Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Big XII Tournament


#8 Texas Tech vs. #9 Oklahoma State
Winner plays #1 Texas

#5 Baylor vs. #12 Colorado
Winner plays #4 Oklahoma

#7 Nebraska vs. #10 Missouri
Winner plays #2 Kansas

#6 Texas A&M vs. #11 Iowa State
Winner plays #3 Kansas State

Favorite - Kansas. I know Texas got the one seed (via the 72-69 win the Horns had) but as Kansas is ranked higher, has a better record, and by all accounts is the better team and likely in position to get a one seed. Kansas has one of the most balanced attacks in the country. From big front line (Sasha Kaun, Darrell Arthur, and Darnell Jackson) to their stellar guard play (Brandon Rush, Mario Chalmers, Russell Robinson, and Sherron Collins), Kansas has all the parts you are looking for.

Sleeper - Watch out for Baylor at the five seed. Their final record ended up mediocre, but when you factor in a streak where they lost six of seven in the middle of the conference season, their record doesn't look so bad. They won four of their last five (including one over Kansas State) and beat Winthrop and Notre Dame in rout to winning the Paradise Jam. They have a quintet of good guards, led my Curtis Jerrells and LaceDarius Dunn, and Kevin Rogers can more than hold is own inside.

Most Intriguing Match-up - It's too bad Baylor and Texas A&M can't meet up until the finals (the last two times these teams played, there was a five OT game and a hard pick that knocked down Baylor guard Tweety Carter and almost ended up with the benches clearing). If all seeds hold to form, we will get to see Kansas-Kansas State round 3 in the semis.

My Pick - Texas. I love DJ Augustin. If it wasn't for some freshman in Manhattan, KS he would be the runaway candidate for conference player of the year. Damion James, AJ Abrams, and Conor Atchley are all perfect for their roles on this team. I think the 'Horns upset Kansas in the finals.

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