The Louisville Cardinals may have been given the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament, but the selection committee didn’t do them any favors.
The Cardinals' resume certainly earned them a top seed. They hold a 29-5 record, finishing with a conference record of 14-4 in the Big East. They were able to overcome a 16-point deficit in the Big East championship game to win the tournament.
However, the No. 1 seed in the Midwest doesn’t mean much. The competition will be fierce, and there are several teams in the region that could be heading to Atlanta when it’s all said and done.
The Duke Blue Devils hold the No. 2 seed in the Midwest and are just as good as any of the No. 1 seeds in the tourney. With the return of Ryan Kelly, this team is back to its full potential The combination of Kelly, Mason Plumlee and Seth Curry make this team a dangerous powerhouse.
Not to mention that Duke has been one of the most dominant teams over the past several decades in the NCAA.
At the No. 3 seed, the Michigan State Spartans will be making their own case as a Final Four contender. Keith Appling has been a tremendous guard, running the offense and averaging 13.6 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. Gary Harris has been one of the most exciting freshmen in the country, especially from downtown. He is averaging 12.9 points per game on 46.3 percent shooting and 41.3 percent from behind the arc.
Even at the No. 4 seed, Saint Louis has a real shot at representing the Midwest region, finishing the season on a 24-1 tear to end with a 27-6 record. The Billikens went 5-1 against the Top 25 teams and had a conference record of 13-3. They may not have a true star player, but they play solid, fundamental basketball and have a great turnover margin.
Other teams such as Oregon, Creighton and Cincinnati make this the most intimidating region in the tournament. Louisville will need to be at the top of its game throughout the first few rounds if the Cardinals want a shot at playing in the National Championship.
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