Predicting the NCAA Tournament First Round upsets

One of the best things about the NCAA Tournament is the upsets. This year, there are bound to be a few. You can pick your upsets and fill out your bracket by joining the BT Powerhouse bracket pool HERE. The BT Powerhouse writers predict their first round upsets after the jump!

David P Funk's upset picks-

South Region:

-- 10 Xavier over 7 Notre Dame
Which of the Irish stops Tu Holloway? Guards make a difference in the tournament.

West Region:

-- 12 Long Beach State over 5 New Mexico
Though New Mexico comes from what is probably a tougher conference (Mountain West), LBSU played a tough nonconference schedule and hung with some of the best teams in the country.

-- 10 Virginia over 7 Florida
Of Virgina's nine losses, seven came by three points or fewer and one was dealt to it by Midwest top seed UNC. The Cavs are better than they look on paper.

Midwest Region:

-- 10 Purdue over 7 St. Mary's
If Purdue is hitting, they can beat almost anyone.

-- 11 NC State over 6 San Diego State
I'm not buying the Mountain West hype. The Wolfpack almost knocked off UNC in the ACC tourney. Mark Gottfried has this team moving up, not only this season but into the future.

-- 9 Alabama over 8 Creighton
I like Creighton. I just like Alabama more.

East Region:

-- 11 Texas over 6 Cincinnati
Cincinnati proved early on that it wasn't a mature team. Texas comes out of the second best conference in the nation.


StegerWithSwagg's upset picks-

South Region:

-- 13 New Mexico State over 4 Indiana.
Maybe I am crazy, but I disagree with the majority and think the MWC is a fine conference. New Mexico State is a very physical team that will be able to get to the line a lot. With the lack of depth for the Hoosiers, especially now without Jones, it'll be a scary contest.

-- 10 Xavier over 7 Notre Dame.
Tu Holloway. Enough said. Any mid-major squad succeeds because of its best player. Xavier has that.

-- 14 South Dakota State over 3 Baylor.
Baylor has Perry Jones, Quincy Miller, and other studs that should have good NBA careers someday. Nate Wolters might have one too. While the Golden Gophers of Minnesota were busy keeping both Royce White and Rodney Williams in-state, Wolters drifted off of the city of St. Cloud and into the laps of the Jackrabbits. Wolters has a deadly shot and has done it all. He averaged over six assists and five rebounds a game to go along with his 21 points a game.

West Region:

-- 10 Virginia over 7 Florida.
At the beginning of the season, I would put fake money on Florida to do well and make it far in the tournament. That's just not the case after the season that the Gators have had. The Gators wins are not impressive, and on the other hand, Virginia plays physical basketball and can manhandle Florida around.

East Region:

-- 12 Harvard over 5 Vanderbilt.
I get that Vanderbilt has three really good players, but they haven't played well as a whole unit. That's not the case with Harvard...they play great fundamentally sound basketball. If Harvard gets the game down to its tempo, I see a very low scoring game between UW and Harvard in the next round.

OBrienSchofieldismyHero's upset picks-

West Region:

-- 12 Long Beach State over 5 New Mexico
Similar reasons to David: Not awed by the MWC, and UNM is eventually going to bite the dust.

-- 13 Davidson over 4 Louisville
Davidson's on the other side of the bracket, so the more suffering they inflict, the better.

East Region:

-- 12 Harvard over 5 Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt probably could have lost 3 times to UK in the same season, but Calipari bafflingly let the Commodores off the hook. Harvard is a tough matchup and if shots don't fall for Vandy, Stallings could once again fail to advance to the 2nd day of the NCAA Tournament.

Midwest Region:

-- 12 Cal (over USF) winner over 5 Temple
Since Fran Dunphy took over, Temple's lone NCAA Tournament win came over Penn State. They're 1-4 in the NCAA Tournament, defense or not. If USF beats Cal, throw this prediction out the window; USF was all kinds of horrific in OOC (they lost to Penn State, if you want some perspective)

-- 14 Belmont over 3 Georgetown
John Thompson III's teams have a penchant for getting their asses handed to them in the first round. This may be no different.

-- 10 Purdue over 7 St. Mary's
Look, I don't want to pick against St. Mary's, but the fact is that Matt Painter has never lost in the first game of the NCAA Tournament. That trend should continue.

apy5000's upset picks-

West Region:

-- 12 Long Beach State over 5 New Mexico

Both of these teams won their conference tournaments, but I feel like The Beach is more battle hardened thanks to a more intense non-conference schedule. Long Beach State played road games at Louisville, North Carolina and Kansas. Although none of those trips resulted in victories, the tough schedule paid dividends in the regular season and it may continue to do so in the postseason.

East Region:

-- 11 Texas over 6 Cincinnati
Cincy has a number of impressive victories to speak of, but they've also fallen flat against Rutgers, St. John's and USF. Texas has less big wins, but also less bad losses. The Longhorns are a stat-lover's delight with a #27 Kenpom ranking compared to #31 for Cincinnati.

Midwest Region:

-- 12 Cal over 5 Temple
The Pac-12 was disrespected by the selection committee when regular season champ Washington was left out of the field, but Cal is there to exact revenge. Cal must first get past USF in a first four game before they unseat the Owls. Temple definitely has the edge in the impressive wins department, and both teams struggled down the stretch, but Cal did have a tougher conference slate, and that will give them a good enough chance.

-- 11 NC State over 6 San Diego
The Wolfpack didn't get its best win of the season until this past week when it upset Virginia in an ACC quarterfinal match-up. This is another case of me picking a team with a rugged schedule over a big fish in a small pond. In the non-conference schedule, SDSU defeated Long Beach State, Arizona and Cal. That's not bad, but it's not that impressive either. NC State is coming in hot, following the win over Virginia and a very close loss to North Carolina.

-- 14 Belmont over 3 Georgetown
Belmont has not played a tournament team since it lost to Memphis back on November 15. That said, the Bruins have dominated the Atlantic Sun conference and Georgetown is coming in a little shaky. Lately, the Hoyas have feasted on the bottom of the Big East while relying on solid wins in December and January to hold up their resume. Last season, many picked Belmont to upset Wisconsin in the first round after Wisconsin looked completely awful losing to Penn State in the Big Ten tournament. That didn't work out, but perhaps everyone was a year too early.

babaoreally's upset picks-

East Region:

-- 11 Texas over 6 Cincinnati
Texas could have been on the outside looking in, but they got the benefit of the doubt. It seems like one bubble team always plays better in the tourney than they have all season. I'll go with Texas as that team this year.

It looks like most of us think the midwest region will be upset city... now that you have seen our upsets.. go pick your own and join our bracket pool HERE. Yahoo! Tourney Pick'em supports SBNation and the best college sports tournament of the year. Join the bracket pools of Drew Brees, Michael Phelps, and Lil Wayne-- all while competing in the $5 million Perfect Bracket and $10,000 Best Bracket Sweepstakes. Be part of the best and biggest Yahoo! Sports tourney game yet – sign up today!

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