NCAA Bracket 2013: Most Surprising Outcomes of the Tournament
After nearly two weeks of grueling action, the 2013 NCAA tournament has finally reached the stage of the Final Four. On the road to Atlanta, we've seen stunning upsets, surprising blowouts and awe-inspiring finishes.
The question is what have been the most surprising outcomes of the 2013 NCAA tournament?
We've seen it all, from a No. 15 seed advancing to a No. 9 seed ending up in the Final Four. We've even seen round of 64 upsets that blew up brackets beyond the point of what anyone could have predicted.
So what were the most surprising outcomes of the tournament?
5. No. 12 Oregon Decimates No. 4 Saint Louis
Entering the round of 32, many expected the Oregon Ducks to give the Saint Louis Billikens trouble. Oregon entered the NCAA tournament as the Pac-12 tournament champions, thus deserving a much higher seed.
No one expected Oregon to beat Saint Louis by 17 points.
Damyean Dotson led the charge with 23 points, while E.J. Singler and Carlos Emory tallied 14 apiece. At the final buzzer, Oregon managed to win 74-57.
Those 74 points came against a Saint Louis team that allowed an average of 58.2 points per contest.
4. No. 4 Michigan Demolishes No. 5 VCU
Entering the round of 32, the most highly anticipated game was between the Michigan Wolverines and Virginia Commonwealth Rams. This outing pitted Naismith award finalist Trey Burke against VCU's vaunted havoc defense.
Contrary to what we believed would transpire, Burke and the Wolverines decimated VCU by a score of 78-53.
This 25-point blowout came by virtue of Michigan's ability to penetrate VCU's defense, move the ball and dominate the glass. Michigan owned a plus-15 rebounding advantage and a plus-11 assist total.
Two Final Four favorites proved to be on different levels.
3. No. 9 Wichita State Takes Down No. 1 Gonzaga
The West Region of the 2013 NCAA tournament field was, arguably, the most polarizing bracket. At the heart of the controversy was the No. 1 seeding handed to the Gonzaga Bulldogs.
Gonzaga did themselves no favor when they made a round-of-32 exit at the hands of the No. 9 Wichita State Shockers.
To be fair, the Shockers have proved to be much more than a fluke by reaching the Elite Eight. They've gone on to defeat La Salle and Ohio State in the following games.
The latter was just as much of a shock as the Gonzaga upset.
Wichita State upset Gonzaga by converting 14 three-pointers and defending the rim with six blocks. This was the most significant upset of the tournament, as a No. 1 seed fell in the round of 32.
This set up the Cinderella story that has yet to end for the Shockers.
2. No. 14 Harvard over No. 3 New Mexico
Entering the 2013 NCAA tournament, one of the most popular picks to make a deep run was No. 3 New Mexico. Led by head coach Steve Alford, the Lobos were one of the most respected defensive units in the nation.
All of those Final Four projections fell devastatingly short when they were upset by Harvard during the round of 64.
Wesley Saunders dropped 18 points, Laurent Rivard tallied 17 and freshman Siyani Chambers picked up seven assists. Together, they helped will the Crimson to a victory over the heavily-favored Lobos.
In turn, Harvard pulled off the first great upset of the 2013 NCAA tournament.
1. No. 15 Florida Gulf Coast Upsets No. 2 Georgetown
For just the seventh time in NCAA tournament history, a No. 15 seed upset a No. 2 seed. Unlike in years past, however, this No. 15 seed was a starless team against one led by a Naismith award finalist.
Florida Gulf Coast upset Otto Porter and the Georgetown Hoyas.
The Hoyas entered the NCAA tournament coming off of a season in which they won a share of the Big East regular-season crown. Porter, who won the Big East Player of the Year award, was a finalist for the Naismith and Wooden awards.
Florida Gulf Coast held Porter to 5-of-17 shooting and dropped 78 points on the nation's 10th-ranked scoring defense en route to a legendary run to the Sweet 16.