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March Madness predictions 2019: Virginia is going to win it all. East Region

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First Round

#1 Duke vs. #16 North Dakota State/North Carolina Central: ” We do not know yet who Duke will playwith, but it is irrelevant because neither ND State nor NC Central have Zion Williamson. Duke does. Pick: Duke
#8 VCU vs. #9 UCF: As is true for every 8/9 match, this one is a tough pick. UCF has Tacko Fall, and while I desperately want to watch him matchup against Zion, ” I believe VCU’s defense does enough to hold on in this one. Pick: VCU
#5 Mississippi State vs. #12 Liberty: The Flames will give Mississippi State a match, but I don’t believe they have enough to conquer Quinndary Witherspoon and the Bulldogs. Pick: Mississippi State
#4 Virginia Tech vs. #13 Saint Louis: The Hokies get Justin Robinson back following a foot injury which sidelined the star guard for the previous 12 games of the year (including the ACC tournament). With Robinson back, VT is going to have the ability to maneuver Nickeil Alexander-Walker back into more of a pure shooter role than a distributor function. Select: Virginia Tech
#6 Maryland vs. #11 Belmont: Maryland is one of those Big Ten teams limping into the tournament as they lost three of the last four games played. Belmont will keep this one close, but can’t get their second NCAA tournament win. Pick: Maryland
#3 LSU vs. #14 Yale: I really need to pick the Bulldogs. Like, really, really wish to select on them. Miye Oni is a baller, and the Elis have the 10th best eFG% from the country. . .but, their defense is not fantastic. LSU still won’t have Will Wade on the sidelines, but I think the Tigers are simply too much in this one. Select: LSU
Guess? The most intriguing thing about this game is that the committee put Richard Pitino against Poppa Pitino’s old squad. Jordan Nwora is the real deal and a whole lot of fun to see. . .yeah. The Cards. Select: Louisville
#2 Michigan State vs. #15 Bradley: Michigan State with no doubt. Select: Michigan State
Second Round
#1 Duke vs. #9 VCU: [checks rosters] Yep, Duke still has Zion Williamson. Pick: Duke
#4 Virginia Tech vs. #5 Mississippi State: Dealing with the Hokies moving to the Sweet 16. Kerry Blackshear continues to be great in the post and Ty Outlaw is among the best three point shooters in the country in 46%. Select: Va Tech
#6 Maryland vs. #3 LSU: Battle of the bigs. I’m extremely here for this game. Maryland’s Jaylen Smith and Bruno Fernando are as great a frontcourt as any in the nation, and they’ll have their hands filled with LSU’s Naz Reid. The Terps will not have enough outside shooting, so I’m going with LSU to move on at a close one. Select: LSU
#2 Michigan State vs. #7 Louisville: The Cardinals somehow squeaked an OT win over the Spartans back in late November, but I don’t think they get the season sweep. Ryan McMahon had 24 points in the win. MSU most likely will not have Kyle Ahrens in the championship due to an accident in the Big Ten title game, but the Spartans have sufficient with Cassius Winston, Nick Ward, and Matt McQuaid. Pick: Michigan State
Sweet Sixteen
#1 Duke vs. #4 Virginia Tech: Now things are getting interesting. Duke lost to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg at the regular season when Duke was without Zion and VT was Robinson. The Hokies will make a game of this, but Duke’s superstars are down the stretch. Select: Duke
#2 Michigan State vs. #3 LSU: Thus much chalk. MSU takes this one in a very physical matchup. Pick: Michigan State
Elite Eight
#1 Duke vs. #2 Michigan State: Should we don’t actually get this game, I’ll be furious. Some were amazed MSU got stuck at the East Region with Duke as the Spartans might have reasonably been a No. 1 seed . Rather, they got paired up with the No. 1 overall seed in the Blue Devils. MSU will make Duke pay for their errors, but Zion hits a game winner late. Select: Duke

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