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Final Picks For The 2021 NCAA Tournament Bracket

Here goes nothing

Appalachian State v Norfolk St
 BLOOMINGTON, INDIANA - MARCH 18: Adrian Delph #20 of the Appalachian State Mountaineers reacts following the defeat against the Norfolk State Spartans in a First Four game during the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Assembly Hall on March 18, 2021 in Bloomington, Indiana.
Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

So as usual, we end up tweaking our brackets until the last minute. We did pretty well in the First Four, picking Norfolk State, Texas Southern, Drake and Michigan State.

Norfolk State and Drake cut it close but both won. We have been calling this the asterisk year but there was no asterisk next to Justin Forrest at the end of the Norfolk State-Appalachian State game.

The son of Georgia Tech great James Forrest, Justin fell to the floor after missing a potential game winner for the Mountaineers after a tremendous 19 point comeback.

Here was his dad’s famous shot. You know, you just know, that Justin dreamed all his life of matching it and he had a chance and a chance to do it in front of his father’s college coach, Bobby Cremins who used to coach at App State, but he just couldn’t do it.

It’s got to be heartbreaking for all three of them. They may take some consolation in this: the ACC is always the dominant presence in basketball in this state but it’s hard to imagine any team making all of us prouder.

We have to say, we were really disappointed with Michigan State. That was the worst we can ever recall a Tom Izzo team playing in the post-season. Wer’es are someone else could think of a worse outing but that team just blew multiple chances.

Not to take anything away from UCLA. We were really unsure about Mick Cronin but he’s injected a ton of character into that team.

With that said, here are our final picks, round by round. We never thought we’d do this but we have three Texas teams in the Final Four and one of them to win it all.

Now watch it blow up.

West, first round:

  1. Gonzaga over Norfolk State
  2. Missouri over Oklahoma
  3. UCSB over Creighton
  4. Ohio over Virginia
  5. Drake over USC
  6. Kansas over E. Washington
  7. Oregon over VCU
  8. Iowa over Grand Canyon

South, first round:

  1. Baylor over Hartford
  2. UNC over Wisconsin
  3. Winthrop over Villanova
  4. Purdue over N. Texas
  5. Texas Tech over Utah State
  6. Arkansas over Colgate
  7. Virginia Tech over Florida
  8. Ohio State over Oral Roberts

East, first round

  1. Michigan over Texas Southern
  2. LSU over St. Bonaventure
  3. Colorado over Georgetown
  4. Florida State over UNCG
  5. BYU over Michigan State UCLA
  6. Texas over Abilene Christian
  7. UConn over Maryland
  8. Alabama over Iona

Midwest, first round

  1. Illinois over Drexel
  2. Loyola over Georgia Tech
  3. Tennessee over Oregon State
  4. Oklahoma State over Liberty
  5. San Diego State over Syracuse
  6. West Virginia over Morehead State
  7. Clemson over Rutgers
  8. Houston over Cleveland State

West, second round

  1. Gonzaga over Missouri
  2. UCSB over Ohio
  3. USC over Kansas
  4. Iowa over Oregon

South, second round

  1. UNC over Baylor
  2. Purdue over Winthrop
  3. Texas Tech over Arkansas
  4. Virginia Tech over Ohio State

East, second round

  1. Michigan over LSU
  2. Florida State over Colorado
  3. Texas over Michigan State BYU
  4. UConn over Alabama

Midwest, second round

  1. Illinois over Loyola
  2. Tennessee over Oklahoma State
  3. West Virginia over Syracuse
  4. Houston over Clemson

Sweet Sixteen Round, West

  1. Gonzaga over UCSB
  2. Iowa over USC

Finals: Gonzaga over Iowa

Sweet Sixteen Round, South

  1. UNC over Purdue
  2. Texas Tech over Virginia Tech

Finals: Texas Tech over UNC

Sweet Sixteen Round, East

  1. Michigan over Florida State
  2. Texas over UConn

Finals: Texas over Michigan

Sweet Sixteen Round, Midwest

  1. Illinois over Oklahoma State
  2. Houston over West Virginia

Finals: Illinois over Houston

Final Four

  • Gonzaga over Texas
  • Texas Tech over Houston

National championship

Texas Tech over Gonzaga