The Sweet Sixteen leg of March Madness is on again tonight. As teams continue to match up to face each other, they continue to contemplate on their last chance to extend their hopes of reaching an NCAA Championship title.
It’s now up to the Iowa State Cyclones and the Miami Hurricanes to define who will be the last team to classify in tonight’s race to the title. They’re set to head to United Center in Chicago, Illinois.
Perhaps almost even unexpected, Miami made their way to the very top. Now it’s all up to both teams to determine which team will make it to the semifinal stage of the Midwest. With a 22-12 season record, the Cyclones might seem to be stepping into United Center with a slight edge over Miami and their 25-10 season record.
The Cyclones have an advantage for tonight’s game. Perhaps it’s an overall perception of their season performance or just the fact that Iowa has topped among leading seeds throughout the regular season.
Some continue to point at top figures, such as Izaiah Brockington and Tyrese Hunter, as the ones responsible for allowing the Cyclones to reach this stage of the season. Brockington now leads Iowa with 17.1 points and 6.8 rebounds, while Hunter is now standing with 4.9 assists and two steals per game.
The Cyclones are edging out the competition, but not with top league numbers. Still, they have surpassed LSU and Wisconsin to prove that they are worthy of extending their race for the title. Now, just one game away from the semifinals, the Cyclones might have what it takes to extend their postseason feat.
Perhaps not many would have pictured Miami reaching this stage of the season. Yet the Hurricanes are on a roll. With a solid 68-66 win over USC and an outstanding victory over top seed Auburn on a 79-61 score, the Hurricanes have done their part.
It’s now up to players such as Kameron McGusty and Charlie Moore to keep pulling the Hurricanes forward. McGusty still leads Miami with 17.5 points, while Moore now stands with 4.6 assists and 2.1 steals per game.
Miami might come out as the obvious underdog for tonight’s matchup. Yet, with two recent performances proving that no top seed can top them, the race for a championship title is now more real than ever.
Miami is in a tight spot but is up for the challenge. Despite low expectations for survival, the Canes have stayed alive. For Iowa State, the total has gone under in four of their last five games. For Miami, the total has gone over in six of their last nine games.
Iowa State might stand as the favorite one to win, yet with odds against them, efforts will need to be doubled.
Perhaps it was Miami’s way of dropping teams like USC and Auburn in less than just a few days. It’s Miami’s time to prove that they are worthy of reaching the semifinal stage of the Midwest leg.
With numbers on their side, however, Iowa State might just be able to bring Miami’s race to an end and extend their last sprint to the final for the championship title.
Godds Pick/Prediction: The Cyclones to win and the under hits.