The NCAA season has reached it first round of the postseason. With the regular season now in the books, we are in the heart of the conference tournaments. Come Wednesday, March 8th, a good majority of the conferences will have started their respective tournaments. Several tickets have already have been punched, with more to come each and every day in the coming week.
One of the tournaments that will be tipping off for the first time on Wednesday will be the Big 12 Conference Tournament. Here at INSC we have you covered, with predictions down below. This tourney will conclude on Saturday, March 11th.
You can check out the seedings and a link to the bracket below.
(2) West Virginia
(4) Iowa State
(5) Oklahoma State
(6) Kansas State
(7) Texas Tech
The Big 12 will have several teams into the tournament, whether they win this tournament or not. One of those teams who is not sure if they are safe however is TCU, who will open up against Oklahoma for a chance to take on Kansas. Luckily for them, Oklahoma simply is not that good. So I have them moving on, 75-69, with the chance to take down the giants in Kansas. Now I think Kansas will get upset in the NCAA Tournament at some point thanks to free throw shooting and I do think TCU will put up a fight here as they fight for their lives. But when it hits that final buzzer, talent will win out, and the Jayhawks pull it out 75-72.
Next up we have an interesting game between Iowa State and Oklahoma State. Iowa State has their tickets punched, whether they win this or not. Oklahoma State on the other hand, will need to win this whole thing if they want to dance. And it just so happens that will be enough to help propel them to an upset victory in this game, as they take down the Cyclones by the score of 82-74.
Next up we have two teams that I simply am not very high on. I thought Baylor was overrated earlier in the season, and they have since come back down to earth a bit. Kansas State is a team that finds themselves firmly on the bubble. Kansas State has shown their flaws lately, going from a team that was expected to be in, to one that is likely one of the last ones in. But they will fall here, 71-68, ending their dreams of a NCAA Tournament bid.
To wrap up the bottom part of the bracket, Texas and Texas Tech will go at it for the chance to play West Virginia. I will keep the first part of this nice and simple. Statistically, Texas Tech is a tourney team, but their inability to close out big games will likely keep them out. But that talent will be enough to hold off the Longhorns, 77-65. But unfortunately for Tech, West Virginia is just really damn good. The Mountaineers will take care of business, 79-70.
So our first semifinal matchup will see Kansas go up against the surprise team Oklahoma State. Now I have not hid the fact that I think Kansas is overrated. Yes I realize they have some serious talent, but they cannot hit free throws, and their overall depth is not that great. A bad game from one or two of their stars and they will hit a game that sees them fall. Because I do not want to just take all of the favorites, I am calling for an upset here. Give me Oklahoma State 81-76.
They will be tasked with facing the winners of the Baylor-West Virginia game. In this one, I am not a fan of Baylor, but I think WV could be poised for a deep tourney run. So where do you think this prediction is going? If you said I was going to take West Virginia, you would be correct. Give me the team coached by Bob Huggins, 77-68.
That sets up a Big 12 title game against Oklahoma State and West Virginia. This could be a game that bursts someone’s bubble if Ok State can pull it off. But that will not happen. West Virginia is this conference’s best team and it will show in this tournament. They will take the automatic bid thanks to a 82-78 victory.
So what do you think? Who will emerge with a NCAA Tournament bid? Will it be an upset, or will the top seed claim their auto bid? Tell us in the comments!