Best Team: Memphis Tigers

Most Underrated Team: BYU Cougars

Most Overrated Team: Maryland Terripins

Dark-horse: Purdue Boilermakers

Best Coach: John Calipari, Memphis

Best Player: Hasheem Thabeet, UCONN

Upset Special: Missippi State over Washington


Summary: This is easily the most stacked region this year. Each of its top 6 seeds have Elite Eight potential. UCONN and Memphis are both top five teams in the country. This should be the most entertaining region. The Memphis Tigers are my favorite here. And the reason is simple: Defense. The Tigers are the best defensive team in the country, and it’s not that close. They are four points ahead in defensive efficiency (points allowed per possession) than the second place team, Louisville. To put this in perspective it is the same difference between the tenth best team (Michigan State) and the thirty seventh best team (UCLA). Additionally, they are at least 3 points better than any team since 2004! This is an amazing defensive team. And defense wins championships. I have them playing an incredibly tough UCONN team in the Elite Eight. UCONN is the third best team but I think Memphis will beat them and advance to the final four. I put Maryland as the most overrated but I really don’t think anyone in this region is, this region is stacked with good teams. BYU is the most underrated team and could give UCONN and scare in round 2. If Purdue were in any other region I’d like them a lot, now that Robbie Hummel is healthy. As I said, Memphis advances here.


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