RNR 24 - PPV Replay Available to Order Until May 5thBUY HERE

Every Single Damn Thing You Need To Get The Juices Flowing For The Best Day Of Games So Far In The NCAA Tournament

This is it, this is the last day we have with the multi-screen need in the college basketball season. Embrace it, cherish it. It's a long 8 months until we're back frantically staring at multiple screens. Yesterday had intriguing games for sure, but today is the day that I think should be the best day of the Tournament. Mostly because we have 3 games that are chalk. It's rare we get that but when the only Cinderella is the ACC Tournament champions, it makes for days like this. 

Schedule


Bracket


Order of the best games today

1. Tennessee/Creighton

2. Purdue/Gonzaga

3. Duke/Houston

4. NC State/Marquette

Let's be honest, it doesn't matter. You can put these in any order that's how loaded today is. 

Five Most Entertaining Players Today

This isn't about the best. Every March someone takes over and you can't look away from the screen. Sure, they might be stars, some might be March legends. Either way we always get them and you never know where it's coming from. 

1. DJ Burns (NC State)

2. Tyler Kolek (Marquette)

3. Ryan Nembhard (Gonzaga)

4. Emanuel Sharp (Houston)

5. Jared McCain (Duke)

Storylines/Previews for each game today

1. Mark Few vs Zach Edey

I know Mark Few is a coach and Zach Edey is a player, in fact he's a tall player. But you know what Mark Few did? He kicked Hunter Dickinson's ass just putting him in ball screens and moving him all over. You know what Few is going to do? Adapt and attack Zach Edey. It's not a secret that the goal is to put Edey in as many ball screens as possible. I'm sure we'll see more of it when Graham Ike gets in foul trouble, it's almost a lock that happens. So this is where I think the Ryan Nembhard transfer needs to be the most valuable. Ever since the Kentucky win, Nembhard has been the ultimate playmaker for Gonzaga. He's getting others involved and picking his spots to attack. You can spread Purdue out playing guys like Gregg and Watson and Huff more than Ike obviously. We know what Purdue is going to do. It's the Zach Edey show with help from Braden Smith and then hope one of Loyer/Jones steps up. 

2. Who recovers from the shooting disaster quicker? 

Creighton's shooting stats against Oregon are a bit skewed because of the double overtime. They were awful shooting the ball until late. Tennessee looked like every other Rick Barnes team in March, except they actually won the game. Both are prolific offenses. Both can shoot the shit out of the ball. Who recovers quicker and figures it out first? I know they both had almost a week off, but it's the first time we're seeing these guys on the floor since Saturday. Still think it comes down to Trey Alexander. He's one of the most underrated players in the country it seems like. If he settles in early and can attack Knecht and more important be the one guarding him, Creighton is in a good spot. 

3. Houston's gonna attempt to beat the shit out of Duke

I mean this in a physical sense. You know how Duke lost to Tennessee last year in the Tournament? Uros Plavsic quite literally beat the shit out of Filipowski and Duke never got comfortable. The difference between Houston and that Tennessee team? Well, talent, mostly. Jamal Shead is one of the best players in the country, regardless of position. Cryer and Sharp can shoot the shit out of the ball. We know what they do defensively. They play so physical you start to think there's a foul every play only to realize they are just stripping the ball and having it fall off of another guy's knees out of bounds. I'm curious to see who Shead guards. Do you put him on McCain who has been the go-to scorer for Duke? Do you put him on Roach and try to chop the head off there? Do you just say fuck it and let him decide who he guards? That seems smart because everyone on Houston defends. This game feels like we'll know how it's going to be 5 minutes in or so. If Duke comes out like they did against JMU, they are going to be fine and it's a 40 minute war. If we see some of the Duke that showed up in the dry spell against Vermont or last year's Tennessee? Houston should win easily. 

4. A Tyler Kolek masterclass vs America's Favorite Big Fella

You know what flew under the radar last weekend because it was the first game of the day on Sunday? Tyler Kolek being a damn near perfect point guard. You want him to close out the game? No problem. That's exactly what he did and he does it in a tempo that you're not used to seeing. He knows when to attack or do that little semi-circle run to get his lefty runner. It's gorgeous to watch. On the other side is Cinderella, if you want to call NC State that. But they have the two DJ's. Burns inside and Horne outside, who is a guy who can go 20-25 if he has to. Oso vs Burns is going to be on the more fun matchups to watch because of how Oso can step out and initiate offense from the high post. 

Picks

All odds via DraftKings

15-10-1 so far in the NCAA Tournament, +4 units

Gonzaga +5.5

Houston -4

Tennessee/Creighton o 145.5

Houston/Marquette ML -101