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South Region Picks: March Madness Bracket Predictions

March Madness is officially here, so let's fill out some winning brackets! RotoBaller will be bringing you a full breakdown on each tournament region, including some potential sleepers and busts. Today we'll be taking a look at the South Region and my bracket picks.

I'm here to tell you some teams that I believe in to help you make the right tournament bracket decisions. Below I analyze the top four seeds, a potential bust, and a potential final four candidate. Hopefully my college basketball predictions can help you win your March Madness brackets. Now let's get to it.

Editor's Note: Be sure to check out the rest of our NCAA Tournament articles and analysis, including a guide on how to fill out your brackets. Read our March Madness picks, sleepers, busts and predictions for the East, Midwest, and West regions.


South Region Top Four Seeds 

Top four seeds: No. 1 Virginia, No. 2 Tennessee, No. 3 Purdue, No. 4 Kansas State

People are going to short Virginia after last year's debacle against UMBC, but let them! That Virginia team was without their best scorer, De'Andre Hunter. He's back and ready to go. This Virginia team has been waiting all year to make up for last year and they've shown it all season. They've only lost to Duke (twice) and Florida State in the ACC Tournament semifinals. This team is known to beat you with their defense, but they also can win with shooting as they rank fourth in three-point percentage.

Tennessee has tailed off a bit of late, but they are very good. Admiral Schofield and Grant Williams make up one of the most formidable frontcourts in the country. Jordan Bone is the point guard that can make threes when needed. The one thing that makes me nervous with this team is their head coach, Rick Barnes. He's a great head coach, but when it comes to the NCAA Tournament, things get dicey. His record is 22-23 and he's only made it to the Sweet Sixteen or beyond six times in 23 tries.

Purdue was upset in the Big Ten Quarterfinals, a common theme for them come March because they always underwhelm. I really don't know much about them but that's okay because I don't see them getting past Villanova in the Second Round.

Kansas State did win the Big 12 regular-season title, but it really scares me that they are only a 5.5-point favorite over No. 13 UC-Irvine in the First Round. However, this team still has their core that reached the Elite Eight last season.


Most Intriguing First Round Matchup

N0. 5 Wisconsin vs. No. 12 Oregon

I am all-in on Oregon. They are the hottest team in the country and rattling off four must-win games in the Pac-12 Tournament to clinch an automatic-bid. I watched the championship game against Washington and their length and size was NBA-esque. Payton Pritchard runs the point and he was making plays on both the offensive and defensive sides.

Oregon does struggle on offense (108th in adjusted offense per Ken Pom) but the strategy of Wisconsin — walk the ball up to take the shot clock down — plays right into Oregon's hands. The Ducks are a one-point favorite and I not only love them in this game, but then to reach the Sweet 16.


Bust of the Region

Purdue. They don't have a wow factor and I don't see them getting past Villanova in the Second Round. Villanova has a great coach, know what to do late in games and most importantly, they know how to win. Their bigs can shoot threes and that will stretch Purdue out leaving them vulnerable to scoring in the paint.


Final Four Pick

Virginia. The Cavaliers are the best all-around team in basketball. They play elite defense, shoot the three well, and rebound well. People will deem them as chokers after losing as a No. 1 seed last year, but they have an easy path to the Elite Eight. They face Gardner-Webb in the First Round, Ole Miss/Oklahoma in the Second Round, and then Wisconsin/Oregon/K-State/UC-Irvine in the Sweet 16. They'd avoid Tennesee, Villanova, or Purdue until the Elite Eight.

They've been waiting for this moment all year long. They remind us of when Villanova won the title in 2016. Everyone kept calling Villanova chokers and couldn't win the big game, until they did it. Virginia is winning the title this year.

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