The faculty basketball season is off to a terrific begin. Should you thought the primary week of the 2020-2021 school basketball season was enjoyable, simply look forward to this week: six top-25 match-ups, three top-10 video games and two top-5 contests.
On this week’s episode of March Insanity 365, Andy Katz and Chad “March Chadness” Aycock preview a number of the greatest video games and Katz makes his predictions for the second week of faculty basketball. Katz additionally talks to Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs, Baylor head coach Scott Drew and Ohio guard Jason Preston.
Andy Katz is 5-2 along with his predictions after week one. Listed here are his predictions for this week of the 2020-2021 school basketball season (all occasions Jap).
No. 1 in opposition to No. 2 this early within the season is at all times enjoyable. In what may very well be a nationwide championship preview, the Zags will meet the Bears after each groups end a tricky match-up earlier within the week — No. 5 Illinois for Baylor and No. 11 West Virginia for Gonzaga. The Bulldogs will lean closely on main scorer Drew Timme (26.5 ppg). Baylor will look to athletic guards Jared Butler, Mark Very important and Davion Mitchell. Katz sees Gonzaga squeaking resulting from late-game heroics from Corey Kispert.
Katz’s choose: Gonzaga
Texas comes dwelling from the Maui Invitational to host Villanova within the Massive East-Massive 12 Battle. Villanova’s Jeremiah Robinson-Earl would be the participant to look at. He leads each squads in factors (20) and rebounds (9). Texas will be capable of throw Jericho Sims and Greg Brown at ‘Nova to try to gradual Robinson-Earl down, however Katz likes the Wildcats. Though they fell to Virginia Tech of their final recreation, the expertise they’ve with Robinson-Earl and the veteran presence at guard with Collin Gillespie needs to be sufficient to push ‘Nova over the Longhorns.
Katz’s choose: Villanova
Xavier faces bitter rival Cincinnati on Sunday. Xavier has began the season 4-Zero with wins over Oakland, Bradley, Toledo and Jap Kentucky. Cincinnati will solely have one recreation beneath its belt earlier than taking over its cross-town rival. The Bearcats play Lipscomb on Wednesday, Dec. 2. Katz likes Xavier as a result of they’ll have performed extra video games. The Musketeers have 4 gamers scoring in double-digits, led Zach Freemantle at 18.three factors per recreation.
Katz’s choose: Xavier
Listed here are Andy’s picks from earlier this week and the way they did:
The opposite Jimmy V Basic match-up is likely to be simply as thrilling. Two top-five groups in Baylor and Illinois battle it out in what may very well be a preview of a late event recreation this March. The Illini have one of the vital deadly guard-forward combos within the nation with Ayo Dosunmu (25.7 ppg this season) and Kofi Cockburn (11.7 rpg), however Katz thinks Baylor’s athleticism and size shall be an excessive amount of for Illinois to deal with.
Katz’s choose: Baylor
Outcome: Right! Baylor 82, Illinois 69
Exterior of the Champions Basic, there’s one other basketball occasion showcasing some high-profile groups — the Jimmy V Basic. Gonzaga vs. West Virginia ideas off Wednesday in Indianapolis with each groups undefeated heading into the match-up. Katz provides the sting to Gonzaga, however they’re going to should battle for it. WVU’s frontcourt, with Oscar Tshiebwi and Derek Culver, can match up fairly properly in opposition to Drew Timme and Anton Watson, however the distinction comes within the Zags’ backcourt with new switch Andrew Nembhard. Katz thinks he’ll be the difference-maker on this recreation.
Katz’s choose: Gonzaga
Outcome: Right! Gonzaga 87, West Virginia 82
In a typical season, any crew coming into Cameron Indoor Stadium in a non-conference recreation would have its again up in opposition to the wall. The Blue Devils are 295-9 in non-conference dwelling video games since Coach Ok took over in 1980. However this isn’t a typical season. Katz thinks the Spartans will proceed to roll within the first recreation of the Champions Basic due to their robust begin to the season and with no Cameron Crazies in attendance for the Dec. 1 match-up. MSU beat Jap Michigan and Notre Dame of their first two video games of the season.
Katz’s choose: Michigan State
Outcome: Right! Michigan State 75, Duke 69
Within the second Champions Basic match-up, we now have one other battle between school basketball powerhouses — No. 7 Kansas in opposition to No. 20 Kentucky. Not like the earlier Champions Basic recreation, this one shall be performed at a impartial web site in Indianapolis. Each groups have already got one loss. The Jayhawks misplaced to No. 1 Gonzaga, 102-90, of their first recreation of the yr, and the Wildcats have been upset a veteran-led Richmond squad, 76-64. Katz thinks Kansas’ capability to attain early within the season — placing up 90 factors in opposition to the Zags, after which 94 factors in opposition to St. Joe’s — shall be its ticket to victory.
Katz’s choose: Kansas
Outcome: Right! Kansas 65, Kentucky 62.
In a bonus choose, Katz and March Chadness broke down the match-up between No. Four Wisconsin and in-state foe Marquette. They’re going to face off Friday night time at Marquette’s dwelling courtroom, however Katz thinks it will be one other instance of how the house crew will not have the benefit they’re used to due to no followers. Additionally, Wisconsin has been rolling and may emerge because the Massive Ten Champion on the finish of the season.
Katz’s choose: Wisconsin
Outcome: Improper. Marquette 67, Wisconsin 665