College hoop fans, it’s time to get those pens and brackets filled in as the best time of the year has finally arrived.
Conference play has officially ended and the madness is about to commence. Last night, the NCAA selection committee has finalized this year’s NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament. Leading the way as the overall #1 seed is the reigning champs, the Villanova Wildcats. The Wildcats led by sophomore guard Jalen Brunson and Big East Player Of The Year Josh Hart will be coming out of the East region as they are planning to continue their historical season as they was able to obtain the most regular season wins (31) by a reigning champion. The other schools that were selected as regional #1 seed of this year’s tournament were the Gonzaga Bulldogs (West region), North Carolina Tar Heels (South region) and Kansas JayHawks (Midwest region).
Powerhouses like the Duke Blue Devils, Arizona Wildcats, Louisville Cardinals and the Kentucky Wildcats were selected as the #2 seeds and are getting hot during the right time of the year. Led by Jayson Tatum, Harry Giles, Grayson Allen and Luke Kennard, the Blue Devils are looking like they finally have the pieces together to make another magical run to the NCAA title game. The Kentucky Wildcats have an dynamic backcourt duo of Malik Monk and De’Aaron Fox who have been raising hell on SEC opponents night in and night out by scoring at will. Meanwhile, the Arizona Wildcats made have their own basketball unicorn in 7’0 freshman center Lauri Markkanen from Finland.
Sleeper squads such as the Michigan Wolverines, UCLA Bruins and Florida State Seminoles are flying under everyone’s radar as many critics can see them make deep runs into the tournament. The Wolverines have been playing inspired ball after their airplane crash in which it is under investigation right now. From having to play in practice uniform to having to waiting for their stuff that was on the plane finally arrive in Indianapolis, Michigan led by Derrick Walton Jr. can be the reason a lot of brackets are ruined as the sleeping #7 seeded team in the Midwest region. But a lot of hoop fans have their eye on the UCLA Bruins as the nation’s highest scoring team was selected as the #3 seed in the South region. The Bruins star point guard Lonzo Ball has been the talk of all sports media as his dad been raving so much about his son that he even called out 2-time NBA MVP Steph Curry. But fans, believed the hype because the Bruins can flat out let it rain and light up the scoreboard as the coach’s son Bryce Alford along with Ball and TJ leaf has the potential to shoot their way to an Final Four appearance.
Hoop fans, make sure you do some homework before you fill those brackets out as this tournament has the making to be a wild wacky one for the ages. But for now, make sure you have your glass shoe ready as tomorrow begins the First Four round of the 2017 NCAA Tournament as Kansas State & Wake Forest plays each other to see who will go on as the #11 seed and face the #6 seed Cincinnati Bearcats in the South region. In addition, Mount St. Mary will face New Orleans to see who will go on as the #16 seed to face the #1 seed Villanova Wildcats. Need a bracket to fill one out? Here’s a blank one you can use for your guide to an 2017 NCAA Championship journey.