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NCAA Sweet 16 Preview — PODCAST

NCAA Sweet 16 Preview — PODCAST”

The No. 7 Nevada Wolf Pack (29-7) meet the No. 11 Loyola Chicago Ramblers (30-5) in the Sweet Sixteen at Philips Arena.

An NCAA Tournament run could have major implications on the university. All were eliminated on the opening weekend, a tourney first. Nevada is favored by 1.5 points, down one from the opening line. When Selection Sunday rolled around on March 11, a good number of students who came back early gathered for a watch party with the team - something Moser has been dreaming of since his first day as coach.

I find myself in this position most Marches, and I tend to default to underdogs and other compelling narratives or individuals when it comes to finding teams that deserve my rooting interest.

DOLORES-SCHMIDT: I always start with good and gracious God, we need your help.

Fortunately, Loyola-Chicago didn't lose any practice time. The other two matchups are in the West, where No. 7 Texas A&M (22-12) meets No. 3 MI (30-7), and No. 9 Florida State (22-11) takes on No. 4 Gonzaga (32-4) at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Playing at a slow tempo will be seriously challenged by a No. 7 seed Nevada team that can really put up points. It's just more painful for the Blue Bloods because more is expected of them. What kind of guidance are you giving your players, and how do you think - how do you see this game playing out?

The game should be a battle of strength against strength as the high-powered offense of Nevada takes on the elite defense of Loyola Chicago. That year, Loyola beat two-time defending champion Cincinnati in a landmark moment for racial equality.

"These guys have been preparing for it and the reason why we can do it is these guys are winners", coach Porter Moser said. They're also one of the youngest teams in the country. They're a connected team. "They're going to embrace it".

And Mariah Musselman, the precocious daughter of the Wolf Pack's exuberant coach, has been Nevada's biggest cheerleader during its run to the Sweet 16. The Wolf Pack had a rate of 2.9 (better than their season average of 12.3), while the Bearcats posted a mark of 8.7.

To do so, they had to rally for the second straight game.

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These two have been teammates for a very long time.

If the Ramblers can get past Nevada, then beating Kentucky and Kansas State also wouldn't be out of the question. Big man Robert Williams is out to change that. "It's really big", MI coach John Beilein said.

Can't say I would mind No. 5 West Virginia, either. We've got to chase Nevada.

Four of Loyola's primary rotation players (Aundre Jackson, Clayton Custer, Marques Towns and Cameron Krutwig) shoot 55 percent or better from inside the 3-point.

Just wear 'em down, baby.

Both teams have walked a tight rope to get to this point.

Did your NCAA Tournament bracket go bust? "I was proud of him for how he acted, but I know he was probably a little unhappy with our situation for sure".

NOEL KING, BYLINE: You are 98 years old.

The South Region is wide open with the top four seeds already planning their summers.

We can tell you it is calling for 139 total points to be scored, clearing the under with 4.5 points to spare. And I don't know how it really happened.

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