked near the top of the preseason polls for a reason, but it underachieved because of injuries. That won’t be a problem now.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 4 Michigan State




No. 3 Iowa State vs. No. 6 North Carolina
Both of these teams are overrated right now, but I trust Iowa State to get here than North Carolina. These teams are about even, so the tie-breaker goes to Iowa State.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 3 Iowa State


No. 2 Villanova vs. No. 7 Connecticut
Villanova is a trendy pick to get upset early in the NCAA Tournament, but people are disregarding the fact that they are just one of four teams (Wichita State, Louisville, Florida) to be in the top 20 in both offense and defense. The Wildcats’ major weakness is defending the three – which explains why Creighton swept them – and while Connecticut has the personnel to take advantage of that, I’m not a fan of the Huskies’ carelessness with the basketball. They just turn the ball over too much, and that will ultimately cost them.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 2 Villanova





NCAA Tournament Picks: East Bracket Sweet 16



No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 4 Michigan State
I hate to sound like an ESPN talking head, but count me in on Michigan State upsetting Virginia in the Sweet 16. Virginia has issues scoring the basketball, while the Spartans are catching fire just at the right moment.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 4 Michigan State


No. 2 Villanova vs. No. 3 Iowa State
I’m picking the upset again. I’m taking Villanova. Wait, aren’t the Wildcats the better seed? Sure, but every single person on ESPN’s Bracketology had Iowa State in the Elite Eight, so this feels like an upset. There are just too many flaws with the Cyclones, including poor defense, rebounding and free-throw shooting. Besides, Iowa State doesn’t have the three-point shooting to exploit Villanova’s sole weakness.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 2 Villanova



NCAA Tournament Picks: East Bracket Elite Eight



No. 2 Villanova vs. No. 4 Michigan State
Iowa State didn’t have the three-point shooting to beat Villanova, but Michigan State does, ranking 11th in threes. Once again, the Spartans are just coming together and playing their best basketball now, so they are better than most of their metrics indicate anyway.

2014 NCAA Tournament Pick: No. 4 Michigan State




NCAA Tournament Picks: South | West | Midwest | East | Final Four

2014 NCAA Tournament Bracket Breakdowns:
South | West | Midwest | East






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