NCAA Tournament

March Madness 2012 Predictions: Ranked Teams Most Likely to Get Upset Early

LAWRENCE, KS - FEBRUARY 25:  Michael Dixon #11 and Kim English #24 of the Missouri Tigers react during the game against the Kansas Jayhawks on February 25, 2012 at Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images
David DanielsSenior Writer IMarch 9, 2012

Upsets make the NCAA tournament.

They happen every year. Northwest Montana Tech or some school that casual fans have never heard of shocks the nation with a victory over a ranked opponent. Still, despite the trend of successful Cinderellas, many brackets will still be filled out with the lower seed advancing nine out of 10 times.

This year—don’t be that guy. Here are the most likely Top 25 teams to get KO’d early in the Big Dance:

 

Marquette, Georgetown and Notre Dame

Some call it an overrated conference. I call it the "Big East Curse."

Every single season, a highly ranked team out of the Big East falls victim to the latest Cinderella. Last year it was Pittsburgh to Butler. In 2012, Marquette, Georgetown and Notre Dame are the eligible candidates.

The Fighting Irish are a poor scoring and rebounding team—not a good combination. Georgetown just got ousted in their second conference tournament game. Marquette, well, they choke every year.

ROSEMONT, IL - FEBRUARY 06: Head coach Buzz Williams of the Marquette Golden Eagles congratulates Jamil Wilson #0 as he's taken out of a game against the DePaul Blue Demons at Allstate Arena on February 6, 2012 in Rosemont, Illinois. Marquette defeated De
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

 

Missouri and Murray State

What do these two teams have in common? Both are vertically challenged.

In the NCAA tournament, wanting it the most often trumps talent. How do teams gain a hustle edge? By attacking the glass.

Missouri doesn’t have a player on its roster over 6’8” that receives major playing time. Murray State doesn’t have anyone over 6’7” that plays at least 12 minutes. If either team runs into a lengthy front court early in the tournament, their dancing will be short-lived.

OMAHA, NE - FEBRUARY 18: Gregory Echenique #0 of the Creighton Bluejays fights for the ball with Eugene Phelps #4 of the Long Beach State 49ers during their game at CenturyLink Center February 18, 2012 in Omaha, Nebraska. Creighton beat Long Beach State o
Eric Francis/Getty Images

 

Creighton

The Blue Jays are overrated. When their offense can’t take off, they can’t win.

Somehow, someway, they’re currently the No. 19 team in the nation. This is the same squad that suffered a three-game losing streak in February to the "juggernauts" of Northern Iowa, Wichita State and Southern Illinois.

They struggled to take care of business in four out of their last six wins as well. A pair of games went into overtime and the other two were decided by one bucket. Creighton isn’t dominating consistently in the Missouri Valley Conference—they’re due for a letdown.

 

David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.


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