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2013 NCAA Tournament Bracket West Region Instant Analysis

Mar 17, 2013, 6:35 PM EDT

Portland v Gonzaga Getty Images

The Gonzaga Bulldogs, winners of the WCC, received the top seed in the West Region and will begin play in Salt Lake City against SWAC champion Southern. Mark Few’s team went 31-2 and ran the table in league play, and they’ve lost just once in 2013 (at Butler). Ohio State, which won the Big Ten tournament, received the two-seed in the West. But the Buckeyes drew a tough matchup in the first round, as they’ll take on Iona.

Completing the top four seeds are three-seed New Mexico, winners of the Mountain West, and four-seed Kansas State. Bruce Weber’s Wildcats, which won a share of the Big 12 regular season title, will take on the winner of the opening round game between Boise State and La Salle.

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Given the amount of debate regarding Gonzaga’s status as a 1-seed, keep an eye on the 8/9 matchup between Pittsburgh and Wichita State. Both teams are physical and do a solid job of rebounding, which may help them match up with the likes of Kelly Olynyk and Elias Harris.

A sleeper in the West bracket? Wisconsin may qualify as the 5-seed, with their style being one that could prove problematic for much of the region beginning with 12-seed Ole Miss.

Some upset possibilities to keep in mind are Belmont over Arizona in Salt Lake City, and given Ohio State’s offensive struggles don’t rule out an Iona squad that ranks among the best scoring teams in the country in that one. Last year’s tournament featured two 15-seeds pulling off upsets, as Lehigh beat Duke and Norfolk State knocked off Missouri.

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Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

  1. asimonetti88 - Mar 17, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    Go Zags!

  2. manchestermiracle - Mar 17, 2013 at 8:51 PM

    Arizona loses the PAC12 championship and gets to stay home in the West. Yeah, that’s fair.

  3. rmfields - Mar 18, 2013 at 8:15 AM

    As a long time Pitt fan, I’m pretty pumped. Not to hate on Gonzaga fans, but out of all the other #1 seeds to play in the 2nd round, I’m glad it’s the Zags (that is, IF we can even beat Wichita .. remember, Pitt was an NIT – albeit NIT CHAMPION – team last year).

    But anyways, I have to say, if Pitt is ever going to make a deep run, it’s this year in the West.

    I’m wondering, though, how Pitt, ranked #17, was ranked as low as an 8th seed to begin with?!

  4. 4cornersfan - Mar 19, 2013 at 5:04 AM

    Go Lobos!! Woof! Woof! Woof!

  5. sdb74 - Mar 19, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Pitt is gong to beat Gonzaga. The Zags have played no one since Butler in early Jan. They are overrated.

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