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NCAA Basketball Tournament Sunday Previews, Open Thread

Alright, you heathens, time to pray.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Rutgers at Clemson
Well done, Rutgers
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to Day 3 of the Madness. Round 2 opens up with a couple of B1G Teams in action early in the day. You’ll notice that all of the games are now in Indy. It was the committee’s decision that no one play in the same place they did for the First Round (any fellow degens out there know this means low first half totals as shooters adjust to new backgrounds). Here’s a bit of a preview of the action:

Big Ten Action

[1] Illinois Fighting Illini vs. [8] Loyola-Chicago Ramblers

12:15pm | CBS | Illinois -7 | O/U 133.5
Midwest Region: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis

BoilerBettor: This is actually the game I look forward to seeing. There will be a fair amount of faux-intrigue given both teams are from the same state. Sister Jean is still going strong at 101. Unfortunately for the Ramblers, they’re gonna need a pretty big miracle to overcome the size and strength of the Illini. I think this game ends up being more of a grind than Illinois fans want to see but ultimately, they move on to the second weekend.

MaximumSam: This could be a real grind. Loyola is going to take the air out of the ball and contest everything. Illini should win, but also need to avoid turnovers and not get overly frustrated.


Who ya got?

This poll is closed

  • 52%
    Illini Cruise and Cover
    (38 votes)
  • 32%
    Illini win but Ramblers keep it close
    (24 votes)
  • 15%
    (11 votes)
73 votes total Vote Now

[9] Wisconsin Badgers vs. [1] Baylor Bears

2:40pm | CBS | Baylor -6 | O/U 138
South Region: Hinkle Fieldhouse, Indianapolis

BoilerBettor: I’ll be completely honest, I thought the Mackey Curse would continue for Wisconsin. It didn’t.

On paper, this is a fairly close matchup. Unfortunately for the Badgers, I think Baylor’s talent is too much to handle. Give me the Bears.

MaximumSam: I think Wiscy has a shot here. Baylor has been merely good since they came back from their COVID pause. They aren’t defending that well and if Wisconson can make their open shots they can win.


This will be interesting?

This poll is closed

  • 37%
    Baylor rolls
    (30 votes)
  • 41%
    Baylor in a squeaker
    (34 votes)
  • 20%
    Badgers in a snoring stunner
    (17 votes)
81 votes total Vote Now

[4] Pur...Damnit.

[10] Rutgers Scarlet Knights vs. [2] Houston Cougars

7:10pm | TBS | Houston -8.5 | O/U 132
Midwest Region: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis

BoilerBettor: I have to think it had to irk Indiana fans to see Kelvin Sampson rolling into Assembly Hall and blowing an opponent out. Rutgers gutted out a win over a pesky Clemson team and now has to try and a Cougar team that is crazy efficient on both ends of the court. I wish them luck.

RU in VA: There’s a lot of drama in this one for a 10-2 seed matchup. Myles Johnson should be allright, after taking a hard fall and tweaking his ankle - but the eyes are all on Houston’s PG, DeJon Jarreau. The defensive player of the year in the AAC didn’t finish their first round game and is doubtful for this one. That’ll help to even the playing field if he can’t go.

Houston plays a modified Rutgers gameplan with more speed and offensive boards. You saw the mirror image last night in the Clemson game, now overclock it 125%. I don’t like Rutgers’ chances here, but hell, someone’s gotta carry the B1G.


Does the dream continue for the Scarlet Knights?

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    Yes, Rutgers pulls the upset
    (59 votes)
  • 28%
    No, Houston wins but doesn’t cover
    (31 votes)
  • 17%
    Nope, Cougars roll
    (19 votes)
109 votes total Vote Now

Other games we’re excited for.

Maybe my colleagues have something because I look at this slate and I find it hard to see much excitement.

Any upset specials?

Texas Tech is actually favored against Arkansas so while it would be an upset from a seeding standpoint, it’s not from a betting perspective.

Enjoy the games. Open thread below. Keep it civil, mmkay?