Missouri Basketball: Tigers sneak into NCAA Tournament

ST LOUIS, MO - MARCH 08: Jontay Porter
ST LOUIS, MO - MARCH 08: Jontay Porter /

At the very least, it’s been a few years since the Missouri Tigers played in the NCAA Tournament. After watching Michael Porter, Jr. succumb to a back injury two minutes into the Tigers’ first game, fans were wrought with frustration. But, the Tigers made it, and MPJ has returned.

Best/Worst Case Scenario for Mizzou: We know how inconsistent this team is. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if Florida State beat the Tigers in the first round. On the other hand, with Michael Porter, Jr. back in action, they have enough talent to beat a top seed in Xavier.

Villanova lost as a top seed last year to a talented Wisconsin team, and I think Mizzou could pull off a similar upset this year. So while a trip to the Sweet 16 looks doable, I wouldn’t count on the Tigers getting much further.

What I Think Will Happen: The Tigers beat the Seminoles in the first round and while they give everything the Musketeers of Xavier can handle, in the end, the top seed pulls it out and sends Mizzou home on the first weekend.

More from Truman's Tales

So, here are my Final Four teams: Cincinnati, Duke, Gonzaga and Villanova. I don’t have a good feeling about Virginia in the south. At some point, I think they go cold and their defense won’t be good enough to bail them out.

Kentucky is really hot right now, but the Wildcats can’t get past the Bearcats in the Elite Eight. They match up with Gonzaga, a team somewhat lost in the shuffle this year. That region is tough, with three Elite Eight teams from a year ago in Xavier, Carolina and the Zags.

After surviving a scare from Mizzou in the second round, will Xavier trip-up against Gonzaga in the Sweet 16 who gets revenge on UNC in the Elite Eight. Villanova has the easiest path to the Final Four, in my opinion, and if there is a matchup with a lower digit seed in the Elite Eight, this looks like the best bet.

Duke somehow escapes a region with Kansas and Michigan State to get back to the Final Four. In the semis I like Villanova to beat Duke and for Cincinnati to continue their magical run by defeating the Zags and then the Bearcats cap off their great run by beating Nova to win it all. That said, your opinion as probably as good as mine. I just like to go out on a limb.