Louisville Cardinals vs Wichita State ShockersBoth teams come in with a lot of emotional appeal to the media and fans. The Shockers are the ultimate cinderella and made it to the Final four after coming so close last year. The Shockers have been winning their games by an average of 10.5 point per game and beating the number one seed, Gonzaga Bulldogs. The Louisville Cardinals are dominating through the tournament demolishing everybody in their path. The Cardinals are winning games by at least 20 points per game. Speaking of 20 points per game, Russ Smith for the Cardinal is putting up crazy numbers in this year’s NCAA Tournament. In every game, he has had at least 20 points, which is impressive. Louisville had the toughest road to the final four that is for sure, with Oregon and Duke. But the Cardinals have steam-rolled the competition though. The Shockers may not have even played anybody up to the caliber that the Cardinals have. They beat Gonzaga, when a lot of people though they shouldn’t be a number one seed. They beat Ohio State, who is a fair competition, but can sometimes be inconsistent. I think Witchita has no change in this game.
Prediction: The Louiville Cardinals win this game by at least 15 points.
Syracuse Orange vs Michigan Wolverines
Both teams have contrasting styles. Syracuse wants to slow the game down and make it a half-court game so that they can set up their scary 2-3 Zone. Michigan with all that talent and speed in the back-court, they want to get up and down the court in a hurry. Trey Burke is has had a very good two games in the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight. The x-factor for Michigan is going to be how freshman big man, Mitch McGary plays. Syracuse shut down Indiana big man Cody Zeller and made him look like an eighth grader playing in the NBA. The x-factor for Syracuse is Michael Carter-Williams. He is a player that can shoot the three and spread the Mcihgian defense out, so that the Orange can pound it inside and get the big’s for Michigan in foul trouble. Also, with Michigan it is what team will show up. If it is the team that is controlling the tempo fo the game and making three-pointer’s then, the Wolverines are going to be a tough team to beat. Syracuse has great 2-3 zone defense and it’s one of the best defenses in the country. But I feel like Michigan is going to be just fine attacking that 2-3 zone with Trey Burke. And the fact that they have a whole week to prepare for it.
Prediction: Michigan Wolverines win a close 5 point game.
2013 National Championship Game:
Louisville Cardinals vs Michigan Wolverines
Both teams want to “Run, run, run.” And that is what the game will be. It will just be, who is going to control the tempo of the fast pace game. If Michigan can again get quickly away from the press that Louisville puts on, which they have the athletic ability to do, then Michigan will be set for a national championship in this game. Louisville needs to have Russ Smith shut down Trey Burke, but also get his 20 points as well. The X-factor for the Wolverines will be big man Mitch McGary. Will he be able to dominante the post and have a game like he did against Kansas. Louisville is big down low, so if they can shut him down for the most part, they have a change of winning. The X-factor for Louisville is Peyton Silva. He is a pass-first point guard, which seams rare now-a-days, but if he can start dishing the ball around and also getting points as well. He will be a huge part of the Cardinal winning the national championship. In the end, I think this is an exciting game filled with a lot of athletic guards and teams that love to have pressure defense and fast-paced tempo. However, I think Louisville has way to much emotion going for them right now because of their fallen teammate. I think Michigan folds under the pressure of playing for a national championship.
Prediction: The Louiville Cardinals win te National Championship