Rayno: Don't be upset if these NCAA upsets occur

  • Updated: March 19, 2014 - 11:17 PM

Harvard guard (and former Hopkins star) Siyani Chambers

They happen every year: 12s over 5s, 10s over 7s. Last year, even a 15 over a 2. Oh, the drama is magnificent.

The question is not whether upsets will happen, but which Cinderellas will be the Cinderellas. They’re hard to pinpoint. How many times has a trendy upset pick disappointed? How many brackets have been reduced to fire-starters after an I’m-Sorry-Who?!? squad comes out of nowhere? Lots, OK?

That fateful No. 15 seed of last year, Florida Gulf Coast, went on to the Sweet Sixteen, the first 15 to do so. I only know one person that had that, and he picks his bracket by rolling dice (not a bad strategy, now that we mention it). But while not every upset can be predicted by mortal man or even Ken Pomeroy, the prime candidates can identified based on matchup, momentum and all the elusive intangibles. If all these flips happened, it would be a crazy first round.

It would also be two great days of basketball.

Here’s who I think has a shot, rated by confidence like so:

Dagger Swagger: Oh yeah, it’s good. Count it.

Solid Shot: A 50-50 midrange jumper.

Please Don’t Airball: Heaving it from half-court here, people.


Thursday’s games

(11) Dayton over (6) Ohio State 11:15 a.m., Ch. 4

Line: Ohio State by 6

Why it will happen: The Buckeyes have been hard to predict this year. First a 15-game winning streak. Then five losses in six games. Then six wins in seven games. Then a pair of mind-boggling drops at season’s end. Then a run to the Big Ten tournament semifinals, nearly upsetting top-seeded Michigan. What a weird team. But if Ohio State plays like the most recent version, handling Dayton’s respectable scoring attack shouldn’t be a problem.

Confidence meter: Please Don’t Airball

(12) Harvard over (5) Cincinnati 1:10 p.m., TNT

Line: Cincinnati by 3

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