2012 NCAA March Madness Tournament: Weekend Recap

Danny "DSPN" Dabiri's Weekend Recap of 2012 NCAA Tournament

Friday, March 16th 2012

Friday’s tournament action was highlighted by the shocking upsets of number two seeds Duke and Missouri at the hands of Lehigh and Norfolk State respectively. The last 15 seed to earn a victory was Hampton over Iowa State in 2001.

Lehigh was led by C.J. McCollom with 30 points, six rebounds and six assists. Norfolk St. was powered by the inside play of big man Kyle O’Quinn, who dominated the paint with 26 points and 14 rebounds. Remarkably, Norfolk St. was the only program to offer O’Quinn a scholarship which underscores the importance of college level athletes having a platform to promote their talents.

The upset bug also bit four seed Michigan, who lost to Ohio 65-60 behind a strong performance by junior guard D.J. Cooper. The disappointing end to Michigan’s season is tapered by the impending arrival of a distinguished recruiting class including top recruit Mitch McGary, Glenn Robinson III and Nic Stauskas.

Other double digit seeds advancing were 12th seed South Florida, 11th seed NC State and 10th seed Xavier.

Top Dunks of 2012 NCAA Tournament... So Far!

Saturday, March 17th 2012

The games on Saturday held to form with the lower seed winning every game on the slate. Top seeds Syracuse and Kentucky booked trips to the Sweet Sixteen with fairly comfortable victories over Kansas State and Iowa State respectively.

Ohio State withstood a tough challenge from Gonzaga to advance in the East Region. The Big Ten booked two more Sweet Sixteen spots with Indiana and Wisconsin advancing as well.

The Colorado Buffaloes hot streak finally came to an end at the hands of the Baylor Bears. Sharpshooter Brady Heslip drilled nine three pointers for all of his 27 points. Despite the loss, Colorado should return many key players. Combine that with the looming arrival of Mater Dei star Xavier Johnson, and the Buffs postseason prospects next season look very good indeed.

Sunday, March 18th 2012

The state of Ohio was the big winner on Sunday as Ohio, Xavier and Cincinnati joined Ohio State in the Sweet Sixteen. Cincinnati will play Ohio State on Thursday at the East Regional in Boston.

Top seeds Michigan State and North Carolina both advanced. UNC point guard Kendall Marshall suffered a right wrist fracture that will require surgery, leaving his status uncertain moving forward. The Tar Heels will play Ohio on Friday while the Spartans will take on Louisville on Thursday.

11 seed NC State defeated third seed Georgetown to advance to their first Sweet Sixteen since 2005. A small consolation for Georgetown is that top recruit Nerlens Noel has narrowed his decision to three schools, including the Hoyas. Noel is also considering Syracuse and Kentucky.

Kansas rallied to defeat Purdue 63-60 and will play NC State on Friday in the Midwest Regional. Capping off the action was a hard fought contest between Florida State and Cincinnati. The Bearcats clawed out a 62-56 victory, advancing to their first Sweet Sixteen since 2001.

There are 16 teams remaining with a shot at the title. The Big East and Big Ten each have four teams alive. Xavier and Ohio are the only programs from non-power conferences advancing to next week.

Here is a conference breakdown:

(4) Big East: Syracuse, Marquette, Louisville, Cincinnati

(4) Big Ten: Michigan State, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Indiana

(2) SEC: Kentucky, Florida

(2) ACC: North Carolina, NC State

(2) Big 12: Kansas, Baylor

(1) A10: Xavier

(1) MAC: Ohio

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Danny "DSPN" Dabiri (Editor)