Well we’re on to the Elite Eight now and what an eight it is.
#2 Duke vs. #4 Arkansas
#5 Houston vs. #2 Villanova
#1 Kansas vs. #10 Miami
#15 Saint Peter’s vs. #8 UNC
The Last Ride for Mike Krzyzewski has dominated media coverage but the Saint Peter’s story may have caught and surpassed it. The tiny school from Jersey City has bulled its way into the Elite Eight after knocking off #2 Kentucky, #7 Murray State and #3 Purdue. We heard earlier that that’s better than Gonzaga has done with high seeds in the last 20 years.
Who would have ever dreamed that this could happen? And can it continue?
Well, yes. Based on what we’ve seen so far it can. We thought that Purdue’s front line would kill Saint Pete’s. Didn't happen. Somehow 7-4 Zach Edey got just two rebounds. He and star Jaden Ivey combined for 11 turnovers and Ivey shot just 4-12.
Saint Peter’s has a few things that are hard to beat: great guard play, great defense and a group that is totally relaxed and together. That’s a tough thing to stop. We’ll go with the Peacocks again.
Miami isn’t all that far off of that recipe. That team has developed a real swagger and after a close opener with USC has just rolled, killing #2 Auburn 79-61 and #11 Iowa State 70-56. We’ll take them.
We also like Villanova. Houston is amazingly tough but we just like ‘Nova’s DNA.
Obviously we’re taking Duke. We don’t bet against Duke.
And if Duke does win, that Final Four game is going to huge because either Duke will face UNC for the first time in the NCAA Tournament or Saint Peter’s. And the media frenzy is going to be completely insane either way.
Small factor to consider: Saint Peter’s now has to deal with a level of distraction it’s never come close to. We hope they can maintain everything that has gotten them to this point.