2013 March Madness: #8 Pittsburgh vs #9 Wichita State

Wichita+State+CheerleaderMany of the most entertaining first-round games in the NCAA Tournament have been when the #8 seed faces the #9 seed.

#8 Pittsburgh (24-8) vs. #9 Wichita State (26-8) figures to be a close on.

This will be a litmus test for today’s college basketball game. By pairing a team from a power six conference against a promising mid-major, you will see the parity in today’s game.

In the last year of the Big East, as we know it, go out with a bang or will the teams stumble?

Who do you think will win? We help you fill out your bracket.

Coach Jamie Dixon always has his teams ready for the NCAA Tournament. When they’ve appeared in the tournament, there has only been one season when they failed to make the second-round.

After a down year last season, Pittsburgh bounced right back this year. If you go through their schedule, they did pad their resumé up with a cupcake non-conference schedule. Their only power conference game was against Michigan on a neutral site; a game they lost.

Pitt’s Tray Woodall and Lamar Patterson are holdover from better years. They lead this team to some marquee Big East wins. They won games at home against Syracuse, at Cincinnati and their most impressive win was a blowout at Georgetown.

The Wichita State Shockers are not your usual mid-major. Mid-major teams from the Missouri Valley conference who have made the tournament in the past, live and die by the three-point shot. The Shockers are not good around the perimeter, so they rely on the inside game using forwards Carl Hall and Cleanthony Early.

This game will be close. When games are close, push your chips to the side with experience. Pitt has players on their roster with NCAA Tournament experience. It will be close, but I’m picking Pitt to squeak out a win.

Prediction: #8 Pittsburgh Panthers

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