The Beast Of the East turned out to be not so beastly. Villanova seemed to have everyone’s love and then they ran into 8 seed NC State. I had a front row seat on the Nova bandwagon and was just kind of “meh” with NC State. Nova was a team that I considered to be one of the most offensively versatile in the tournament and NC State had to dig out of a hole against LSU. You know the saying, Any Given Sunday. Nova ran into Any Given Saturday.
Michigan St should be expected to be in any game played in March as long as Izzo is their coach. Their game against Virginia was not the exception. Virginia had a great season, but they never truly impressed me. My thought going into the tournament was that they were the second most vulnerable 2 seed behind Kansas. And then they ran into Izzo in March. This Spartan team is poised for at least an Elite 8 run at this point.
Kudos to both Louisville and Oklahoma for taking care of business. Dayton was poised to be this year’s Cinderella and Oklahoma made sure that their clock struck midnight. Lon Kruger has made a Sweet 16 with four different programs. Coaching plus talent is always a deadly combination. Louisville took out a hard nosed Northern Iowa team. Teams that sleep on Missouri Valley teams (ahem…Kansas) tend to regret it. Coach Pitino had his team ready to go and Louisville lives to see another day.
The East Region teams that move to the Sweet 16 are NC State, Louisville , Oklahoma and Michigan St.