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NCAA Tournament: West Region Preview
By Reel Robinson

It is that time of the year, the time where dreams come true and fairy tales are created. March Madness is among us and this year looks to be one of the most exciting. The parody across college basketball throughout the country (outside of Kentucky) has continuously grown over the past decade and that is evident with the field in 2015. I am looking forward to a lot of upsets and even more buzzer beaters and the rising of many heart rates. I am going to take a closer look at the West Region where some very strong competition sits awaiting the opportunity to chase for the title.

The West Region starts off with two of the perennial favorites to win the tournament. No. 1 seed Wisconsin, who won the Big Ten tournament title in a wild game against Michigan State on Sunday, are now on a mission to get back to the Final Four after last years' run. They have pretty much their entire team back for this run and look to push as far as their big man and Player of the Year candidate Frank Kaminsky can take them. The No. 2 seed in the West is the Pac-12 Champs and Tournament champions Arizona. I witnessed the Wildcats dominate the PAC-12 tournament this year in Vegas and I have become a believer of head coach Shaun Miller and his approach to defense. Unlike last year, the Wildcats have their best player and PAC-12 tournament MVP Branden Ashley on the floor. He could have a big tournament this year, so keep your eyes out for him.

Outside of the two top seeds in the region, the west is stacked with strong competition which looks to make the likes of Wisconsin and Arizona work just to make it to the Elite 8. The No. 3 seed in the west is Baylor, a strong team out of the Big 12. Baylor will take on my sleeper team in the first round in No. 14 Georgia State. Georgia State I witnessed against Iowa State early in the season and they played tough against the No. 9 ranked team, ultimately falling short. Fast forward to March and they have resurfaced after a 24-9 record this season, the same record as Baylor. The transfer heavy team has a chance to upset and surprise a few teams starting off with Baylor.

Best Round of 64 Game
Joseph Young

The West Region has some intriguing matchups, but there is one that stands out. The No. 8 Oregon vs. No. 9 Oklahoma State game looks to be the hardest to pick in this region. Both teams have beaten very good teams throughout the season and can play with the best of them. Oregon took a beat down against Arizona in the PAC-12 tourney championship, so I expect them to bounce-back against Oklahoma State. PAC-12 player of the year, Joseph Young, can put up points with the best of them so Oklahoma State has to play lock down defense on this young guard if they want to slow down the Ducks. Oklahoma State is a stingy defensive team and may cause problems if they can get an early lead. I have the Cowboys in a close one, though the winner of this game will most likely run into the No. 1 seed Wisconsin in the round 32.

Final Four Pick

I think West Region will be the toughest region in the field. The winner will have to take on Kentucky to win the title, so the one who battles their way through this region will be confident and may put the undefeated Wildcats on the ropes. After watching Arizona in person this past weekend, I'm picking them to get out of West region. Who do you like out of the West?

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