It's been a long and arduous road for the teams comprising the 2014 NCAA tournament's Final Four. The end is in sight for each, and one more decisive victory will guarantee a spot in the finals.
This year marks a great deal of variety, as each remaining team is vastly different from one another. Florida continues its dominant defensive play, Wisconsin thrives on steady fundamentals, Connecticut features a high-octane offense and Kentucky has a group of freshmen maturing with each contest.
The tournament has been highly unpredictable to this point, and more of the same should be expected during this year's two Final Four matchups. Let's take a look at an updated tournament bracket, and see what experts from around the web are saying about these contests.
The complete 2014 NCAA tournament bracket can be found on CBSSports.com.
So, what are the experts saying about the Final Four. Who will move on to the finals? Why is one team favored over another? What are the X-factors for each contest? All of these questions and more are answered by the college hoops gurus from around the web.
Rece Davis, Jay Williams, Seth Greenberg, Jay Bilas and Dick Vitale debate which teams will advance to the finals in this video:
- Florida: 3
- Connecticut: 1
- Wisconsin: 1
- Kentucky: 3
Bobby Gonzalez of SheridanHoops.com
Gonzalez is certainly on a hot streak predicting the outcomes of tournament games. After picking all eight Sweet 16 winners correctly, he's at it again to predict the Final Four.
Coach Bobby Gonzalez went 8-for-8 with his Sweet 16 picks. Who does he like in the Final Four this weekend? http://t.co/eHZAeVE3ng— Chris Sheridan (@sheridanhoops) April 3, 2014
Here's what Gonzalez thinks of this year's Final Four matchups, according to his article on SheridanHoops.com:
I'm predicting Florida will beat UConn in a revenge game from their last loss that preceded this 30-game win streak, and then in the other semifinal, although all coaches including myself are happy for an old school great coach like Bo Ryan (a coach I've done some clinics with who I have the utmost respect for, especially having spent time coaching at the Division 3 level), I still have the great coach John Calipari and this year's version of the Fab 5 getting past Wisconsin to set up a fourth head-to-head game and an all-SEC final with the Gators.
Picks: Florida and Kentucky
Bleacher Report Roundtable
Bleacher Report's own college hoops experts recently shared their thoughts regarding this year's Final Four. Jason King, Kerry Miller and C.J. Moore make their picks and give full analysis here.
Florida gets a unanimous decision to reach the finals. C.J. Moore explains his thoughts:
Every advantage Connecticut has had in the tournament will be negated by Florida's defense. It's almost impossible to stop Napier entirely, but Wilbekin has as good a chance as any. Daniels has had a great tournament, but Florida's 4 men match up well with him.
The Gators have better all-around talent, better experience and Donovan has never lost a national semifinal. He'll be 4-0 in those games after Saturday.
The experts are split when it comes to Kentucky against Wisconsin. Here's Kerry Miller's reasoning for selecting the Badgers:
As long as Wisconsin can keep Kentucky off the free-throw line—the Wildcats attempted just 11 freebies against Michigan as compared to a season average of 30.1 per game—the Badgers will play good enough defense and prevent enough offensive rebounds to advance to the national title game.
- Florida: 3
- Connecticut: 0
- Wisconsin: 1
- Kentucky: 2