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Sweet 16 Breakdown: West Region
By Reel Robinson

The first weekend of March Madness came to a close last night and it has already been one compelling tournament to say the least. Some unique matchups contributed to some even more unique victors. The line between the cinderella story and title contender was erased after the first three rounds of this tournament. All but one of the No. 1 seeds advanced to the coveted Sweet 16. The competition has been incredible all over the bracket, which should make for entertaining games in the coming week. We'll take a closer look at the remaining field and look at their chances of advancing and pushing towards a National Championship.

The round of 32 ended with some blowout games last night with Baylor beating down Doug McDermott and Creighton 85-55. The long and athletic Baylor team jumped on the Blue Jays early and never let up holding McDermott to only 15 points, 11 under his season average. Arizona beat Gonzaga as well 84-61 as the Pac-12 freshman of the year Aaron Gordon had his way all game dropping 18 points to advance the No. 1 seeded Wildcats to the Sweet 16 for the second straight year. Arizona will take on San Diego State in the Sweet 16, a rematch to an earlier season game where Arizona went into San Diego and beat the No. 4 seeded team on their home court.

San Diego State is a different team than before and I expect them to play that revenge role well against the Pac-12 champions. Both teams are strong defensively and it will be a battle to see who'll manufacture the more potent offensive attack. U of A will be without one of their players that participated in that first meeting. Brandon Ashley was hurt for the season midway through the Wildcats dominating run. The Aztecs are led by Senior guard Xavier Thames who scored 30 points in their round three game against North Dakota State. Thames will be guarded by Pac-12 player of the year Nick Johnson one of the best on ball defenders in the country, which I believe will be a matchup to look out for on Thursday.

The West Region didn't seem to be a strong region when the committee announced the teams, but those who have survived have looked like formidable contenders. The other game in the region will pit No. 2 Wisconsin vs. No. 6 Baylor. Wisconsin is a very good team that shoots the ball extremely well. Baylor and their long arms stifled Creighton who plays a similar game as Wisconsin (maybe on a smaller scale). If Wisconsin is passing the ball well and knocking down shots they will be hard to beat. Baylor will play a matching zone and try to force Wisconsin to shoot bad shots. If they succeed, they will be advancing. Both teams have size down low. Wisconsin relies on seven-foot center Frank Kaminsky. Kaminsky scored 19 points in their win over Oregon on Saturday and played a big role in how the ball moved across the floor. He will have to battle with Baylor big man Isaiah Austin and figure out a way to get some points in the paint, a problem Creighton had no answer for.

The Sweet 16 is here! The teams who were prepared for the long journey are still around, and with a week of practice, I wonder who will take the opportunity to make their tournament dreams come true. I picked San Diego State to advance to the Elite 8 and I am sticking with my pick. I had Creighton going far in this region but after seeing Baylor dominate them I wonder how far they can take that momentum. They are playing for an opportunity to play in front of basically a home crowd in Arlington, TX where the National Title game will be taking place. Needless to say I have to go with Baylor to continue their run. Who do you got winning their Sweet 16 matchups in the West Region? Let me know in the comments.

West Sweet 16 Matchups

No. 1 Arizona vs. No. 4 San Diego State 3/27 10:15pm EST

No.2 Wisconsin vs. No. 6 Baylor 3/27 7:47pm EST

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