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Time to take a stand and pick some teams -- The South

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Moving on down the bracket-busting line, it's time for me to look at the South region.

First of all, I will pick Kentucky to go pretty far.  Why?  Because I am a die-hard Wildcat fan and whenever I do this, I try to will them further than they aught to go.  I offer no apologies for my unrealistic optimism.  If I had to fill out a bracket that had Kentucky losing in the first round, I feel sure my penance would be to stand in the smoking areas of Rupp Arena and let patrons who are smokers put their cigarettes out in my unprotected hands.

Self-loathing and masochism aside, here are my choices for the South region:


First round:

Easy ones:

  • Memphis over Texas Arlington -- I don't need to explain this pick, do I?
  • Texas over Austin Peay -- I remember when Western and Austin Peay were in the OVC together, and they were our most hated foe.  The Governors will not have enough for the Burnt Orange.
  • Stanford over Cornell --  The Ivy League and the Pac 10 were at opposite ends of the RPI this year, and the Big Red are not big enough for the Cardinal.
  • Pitt over Oral Roberts -- Oral Roberts hasn't played competition of Pitt's caliber all year.

Tough ones:
  • Mississippi State over Oregon -- Varnado is the difference.  Jamont Gordon needs to play way better than he did against Georgia in the SEC final.
  • Michigan State over Temple -- I am going against my better judgment here.  Sparty is so up and down, they are capable of losing this game by 20 or winning by 30.  This is really a coin flip, I have no faith at all in Michigan State's consistency.

  • St. Mary's over Miami -- This is a very even matchup, maybe even closer than the 8-9 game.  I like the Gaels in this one.
  • Kentucky over Marquette -- I'm betting that Marquette has not seen a team as determined as this, nor a stronger defense

Second Round:
  • Memphis over MSU -- This will be a much tougher game than the Tigers think.
  • Pitt over Michigan State -- If inconsistency doesn't get Sparty in the first game, it will get him against a very consistent and hot Pitt team in the second.
  • Kentucky over Stanford -- Sentimental pick -- so sue me.
  • Texas over St. Mary's -- Texas is a very good basketball team, and though the Gaels are, too, they are in a tough spot here.

Regional Semifinals:
  • Memphis over Pittsburgh -- Memphis plays better defense, and that will be the difference.
  • Kentucky over Texas -- If they can beat the 3, they can beat the 2.

Regional Finals:
  • Memphis over Kentucky -- You didn't think I was going to put them in the Final Four, did you?

There we go.  Comment away.