Home > Current Updates > Inside the Bracket: Battle 4 Atlantis preview

Inside the Bracket: Battle 4 Atlantis preview

dave1In this edition of Inside the Bracket, let’s take a peak at the 2013 Battle 4 Atlantis:

Teams: Kansas, Wake Forest, Villanova, USC, Tennessee, UTEP, Xavier, Iowa

Favorite: Kansas – The Jayhawks earned a No. 1 seed in our preseason bracket projection and have already beaten Duke on a neutral court.  Even in a deep and talented field, Andrew Wiggins and company will be favored in any game they play in the Bahamas.  Plus, the bracket sets up nicely for the Jayhawks.  Following the opener with Wake Forest, KU will face either Villanova or USC in the semifinals.  If the Jayhawks play well, expect to see them in the title game.

Contenders: Iowa / Tennessee – This is the year that Iowa is supposed to finish in the top of half of the Big Ten conference and return to the NCAA tournament.  Between now and mid-March we’ll see if those predictions hold true.  Iowa arrives in the Bahamas averaging over 90 points a game, led by Roy Devin-Marble (14 ppg) and Aaron White (13 ppg / 7.6 rpg).  The Hawkeyes are also among the nation’s best in rebounding and assists.  Much like Iowa, this is the year Tennessee is supposed to break through and participate in March Madness.  They opened the season ranked in our Power 24.  Since then, the Volunteers have fallen four points short in a road loss at Xavier and won three at home against lesser competition.  Jordan McRae (21 ppg) and Jarnell Stokes have been the most consistent offensive threats.  Can the Volunteers play like a Top 25 team when it matters?  We’ll find out.

Biggest Opportunities: Villanova / Xavier – Let’s start with X.   The Musketeers joined the new Big East so they’ll have plenty of games with which to build a resume.  That said, we don’t know exactly how the new Big East will look come March.  How much respect will the Selection Committee give the league?  A lot of that depends on how said teams perform.  Which brings us to Atlantis.  Xavier opens with Iowa and could face Tennessee again in the semifinals.  Win those two, and Kansas will likely be waiting.  Point is, Xavier has a chance to put a couple (or trio) of marquee wins on its resume.  Ditto for Villanova, which stayed in the Big East.  The Wildcats don’t have an NCAA-level win yet, but if they beat USC, a shot at Kansas awaits.  That type of victory sticks around a while.

Best Opening Matchup: Xavier-Iowa – It’s hard to ignore two teams with expectations and name recognition.  Semaj Christon (16 ppg) has been terrific for the Musketeers.  Plus, the winner has more chances at resume games.  The loser could leave the Bahamas without playing another NCAA-caliber team.

Action begins at 1:o0 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.  Nothing like some good hoops between turkey and maybe a little football.

Categories: Current Updates
  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: