Amelia Rayno's NCAA picks

  • Updated: March 19, 2013 - 9:10 PM
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Illustration: Virginia Singarayar Star Tribune

Midwest regional

Dream matchup: Everything. Can I say everything? OK fine, I pick Louisville vs. St. Louis. I wanted so badly to pick the tough-and-disciplined Billikens. But the Cardinals are just too good, too strong defensively, too capable of dismantling the unfortunate Billikens. The Ville will top the Saint, but it should be a good one to the end.

 

Upset special: Middle Tennessee over Memphis. Hey, you guys made it! Glad you were able to join the party. How does a little Tiger sound? OK then. I have no doubt Middle Tennessee, which barely slid into the Big Dance, is pumped to be here and show the world why Ken Pomeroy has them ranked 32nd in the country. Memphis, which just might be a little overrated, won’t be able to hold on against an in-state opponent.

 

And the winner is ... It won’t be the easiest road — in fact, the Midwest Region is easily the toughest of this year’s bracket. That’s where the tests of Big Ten will come in handy for Michigan State to survive and get to the Final Four.

South regional

Dream matchup: Virginia Commonwealth vs. North Carolina. There’s no way this one isn’t exciting. How can the Tar Heels’ new small lineup run and compete with Havoc? Probably pretty well. But I still say Shaka Smart’s hands-everywhere, high-energy, watch-where-you-put-that-and-don’t-think-I-won’t-take-it-from-you defense comes through in the end and takes the Rams all the way to the Final Four.

 

Upset special: VCU over Georgetown. What’s this? The Rams plowing past both North Carolina and Georgetown? That’s right, and taking prisoners (plenty of steals) from the turnover-susceptible Hoyas along the way. Otto Porter will do his best, and that will be thrilling, but in the end, it’s not the best team that always prevails — just the one that gives the other one the most fits. Enter VCU.

 

And the winner is ... Do I need to say it again? VCU. Let the party begin.

West regional

Dream matchup: Gonzaga vs. Ohio State. How will Kelly Olynyk and Co. like going against the brutal Big Ten, especially after being told over and over how few games they would have won had they been in that league? I can’t wait to find out. The Zags, who lost at home to Illinois in December, will have to go through two Big Ten teams in Wisconsin and then Ohio State to eventually get to the title game. Bulldogs: Let’s see what you’re made of.

 

Upset special: Belmont over Arizona. This region is about as straightforward as you get in a year where my bracket isn’t exactly dusted with chalk. First round matchups will be the most exciting here, with Iowa State overcoming Notre Dame and the Bruins trumping Arizona, which has done some impressive things this season but remains totally beatable, in my opinion.

 

And the winner is ... Let’s find out if the Bulldogs’ bite is as lethal as their bark. We’ve watched them plow through the West Coast, now it’s time to meet the big boys in the Big Dance.

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Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Washington 102 FINAL
New York 91
Oklahoma City 22 1st Qtr 5:15
San Antonio 16
Cleveland 4:00 PM
Miami
LA Lakers 7:00 PM
Chicago
Golden State 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
DePaul 42 2nd Half 14:19
Loyola Marymount 39
Ohio 3:00 PM
Nebraska
Colorado 5:30 PM
Hawaii
George Washington 7:30 PM
Wichita State
Central Mich 48 FINAL
Western Ky 49
Fresno State 6 FINAL
Rice 30
Illinois 12/26/14 12:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Rutgers 12/26/14 3:30 PM
North Carolina
NC State 12/26/14 7:00 PM
UCF
Cincinnati 12/27/14 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Duke 12/27/14 1:10 PM
(15) Arizona State
Miami-Florida 12/27/14 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 12/27/14 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 12/27/14 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
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Gophers Football Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
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Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 amX28-24
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa 11 amX51-14
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State 11 amX31-24
Nov 22 - at Nebraska 11 amX28-24
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin 2:30 pmX34-24
Jan 1 - vs. Missouri noon

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