Readers of Music City Drive-In, beware. As a University of Kentucky alumnus, it pains me to write about the NCAA Tournament as I am still in mourning. Content rolls on though, and we have a tournament to reseed. There have been a lot more upsets than just St. Peter’s over Kentucky, as this seems to be a tournament of more parity than we have seen in quite some time. There are four double-digit seeds in the Sweet 16, which is more than I can remember in any tournament. However, we still have plenty of heavy hitters still left in this iteration of the NCAA Tournament. There are multiple 1 and 2 seeds left as well as a handful of low digit seeds as well. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s reseed some teams.
1 – Gonzaga Bulldogs
Gonzaga has rolled along in this tournament. They won an absolute battle against Memphis, which proves that they have the toughness to win this whole thing. The narrative that Gonzaga’s conference does not prepare them for the tournament is dead.
2 – Kansas Jayhawks
Remy Martin has taken this team to another level. If the Jayhawks get this type of play from Martin for the rest of the way, Kansas will be a tough out.
3 – Arizona Wildcats
Bennedict Mathurin almost killed a man in the round of 32. They struggled against TCU, but ultimately pulled out the win. It is survive and advance for a reason, and the Wildcats did it.
4 – Villanova Wildcats
Collin Gillespie has come alive for Villanova. He has been the steady player the Wildcats need to win a national championship, and Jay Wright will rely on him to get them there.
5 – Duke Blue Devils
Jeremy Roach, welcome back. For the Blue Devils to give Coach K a swan song to remember, they needed another veteran to step up to complement the trio of freshmen of Paolo Banchero, Trevor Keels and AJ Griffin. Roach will be needed even more if AJ Griffin misses any time.
6 – Texas Tech Red Raiders
The Red Raiders are still one of the best defensive teams in the country. As long as they keep their opponent in the low 60-point range, they are going to go farther in this tournament. Bryson Williams gives them an inside force to go up against any big man in the country.
7 – Houston Cougars
I really do not know how Houston is doing it. After losing Treman Mark and Marcus Sasser to season ending injuries, this team was written off as an after-thought in a bad conference. Fast forward three months, and the Cougars are still alive with Jamal Shead and Fabian White leading the way.
8 – Purdue Boilermakers
It seems that it has been set up for Purdue to walk to the Final Four. They have St. Peters in the Sweet 16, but the last time we assumed the Peacocks would fall they shocked Kentucky and Murray State. The big duo of Zach Edey and Trevion Williams will make a difference for this squad.
9 – UCLA Bruins
The UCLA run continues. Jaime Jacquez rolled his ankle in the round of 32, but it seems like he will be ready to play North Carolina in the Sweet 16. If he is 100%, the Bruins have a great shot at advancing.
10 – Providence Friars
The luck of the Friars hasn’t run out just yet. The kings of the close game keep on winning, except that their two games this tournament haven’t been all that close. They will look to knock off Kansas, and if they can keep it close then their experience in close games will come in handy.
11 – Michigan Wolverines
The team that everyone ranked in the top-5 at the beginning of the year has finally showed up. Juwan Howard has the Wolverines playing their best ball of the season, and Hunter Dickinson is playing like an All-American again. The talent level on this team can carry them to a national title, it remains to be seen if Howard can coach them there.
12 – Arkansas
All aboard the Muss Bus. The last SEC team remaining (remember how “strong” the SEC was supposed to be?) has a shot to redeem the conference with a win over Gonzaga. JD Notae will have to figure something out against the wings of Gonzaga for the Razorbacks to have a shot.
13 – North Carolina Tar Heels
What a turnaround from that early January rut that the Tar Heels were in. They took down the defending champion Baylor Bears in a truly impressive performance. Everyone left them for dead after they gave up a 25-point lead, but they were able to rally and win in overtime to advance.
14 – Miami Hurricanes
Jim Larranaga has a scrappy bunch of guards on this team. Charlie Moore torched Auburn in the round of 32 to lead this team to the huge upset of the Tigers. If he can put up the same performance against Iowa State, Miami should punch their ticket to the Elite 8.
15 – Iowa State Cyclones
The Cyclones have come all the way back from their big slump throughout Big-12 play to make it to the Sweet 16. After losing 8 straight games from mid-January to mid-February, they have found a rhythm during the most important time possible. Their defense can carry them to the next round, if they can stop the aforementioned Charlie Moore.
16 – St. Peter’s Peacocks
I hate putting the Peacocks this low, they are just so much fun. Shaheen Holloway is a future coaching star, and he has this team playing incredible defense. Doug Edert’s moustache is already the stuff of legend in this tournament, so expect them to come out fighting once again against Purdue.