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NCAA Tournament: N.C. State Upsets Villanova, Kentucky and Arizona Roll
By Reel Robinson

Upsets are changing the entire landscape of the tournament.

The best game of the day was between No. 3 seed Notre Dame and No. 6 Butler. The Fighting Irish, who won the ACC tournament for the first time since joining the conference, look confident and ready to make long push through the tournament. Butler, another hot team, came in as the underdog. They put up a valiant effort, but felt short in the end losing 67-64. Notre Dame guards Jerian Grant and Steve Vasturia had strong games leading the team to the Sweet 16, setting them up for a matchup against the winner between No. 2 seed Kansas or No. 7 seed Wichita State.

My sleeper team, No. 14 Georgia State, went up against No. 6 Xavier after coming up with the biggest upset of the tournament on day one. They fell short in their attempt to copy their performance. Xavier over powered the small school, closing out the game with a 75-67 victory, sending home the potential cinderella story. North Carolina, who barely got through their first round game, went against another hungry team in Arkansas. The SEC team has a history of scoring deficiencies and they couldn't muster up enough offense to defeat UNC. Coach Roy Williams now has another team heading to the Sweet 16, despite their subpar play so far during the tournament. They are a scary team when they play to their potential, but we have yet to see that.

The biggest upset of the day belonged to No. 8 NC State, who took down No. 1 1 seed Villanova 71-68. NC State guard Trevor Lacey led the way with 17 points, spearheading the upset and sending his team to the Sweet 16 to face the winner between Northern Iowa and Louisville. NC State went under the radar this season, but they're one of the more versatile teams in the tournament. It will be interesting to see how far they can go.

The rest of the day went according to plan. The No. 2 seed Arizona took on No. 10 Ohio State. Being that I am Michigan fan, I am obligated to dislike the Buckeyes and wish nothing but bad on their sports teams. I was ecstatic that they took a 73-58 beat down to one of the favorites to win the whole tournament. Arizona seems to have found their rhythm as they await a Sweet 16 opportunity against Xavier.

During the season, the PAC-12 looked as if it were the weaker conference, causing Arizona to go unnoticed. As of yesterday, the PAC-12 has been nothing but a success so far in this tournament. UCLA defeated UAB and Utah took down Georgetown, sending three teams from the conference to the Sweet 16.

Finally, the Kentucky Wildcats -- the best team in the country and favorite to win it all -- defeated Cincinnati pretty handily. The Bearcats gave a great effort early, but the powerhouse that is Kentucky took advantage of the smaller team as the game progressed. Knocking the Wildcats out of this tournament will be tough. They await the winner between No. 5 West Virginia and No. 4 Maryland; both teams could actually give Kentucky some problems.

March Madness has been everything we have wanted this year with upsets and close games all over the place. After the first weekend comes to a close, I am looking forward to watching the rest of the tournament unfold.


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