Final Four 2021: Predicting Last 2 Teams for Updated BracketMarch 30, 2021
It took three rounds, but No. 15 Oral Roberts was eventually snuffed out of March Madness. With them, it appears that all upset dreams have been extinguished as well. No higher-seeded team has lost in the Elite Eight thus far, and the two remaining top seeds don't seem likely to either.
No. 2 Houston ruined No. 12 Oregon State's Cinderella run, while No. 1 Baylor outlasted No. 3 Arkansas (possibly cursed for denying ORU a chance at history). Now, two matchups remain to lock in the Final Four.
First, No. 6 USC will face No. 1 Gonzaga, and then No. 11 UCLA meets No. 1 Michigan. Here's how the updated bracket looks and why two more top seeds should make it into a stacked Final Four.
2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Bracket
No. 2 Houston vs. No. 1 Baylor
No. 1 Gonzaga or No. 6 USC vs. No. 1 Michigan or No. 11 UCLA
Through the first three rounds, Gonzaga and USC have yet to win a game by fewer than double digits. The two teams haven't just made their way through their brackets, they've absolutely run through them.
However, in a meeting between two seemingly unstoppable forces, the Bulldogs should come out on top.
Boasting the best offense in the nation, Gonzaga averaged 91.8 points per game this season (first in the country), thanks to 18.6 assists per game (second) and a 55.1 field-goal percentage (first). The team remains undefeated and has the firepower to outduel the Trojans (outside of Evan Mobley's territory).
USC's Mobley is a projected top-two pick in the NBA draft for a reason: The explosive big man scores, rebounds, assists and swats shots with ease. A balanced USC had four double-digit scorers against Oregon in the Sweet 16, but it's his presence that cements the Trojans defense.
That's where Gonzaga's Corey Kispert and Jalen Suggs come into play—arguably the nation's best shooter and best offensive facilitator, respectively.
All four of Gonzaga's leaders in minutes per game shot over 32.2 percent from three this season, led by Kispert at a nasty 46.2. Helmed by Suggs' playmaking, the Bulldogs should be able to disrupt USC's defense, withstand their inconsistent offense and clinch a trip to the Final Four.
Neither Michigan nor UCLA has had as easy a prance through the Big Dance as USC and Gonzaga, but both have impressed. Led by balanced scoring, each team has made it to the Elite Eight, but it's the Wolverines who should move forward.
UCLA's Johnny Juzang has been a star in the tournament, drilling threes and hitting double-digit points in each contest. Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Jules Bernard have been potent as well but far more inconsistent.
Most importantly, the team's defense showed serious cracks against Alabama, which scored 78 despite missing 14 of 25 free throws.
A deep Michigan roster has gotten points from different places, but the team has proved its resilience in every game. Hunter Dickinson is a menace in the paint, guards Eli Brooks and Chaundee Brown have taken turns getting buckets and Franz Wagner is just a bona fide Swiss Army knife.
Unless Michigan shockingly suffers from the same free-throw bug as Alabama, they should prove too deep and balanced to grant UCLA the upset.