Rashad Phillips' March Madness Sweet 16 Day One Picks and Predictions: Orange set to squeeze the Cougars
What an NCAA Tournament we’ve seen so far, and personally, what a great March Madness I’m having.
So far in this tournament, I’ve successfully predicted the Abilene Christian and Ohio upsets over Texas and Virginia in the first round, and then continued that hot streak into the second round by once again picking Oral Roberts to get the job done against Florida. I’ve got at least one underdog I like the look of today as well to pull off an upset and keep their Cinderella story going.
It’s close at the top of the leaderboard in the Pickswise $10,000 Capper Contest and I’m hoping for some more winning picks today to ensure I stay in the mix for that one. Make sure you head over to check out who all the other college basketball experts are picking for Saturday’s Sweet 16 action.
Let’s dive into my picks for Saturday’s four Sweet 16 matchups, but make sure you check out the Pickswise team’s picks on the side and total for every game throughout the tournament.
Oregon State Beavers vs. Loyola Chicago Ramblers
Loyola Chicago beating Illinois was all the confidence they needed to go into this matchup against the Beavers. I do give the Beavers a shot at winning this, though, because I believe this game will come down to the last shot. Overall I think Loyola advances, but I’m taking Oregon State to cover the spread. They should keep this one within six.
PICK: Oregon State +6.5
Be sure to check out the full game preview for Oregon State Beavers vs. Loyola Chicago Ramblers.
Villanova Wildcats vs. Baylor Bears
PICK: Baylor -6.5
Be sure to check out the full game preview for Villanova Wildcats vs. Baylor Bears.
CBS analyst and college basketball expert Jon Rothstein went 3-0 with his best picks for last Monday’s second-round action! Read his predictions for Saturday’s Sweet 16 games here.
Oral Roberts Golden Eagles vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
Arkansas and Oral Roberts have already been acquainted once this season, when they faced off back in December. Arkansas won that game 87-76. Max Abmas was in foul trouble and that kind of kept him out of that game, as he registered just 11 points and converted four of his 11 field-goal attempts. Kevin Obanor was tremendous in that game for Oral Roberts as he registered 21 points and 10 rebounds. I’m looking for Abmas to get going early and make this game an exciting one. I’m still going to go with Arkansas to cover the spread but I’m not confident in picking them. This should be a great matchup!
PICK: Arkansas -11
Be sure to check out the full game preview for Oral Roberts Golden Eagles vs. Arkansas Razorbacks.
Syracuse Orange vs. Houston Cougars
Syracuse is the Rubix cube in this tournament: hard to solve, difficult to plan for, and frustrating to eliminate. Houston comes in as one of my favorite teams with Quentin Grimes and company playing great basketball. Unfortunately, this is a bad match-up for Houston. I love you Houston but your time is up. Syracuse rolls.
LOCK: Syracuse +6
Be sure to check out the full game preview for Syracuse Orange vs. Houston Cougars.
Check out more of Rashad Phillips’ March Madness views below, where he breaks down why we’re seeing so many upsets this year.