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2017 Sweet 16 Predictions and Picks

Are you looking for some 2017 Sweet 16 Predictions and Picks? This year’s March Madness has not disappointed and as the competition moves along teams continue to battle it out towards the Final Four and then to the NCAA Basketball Championship. Keep reading for some Sweet 16 predictions.

  • What: Kentucky Wildcats vs UCLA Bruins
  • When:  March 24, 2017, 9:39 PM ET
  • Where: FedExForum
  • Spread: EV
  • Over/Under: 165.5

Analysis: By his father’s account, Lonzo Ball should be compared with the one and only Michael Jordan. Whatever the case may be, the freshman has been giving UCLA and college basketball fans alike one great show of talent. Ball’s performance against Cincinnati in the second round was truly something to see and ended up going 7-of-10 from the floor, including three three-pointers, for 18 points to go along with seven rebounds, nine assist and just one turnover. Senior Bryce Alford also gave a good showing that although didn’t contribute as much as Ball’s did take off some pressure off him. The Kentucky Wildcats will give a great fight and there’s no denying they’re great on defense. They will, however, need to ramp up their offense, Malik Monk’s performance has not been up to par and De’Aaron Fox’s hasn’t been any better.

Game Prediction: UCLA wins.

  • What: Baylor Bears vs South Carolina Gamecocks
  • When: March 24, 2017, 7:29 PM ET
  • Where:  Madison Square Garden
  • Spread: Baylor -3.5
  • Over/Under: 135

Analysis: The Bear’s Johnathan Motley is having a breakout year and he’s probably the reason why the Bears are in the Sweet 16. Baylor’s win over USC in the second round saw him, King McClure and Terry Matson, combine for 36 points, 10 rebounds, and four steals. They’ll be called upon once more against the Gamecocks to do their thing. South Carolina’s defense is tough and they’re playing very well though this being their first trip to the Sweet 16. The Gamecocks shocked Duke in the second round, knocking them out of the competition and surprised with their hard-nosed play style. Sindarius Thornwell is the Gamecock’s workhorse and he’s given them plenty to talk about in posting an average of 24.9 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.8 threes, and 1.9 steals in his last 11 games. South Carolina is also the third-ranked defense in the country so they could end up upsetting Baylor.

Game Prediction: South Carolina wins.

  • What: North Carolina Tar Heels vs Butler Bulldogs
  • When:  March 24, 2017, 7:09 PM ET
  • Where: FedExForum
  • Spread: North Carolina -7
  • Over/Under: 153

Analysis: It wasn’t all fun and games for North Carolina against Arkansas in the second round. In fact, they had to work for the win big time. If not for Kennedy Meeks, the Tar Heels might have even been booted out of the competition. However, Meeks wound up scoring 16 points and a game-winning tip-in with exactly 44.2 seconds remaining on the clock to give the Tar Heels their ticket to this round. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs are a straight shooting team and they’ll likely rely on long to mid-distance shots to open the court up. Kelan Martin proved instrumental in Butler’s win over Middle Tennessee, ending up with 19 points, six rebounds and four assists, while also going 3-for-6 from beyond the arc.

Game Prediction: North Carolina wins

  • What: Oregon Ducks vs Michigan Wolverines 
  • When: March 23, 2017, 7:09 PM ET
  • Where:  Sprint Center
  • Spread: Oregon -1
  • Over/Under: 146.5

Analysis: Tyler Dorsey and Dillon Brooks have been stellar for the Ducks in this competition. Against Rhode Island, Dorsey scored 27 points on 9-for-10 shooting, including four threes, while Brooks put up 19 points and seven rebounds and they’ll likely be tasked with giving a similar effort against the Wolverines. On defense, Jordan Bell has been fantastic for the Ducks; Bell has 10 or more boards in five of his last six outings, and in that span, he’s averaging 10.7 points, 10.8 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks. As for Michigan, Moe Wagner and Derrick Walton give the Wolverines consistency on both sides of the court and should go toe-to-toe with the Ducks.

Game Prediction: Oregon wins.