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March Madness 2019: Printable NCAA Bracket, Schedule and Upset Picks

Steve Silverman@@profootballboyFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2019

Javon Bess hopes to lead Saint Louis to a first-round upset.
Javon Bess hopes to lead Saint Louis to a first-round upset.Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

Filling out an NCAA tournament bracket is a right of spring for nearly every sports fan.

Fans want to see exciting matchups throughout the run of the tournament and they have hopes that their alma mater can make a run if it was lucky enough to get its ticket to the Big Dance punched.

However, this annual show is about more than just the entertainment value that the players and coaches provide. It's about being able to say, "I told you so." 

That's what the bracket is all about. Fans print out their 8.5" by 11" sheet of paper and make their picks on a round-by-round process for the purpose of bragging to their friends and showing everyone how smart they are.

Losses are the result of bad luck or bad calls. Wins are the result of superior brain power. It can be a lot of fun when it's not taken too far.

We offer a printable bracket that can be filled out, courtesy of NCAA.com, along with the game-by-game schedule. We also look at several potential upset picks.

Liberty (12) over Mississippi State (5), March 22, 7:15 p.m. ET, Tru TV

The Liberty Flames have captured the best seed in Atlantic Sun history, and that's a major accomplishment for head coach Ritchie McKay.

This team put together a 28-6 record and does an excellent job of sharing the basketball. The Flames will frustrate their opponents as they work the clock until they find the best shot, and that allows them to play with efficiency and precision. 

Forward Scottie James is averaging 13.1 points per game and 8.8 rebounds per game, while guard Caleb Homesley is averaging 12.0 points per game and 2.8 assists per game. If Liberty can do a decent job on defense against the Bulldogs' Quinndary Weatherspoon (18.2 PPG), the Flames should have a decent chance of pulling off the upset.

Saint Louis (13) over Virginia Tech (4), March 22, 9:55 p.m. ET, Tru TV

This may be a bit of a stretch, but we like the Billikens because head coach Travis Ford's team has shown that it can play shut-down defense when it needs to.

That is vital against a Virginia Tech team that features guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker, who is averaging 16.6 points per game and connecting on 47.8 percent of his shots from the field. He gets help from forward Kerry Blackshear, who is putting up 14.7 points per night and hitting 52.7 percent of his shots.

Guard Javon Bess is a scorer for the Billikens who is contributing 15.3 points per game, while guard Jordan Goodwin is averaging 10.6 points per game and 7.5 rebounds per game.

Saint Louis will hound the Hokies, get them off balance and come home with the upset.

Murray State (12) over Marquette (5), March 21, 4:20 p.m. ET, TBS

This is one of the most compelling games of the first round because of the matchup between the Racers' Ja Morant and the Golden Eagles' Markus Howard.

Morant is a brilliant athlete who is averaging 24.6 points and 10.0 assists per game. He is a likely lottery pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. Howard is the leading scorer in the tournament with a mark of 25.0 points per game.

Marquette comes into the tournament with five losses in its last six games, and the team is playing sloppy basketball. Look for the Racers to take advantage of turnovers and oust the Golden Eagles from the tournament.

Saint Mary's (11) over Villanova (6), March 21, 7:15 p.m. ET, TBS

The Gaels are loaded with confidence after beating Gonzaga in the West Coast Conference title game. Since they are coming off a victory over one of the tournament's No. 1 seeds, there is no way they should be intimidated by the defending NCAA champions.

Jay Wright's team is as tough as ever, but it is not as talented as ever. This team has lost too many good players to have a chance to do what it has done by winning two of the last three national championships.

Saint Mary's excels at defending the three-point shot, and this will frustrate the Wildcats. Guard Jordan Ford is averaging 21.3 points per game and shooting 49.4 percent from the floor, while teammate Malik Fitts is averaging 15.3 points per game and 7.6 rebounds per game.

Those two will lead the Gaels to the upset victory.

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