March Madness 2013: Top Teams Destined to Be Upset
In any NCAA tournament, upsets are going to happen. It's just a fact. Even if a team is highly ranked going into the big dance, their chances of winning it all are equally as strong as them suffering an early exit.
For this year's upcoming tourney, the pool of teams is no exception. Some teams are sure to have top seedings going in, but to say that they'll go far is really luck of the draw. Either way, picking them to get to the Final Four seems like a huge crapshoot.
Take the Gonzaga Bulldogs, for example. Sure, they may be No. 1 in the latest AP Ranking, but they play in one of the weakest conferences and have no signature wins. When it comes time to play a team from a more competitive conference, they could be in a great deal of trouble.
Similarly, just how long can the Georgetown Hoyas ride their strong defense and clear lack of scoring?
The fact is that a small handful of teams are definitely going to seem like Final Four locks in March Madness this year, but are going to be in for a rude awakening once they find themselves headed home early after losses in one of the initial rounds.
Michigan is currently ranked at No. 6 and should get a decent seeding for the tournament. However, to say that the Wolverines will go on a title run is a bit of a stretch.
Yes, the team did go 25-6 overall, and 12-6 in conference, but the losses Michigan suffered featured some notable poor performances against top teams. Not only did Ohio State defeat them on Jan. 13, but the Wolverines also lost to Wisconsin on Feb. 9 and to Michigan State on Feb. 12.
This can be attributed to the streaky nature of guard Tim Hardaway Jr., who only shot 30 percent from the field over those three losses. Unless he can find a consistent groove and become half of a deadly tandem with teammate Trey Burke, Michigan could soon see its championship hopes dashed.
Yes, the Bulldogs are the No. 1 team in the nation, but that doesn't take away from the fact they will be eaten alive in the big dance. The West Coast Conference does not provide much in terms of competition, and all but eight of Gonzaga's wins came by a double-digit margin.
That isn't to say that the team will get stunned in the Round of 64, but head coach Mark Few's squad is sure to receive quite the wakeup call once it comes time to play an elite squad from the Big Ten, ACC, Big East, or wherever. Blowout wins are hard to come by once the tournament begins, and chances are that Gonzaga will learn that the hard way.
Throw in that the team's defense as a whole is weak, and it's hard to see them getting further than the Sweet Sixteen.
The Hoyas play great defense, but are incredibly lacking in the scoring department. This is because head coach John Thompson III uses the Princeton offense, in which constant ball movement allows little in terms of scoring opportunities.
Just the same, the team has gone from being one not expected to do well at the beginning of the season to the Big East regular-season champion and No. 5 in the latest rankings. Thanks to star forward and key finisher Otto Porter, Georgetown is definitely a team that could make some noise in the tournament.
Unfortunately, this is where their lack of a strong offense will come back to bite them. Strong defense means nothing without a solid scoring attack to help support it, and the Hoyas are going to be in trouble once they have to face a team that likes to play a fast-paced game and score points in bunches.
At that point, the Princeton offense will be of no help when the deficit continues to grow and the defense has no answer.
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