The Final Four kicks off tomorrow with 2 games slated on Saturday and the championship game on Monday night. With blue blood programs like UNC, Kentucky and Duke among others losing earlier in the tournament, many of the top prospects have had their seasons conclude. That being said, there are some solid players remaining in the tournament, headlined by Jarrett Culver and Deandre Hunter.
NBA Prospects in the Final Four:
• Jarrett Culver (Texas Tech)
• Cassius Winston (Michigan State)
• Deandre Hunter (Virginia)
• Ty Jerome (Virginia)
• Bryce Brown (Auburn)
#3 Texas Tech vs. #2 Michigan State (8:49 pm on CBS)
Michigan State is coming off their big win against tournament favorite Duke, while Texas Tech took down Gonzaga in the first round. Cassius Winston is leading the way for the Spartans, while Xavier Tillman had a big 19 points in the Duke game. As with any Tom Izzo led team, the Spartans play solid team defense and can find the open man. Texas Tech has been dominating on defense throughout the tournament, making an elite offensive team like Michigan look completely out of sorts. Jarrett Culver has been taking over games controlling the offense, and if he can can knock down some outside shots to go with his ability to get to the basket, he could be in for another big game. This one should be close and come down to some big possessions late, with both teams being so solid defensively. Don’t just expect defense in this one, both the Spartans and the Red Raiders can put up points if the game is at a face pace.
#1 Virginia vs. #5 Auburn (6:09 pm on CBS)
Virginia looked nervous and rattled in their first round game this year, following their historic loss to 16 seeded UMBC last season. They broke through that and reached the final four for the first time since the 1980’s, and they are on a mission to cut down the nets and redeem themselves in the history books. Ty Jerome and Kyle Guy can hit three pointers in bunches, and Deandre Hunter completely take over a game on both ends of the floor. Obviously with Virginia, their defense will be the key and that will be more important than ever with their upcoming game against the offensively minded Tigers. Auburn brings play making and shooting to the table with Bryce Brown and Jared Harper who are a threat to hit a three pointer at any point in the possession. The loss of Chuma Okeke did not slow them down against Kentucky, but it will not get any easier facing the UVA defense. This is a classic offense vs. defense type of game with Virginia looking to slow the pace down, and Auburn attempting to play fast to get fast break and three point opportunities. If Auburn is making their shots it should go there way, and likewise if Virginia is able to limit the Auburn offense they will be on a good path to victory.