NIT Bracket 2013: Teams That Are Locks to Reach the Final Four of Tournament

Dan Talintyre@@dantalintyreSenior Analyst IIMarch 27, 2013

The NIT Tournament has already thrown up plenty of huge talking points thanks to the upsets, buzzer-beaters and dominant performances seen so far.

The tournament now moves through to the quarterfinals, with all eyes firmly focused on which teams will progress through to the semifinals. Maryland is already through thanks to its win over Alabama, but three other quarterfinals remain—all scheduled to be played on Wednesday.

Read on to see which teams are locks to reach the NIT semifinals in 2013.


Brigham Young University (BYU) vs. Southern Miss

Wednesday, March 27, 8:00 p.m. ET

BYU will take on Southern Miss in its quarterfinal matchup after the No. 4 seed beat Cinderella hopefuls Robert Morris in the second round of the tournament.

Even though Southern Miss was very close to winning Conference USA, there's simply no way it'll be able to stop BYU from winning this one.

BYU has hit 90 points in both of its NIT tournament games so far and averaged a stellar 76.5 points per game during the regular season. What's more, the Cougars have done it on 45.8 percent shooting for the year whilst ranking top 30 in the country for rebounds and assists per game.

Expect BYU to cruise through to the semifinals here.

Predicted winner: BYU 


Iowa vs. Virginia 

Wednesday, March 27, 7:00 p.m. ET

With offense the talk of the first game mentioned here, defense will have it's turn to shine when Iowa takes on Virginia in its NIT quarterfinal matchup. 

And whilst Iowa is doing its best to satisfy the Hawkeyes success-starved fans at the tournament so far, their run will come to an end against the Cavaliers.

Virginia has won its last 19 games at home and will look to extend that streak to 20 here before moving on to Madison Square Garden. The Cavaliers defense has been particularly solid and sound, and they'll be a tough task for the Hawkeyes here to try and knock off.

Roy Devyn Marble will be the man most likely to do that, having scored 52 points in the tournament so far, but not even he will thrive against this tough defense.

Once Virginia shuts Marble down, they'll be good for Iowa on the night.

Predicted winner: Virginia


Baylor vs. Providence

Wednesday, March 27, 9:00 p.m. ET

Baylor will take on Providence for a spot in the final four of the tournament, and much like the other three quarterfinals, there's a very simple question to answer here.

Can the Friars either, a) keep Baylor's offense grounded so that it doesn't score enough points, or b) score enough points to match it with the Bears? Unfortunately for the Friars, the answer will be neither, and Baylor's offense will no doubt prove too much to handle here.

The Bears rank 31st in the country for points scored per game, and average over 100 points per game in the NIT Tournament so far. They have great pure scorers in Pierre Jackson, Cory Jefferson and Brady Heslip, and will likely put up another strong total in this one.

Providence, on the other hand, aren't a great scoring team. They aren't the best shooters, and rely heavily on their defense and turnovers to win games. And against Baylor, that tactic simply isn't going to get them anything other than a lesson in how to run a very dominant attack.

The Friars haven't won a game all season where their opponents have scored more than 72 points whilst Baylor average a total of 74.4 points per game.

Do the math.

Predicted winner: Baylor


Click here to download your printable 2013 March Madness bracket, or follow our live bracket of the 2013 NCAA tournament here. 

Follow all the exciting NCAA tournament action with March Madness Live.


Who do you think will win the 2013 NIT Tournament quarterfinals?

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