NCAA Tournament Predictions

Mike AlessandriniCorrespondent IMarch 17, 2009

The NCAA released its March Madness Bracket a few days ago, and people all over North America are filling out their brackets.

I am no different. Last year, I won 10 pools out of 11 that I entered, as I picked Kansas to win it all. This year, however, is extremely tough to predict.

Here are my predictions for this year's NCAA Tournament:


Louisville over Play in winner- No. 16 seed has ever beaten a No. 1 seed. This year will be no different. Louisville has a great team.

Siena over Ohio State- Siena is a very underrated team, and have upset potential. Ohio State has been inconsistent this year.

Utah over Arizona-In my opinion, Arizona should not even be in this tourney. Utah's good size will over-match the Wildcats.

Wake Forest over Cleveland State- Closer game than one may think. In the end however, the Deacons will prove to be too much for Cleveland State.

West Virginia over Dayton- Every team in this tourney from the Big East have great teams. No upset here.

North Dakota State over Kansas-The shocker of the first round. Kansas is very young and inexperienced. The Bison are my Cinderella team this year.

USC over Boston College- USC is a hot team right now. This could be a classic ten over seven upset once again.

Michigan State over Robert Morris- The Spartans will come out flying this March with a solid first-round win.


Louisville over Siena- Louisville is too good of a team to even think about an upset in this game. This game could be close though.

Wake Forest over Utah- Wake Forest is a dangerous team, even though they were inconsistent this season. Utah is not on their level.

North Dakota State over West Virginia- Cinderella keeps dancing! Another shocking win over WVU for the Bison.

Michigan State over USC- The Trojans will be over-matched in this game. The Spartans will move on.


Louisville over Wake Forest-
This will be one of the tournament's best games. High scoring and exciting with the Cards prevailing in the end.

Michigan State over North Dakota State- Cinderella's tournament will end in the Sweet Sixteen with a loss to the Spartans.


Louisville over Michigan State-
Another very good game here. The Cardinals are very dangerous and will over-power the Spartans.


Connecticut over Chattanooga-
 Very convincing win here for the Huskies. Thabeet will have about 10 blocks.

BYU over Texas A&M-Both teams are pretty good in this matchup. I see the Cougars winning by less than four points here.

Northern Iowa over Purdue-The first-round shocker of the West Region. Purdue will show its inconsistency in this game.

Washington over Mississippi State- I'm not buying Mississippi State as a good team. Are they hot? Yes. Are they still going to lose in the first round? Yes.

Marquette over Utah State-The Aggies won the WAC, but Marquette will prove to be too much for them.

Missouri over Cornell- The Tigers will get the ball rolling here with a dominating victory over the Big Red.

California over Maryland- Like Arizona, I don't think the Terps should have been in the Tournament this year. Cal will take this one.

Memphis over Cal State Northridge- The Tigers will blow this game out of the water, probably by twenty or thirty points.


Connecticut over BYU- Another dominating performance here for the Huskies. This train keeps on rolling.

Washington over Northern Iowa- Very close, exciting game here, but the Huskies will prevail in overtime.

Marquette over Missouri- I am not sold on the Tigers this year. The Eagles will pull off a victory in this game.

Memphis over California- The Tigers will put on another great show with a convincing win over the Golden Bears.


Connecticut over Washington-
 Washington will have no answer for Connecticut's offense in this game.

Memphis over Marquette-I see overtime in this game as well. The Tigers will show their strength with an exciting victory.


Connecticut over Memphis-
The Tigers play in a weak conference, and don't play teams like UConn very often. This game will show that.


Pittsburgh over ETSU-
The Panthers will show their toughness in this game with a dominant win.

Tennessee over Oklahoma State-The Vols will outlast the Cowboys in a nail-bighter. Very exciting first-round matchup.

Florida State over Wisconsin- Many people have the upset in this match. I believe that Florida State is a good team, and they showed it by beating UNC.

Xavier over Portland State- This game has upset written all over it, but in the end, I couldn't bet against Xavier here. 

VCU over UCLA- I think UCLA stinks. That is my personal opinion, but I'm sure other will disagree. I'm taking the upset here.

Villanova over American-Villanova has a very good team this year. American didn't luck out on this first-round matchup.

Minnesota over Texas-Virtually a coin-flip in this game. Both teams aren't very good. I'm taking the Gophers.

Duke over Binghamton- Duke is better than most people think. They will win easily in their first-round match.


Pittsburgh over Tennessee-
Although the Vols are not a bad team, the Panthers are too tough for them to handle. I see an easy win here for Pitt.

Florida State over Xavier-The Seminoles have been playing well all year. Xavier has been inconsistent. I'll take the slight upset in this match.

Villanova over VCU- Villanova's balanced lineup will do a great deal for them in this game. The game might be closer than people believe.


Pittsburgh over Florida State-
In an exciting Sweet 16 game, the Panthers will prevail against the Seminoles.

Villanova over Duke-Duke lucked out with potentially two easy matches to start the tourny. The easy matches stop here, as does their title hopes.


Pittsburgh over Villanova-
 This possibly will be the best game of the entire tournament. I'm feeling overtime in this match.


UNC over Radford-
Once again, another top-seed victory in this game. Should be an easy one for the Heels.

Butler over LSU- Hard to predict this game. I'm not fond of LSU, and Butler is always a tough team to play, so I'm going with the No. 9 seed.

Western Kentucky over Illinois-Upset alert on this game. The Hilltoppers will shock the Illini with an exciting win in the first round.

Gonzaga over Akron- This one will not be a close game. I don't see any indication of an upset here.

Arizona State over Temple- Temple is hot, but Arizona State is the better team in the end. I'm going with James Harden's boys.

Syracuse over Stephen F. Austin-The Orangemen will be extremely tired during this tournament, but I still see a first-round victory.

Clemson over Michigan- The Tigers are much better than a No. 7 seed tells you. They will defeat the Wolverines.

Oklahoma over Morgan State- Blake Griffin will show why he is the nation's best player in this game. The Sooners will win big.


UNC over Butler-
The Tar Heels are a much better team than the Bulldogs. A fully healthy UNC is a dangerous team.

Gonzaga over Western Kentucky- No Cinderella story here. Gonzaga will prevail in an exciting match.

Syracuse over Arizona State- The Orange will continue their hot play with a flashy victory over the Sun Devils.

Clemson over Oklahoma- This is my "Davidson over Georgetown pick" (which I picked last year) of 2009. I see a stunning upset here with Clemson prevailing.


UNC over Gonzaga-
Gonzaga is a great team, but are they really better than North Carolina? The answer is, no.

Clemson over Syracuse- Clemson continues to shock the world with another fantastic overtimes win over Syracuse.


UNC over Clemson-In a great ACC matchup, the Tar Heels will come from behind and defeat the Tigers.



Connecticut over Louisville:
Here is March Madness' top game. The Huskies will defeat the Cardinals in more than one overtime.

Pittsburgh over UNC- Both Pittsburgh and North Carolina have extremely good teams. In this game, the Panther's toughness will be too much to handle.


Pittsburgh over Connecticut-
The third time will not be a charm for the Huskies. I believe that Thabeet will foul out as he did in their previous game, and the Panthers will be the kings of the NCAA.