Experts’ Sweet 16 Predictions for March 23 Games

Basketball is finally back in its beautiful, March Madness form. We have a fantastic slate of four games lined up for tonight to kick off the Sweet Sixteen. Some of the site experts threw together their professional opinions and predictions for the games.

Midwest

  1. Oregon vs. 7 Michigan

Mark: Oregon 72, Michigan 68

So I have an entire article on this. I think the Ducks can control the pace to slow down the scorching hot offense of the Wolverines. Quack it up, ladies and gentlemen. Quack it up all the way to the Elite Eight.

PJ: Michigan 78, Oregon 72

No one is going to stop Michigan at this point. They are a Final Four lock. Boucher’s absence will finally matter and the Wolverines will continue their run.


Jack: Michigan 83, Oregon 76

This will be one of those back and forth games that eventually lands Michigan on the right side of the sea-saw. They’ll hit their free throws down the stretch, and Dorsey comes up one shot too short. Behind a big game from Walton Jr., Wolverines prevail.

  1. Kansas vs. 5. Purdue

Mark: Kansas 78, Purdue 69

So I REALLY didn’t think Purdue was going to make it to the Sweet 16, but Biggie is a monster. I think Frank Mason and Josh Jackson are just too much for the Boilermakers, though. Rock Chalk.

PJ: Purdue 70, Kansas 66

Purdue takes a thriller by four because Caleb Swanigan tallies 50 points and 35 rebounds. Chalk it up. Boilermakers.

Jack: Kansas 80, Purdue 66

Guard play wins in March. The Jayhawks have Frank Mason III. Please and thank you.

West

  1. Gonzaga vs. 4. West Virginia

Mark: Zags 68, WVU 60

Press Virginia has a real challenge against a really good backcourt for Gonzaga. I don’t think they get all of turnovers they are used to getting. In the halfcourt, look for the big dog, Przemek Karnowski, to feast.

PJ: Gonzaga 70, WVU 63

Gonzaga has the guards to handle the press and the bigs to neutralize WVU’s offensive rebounding. Gonzaga will definitely cover. -3 is the lock of the year.

Jack: Gonzaga 62, WVU 60

This has the makings of an instant classic, as Nigel Williams-Goss hits a floater in the lane for the win. The Zags barely overcome the Mountaineer press, and despite Jevon Carter’s best efforts, Gonzaga prevails.

2 Arizona vs. 11. Xavier

Mark: Arizona 75, Xavier 66

Xavier felt like a lost cause after Sumner went down and Xavier went from contender to bubble team in a hurry. However, after an absolute waxing of Florida State, it looks like Trevon Bluiett can get those Musketeers to do anything. However, the Wildcats have way too much talent.

PJ: Arizona 72, Xavier 68

People are still doubting Xavier, which is understandable without Sumner, but a tad misplaced. This game is going to be MUCH closer than people will give it credit for. Zona will just outlast the undermanned Musketeers, though.

Jack: Arizona 84, Xavier 80

The Wildcats are my pick to win it all, and I think they survive a Musketeer barrage and sneak into the Final 8.

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