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Who ya got?

If you filled out a bracket strictly according to pythagorean winning percentage (a.k.a. the Pomeroy Ratings), you'd have the following sweet sixteen:

(1)Florida, (4)UMd, (6)Notre Dame, (2)Wisconsin
(1)Kansas, (12)Illinois, (6)Duke, (2)UCLA
(1)UNC, (4)Texas, (3)Wazzu, (2)G-town
(1)OSU, (5)Tennessee, (3)Texas A&M, (2)Memphis

And that's the S16 I'm going with in my bracket, save one difference: I'm taking Indiana over UCLA.

There are always teams I end up liking for one reason or another that end up burning me. I picked Kansas to win the title last season because they played great defense, and they promptly lost to Bradley in the first round. I'm taking the Jayhawks again this season...I don't think I have to worry about that opening game this time around. I'm also giving Notre Dame and Duke the opportunity to ruin my bracket this year.

Re: 5/12 upsets. Arkansas and Illinois are the most likely, and they wouldn't really be upsets. Illinois is a hair better than VPI according to the Pomeroy Ratings, and the Razorbacks are better than USC. Don't bother with LBSU over Tennessee; that's a lopsided affair. I don't think Butler will lose to ODU, either.

UNC has an extremely tough second round game against Michigan State on the horizon. The Spartans have a critical flaw--turnovers--but are excellent in the other facets. Should Michigan State manage to limit TOs against the Heels, the game will be close. I'm disappointed MSU is running into a #1 seed in the second round; I had planned on picking them to make a deep run, but I can't see them getting by the Tar Heels. Plus, I'm looking forward to UNC/Texas too much to go with Sparty.

The easiest road to the S16? Washington State's. Every pod has at least two teams in the top 50of the Pomeroy Ratings...except Wazzu's pod. The Cougars' potential second round opponents, Vandy and George Washington, are both over-seeded; those two are the weakest of the teams with their respective seeds in the NCAAs.

Dave Leitao should be sending a thank you card to the selection committee. Not only are the Cavaliers ridiculously over-seeded, their opponent (Albany) is by far the weakest of the 13-seeds. Merry freakin' Christmas. As much as I'll hate to be deprived of an epic Jason Cain/Greg Oden showdown, I'm taking Tennessee over UVA in the second round (out of spite, mainly).

I've got Notre Dame making a surprise run to Atlanta. Which makes Winthrop a lock to beat the Irish.

Final Four: Notre Dame, Kansas, UNC, Texas A&M. KU beats Roy Williams in the final.