Top Dog — Kansas (1)
Coach Bill Self earned his 300th career win with a 70–58 victory over North Carolina — and former Kansas coach Roy Williams. The Jayhawks struggled to pull off a 64–57 win over No. 16 seed Western Kentucky in the Round of 64. KU’s leading scorer this season, redshirt freshman shooting guard Ben McLemore has disappeared during the Tournament, with just 13 total points on 2-of-14 shooting from the field and 0-of-8 from 3-point range over two games. Senior big man Jeff Withey has picked up the slack, however, averaging 16.5 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks per game over the Tournament’s first weekend.
Underdog – Florida Gulf Coast (15)
Andy Enfield was a cult hero heading into the Tournament because he is a self-made millionaire with a supermodel wife. Now the Eagles coach is leading the greatest Cinderella story in Big Dance history. FGCU upset No. 2 seed Georgetown, 78–68, before taking down San Diego State, 81–71, to become the first No. 15 seed to advance to the Sweet 16.
Player to Watch – Trey Burke, Michigan (4)
The National Player of the Year candidate got off to a rocky start, scoring just six points on 2-of-12 shooting in a 71–56 win over South Dakota State. But Burke bounced back with 18 points, seven assists and two steals in a 78–53 statement win over VCU to advance to Michigan’s first Sweet 16 since 1994. Burke will need to bring his A-game in order for U-M to earn a trip to the Final Four for the first time since the Fab Five in 1993.
“The one thing that coach talked to me before I transferred here (from Rutgers), he said ‘You’re putting yourself in big moments and big games.’ … I really took full advantage of it tonight and I told myself, ‘If I’m open, I’m going to knock down the shot.’” — Florida guard Mike Rosario, who scored 25 points on 8-of-12 shooting in a 78–64 win over Minnesota.
Sweet 16 Previews: