It’s time to fill out your bracket for the 2016 NCAA Tournament. For those of you looking for some help on who to take in each game, or just for some possible upsets, here is a look at who I have coming out of each region. I have also listed my Final Four predictions as well to help you win your bracket contests and pools. Be sure to check out my completed bracket for my picks in every game.
The South Region is the second-easiest in my opinion. It holds two teams that could both team No. 1 seeds in Kansas and Villanova, but the rest of the bracket won’t scare either of those two teams. Also residing in this region are Maryland, California and Miami.
I’m not seeing too many upsets likely in this region. My biggest upset pick is the Vanderbilt/Wichita State winner taking down No. 6 Arizona.
I have Kansas meeting Villanova in the Elite 8 with the Jayhawks earning the trip to Houston for the Final Four.
Final Four Participant: Kansas
Without question, the East is the most difficult region. Teams I really wanted to pick to go deep like No. 1 North Carolina, No. 2 Xavier, No. 3 West Virginia and No. 4 Kentucky all reside in this region. Not to mention Big Ten regular season champ Indiana, which is a No. 5 seed.
I certainly am not expecting many upsets in this region at all. My biggest upset pick is No. 10 Pittsburgh over No. 7 Wisconsin in the opening round.
I am taking the chalk to make it to the Elite 8 in the East. I have No. 1 North Carolina topping No. 2 Xavier to punch its ticket to the Final Four.
Final Four Participant: North Carolina
I am pegging the West Region as the second-most difficult. That’s because it has three teams that I really like in No. 1 Oregon, No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 3 Texas A&M.
The rest of the region is pretty watered-down. I don’t trust No. 4 Duke, No. 5 Baylor or No. 6 Texas to make a run. My biggest upset pick is No. 11 Northern Iowa over No. 6 Texas.
Because Oregon has such an easy path to the Elite 8, I have it making the Final Four from the West. I have Oklahoma facing Texas A&M in the Sweet 16 and could see that game going either way, but I’ll give the edge to the Aggies.
Final Four Participant: Oregon
The Midwest Region appears to be the easiest to me. Yes, No. 1 Virginia and No. 2 Michigan State are both strong teams, but Virginia always seems to disappoint in the NCAA Tournament.
A sleeper team that could come out of this region is No. 4 Iowa State, but that’s the only team I foresee challenging the top two teams. I believe No. 3 Utah is way overrated. I do have No. 5 Purdue losing to No. 12 Arkansas-Little Rock as my biggest upset here.
I’ve picked Michigan State and Virginia to reach the Elite 8 from this region. In the end, I expect Tom Izzo’s team to be cutting down the nets with a trip to Houston on the horizon.
Final Four Participant: Michigan State
Final Four Predictions
No. 1 Kansas will meet No. 1 Oregon in the South/West Final Four matchup. The Jayhawks will prevail and meeting the winning of No. 1 North Carolina/No. 2 Michigan State. I think the Tar Heels are the best team in the country with the fewest weaknesses of anyone in the field. They have great guard play, tremendous size in the paint, and this is the best defensive team that Roy Williams has had in a while, which gets overlooked. The Tar Heels will be your 2016 national champions.
2016 National Champion: North Carolina