NCAA Tournament: Capsules on All 68 Teams -- East Regional

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Worthwhile tidbitys about all 17 teams in the East Regional

East Regional

1. DUKE (29-5)

Name to Know: Zion Williamson, presumptive first overall pick in 2019 NBA Draft

Best Wins: Virginia (twice), North Carolina, Texas Tech, Florida State

Worst Losses: Syracuse

Famous alumnus: Adam Silver, NBA commissioner

Considerations: Three Blue Devils players are expected to be NBA lottery picks, but they lost in the second round last year as a No. 2 seed.

Comment: Anything less than a Final Four would be a disappointment.

16. NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL (18-15)

Name to Know: Raasean Davis, first-team all-MEAC

Best Wins: North Carolina A&T (twice), Norfolk State

Worst Losses: Nicholls, Coastal Carolina, Coppin State

Famous alumnus: Andre Leon Talley, fashion icon

Considerations: MEAC teams recorded three of the biggest NCAA Tournament upsets – No. 15 Coppin State over No. 2 South Carolina in 1997, No. 15 Hampton over No. 2 Iowa State in 2001, and No. 14 Norfolk State over No. 3 Missouri in 2012

Comment: Eagles may get to play a second game

16. NORTH DAKOTA STATE (18-15)

Name to Know: Vinnie Shahid, team’s leading scorer

Best Wins: Omaha, UC Santa Barbara

Worst Losses: Incarnate Word, Denver

Famous alumnus: Ilhan Omar, U.S. Congresswoman

Considerations: Bison upset fifth-seeded Oklahoma in 2014 NCAA Tournament

Comment: That loss to Incarnate Word removes any thought that North Dakota State can pull an upset

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8. VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH (25-7)

Name to Know: Marcus Evans, first-team all-Atlantic-10

Best Wins: Temple, Dayton (twice), Texas (road)

Worst Losses: Rhode Island (twice)

Famous alumnus: David Baldacci, best-selling novelist

Considerations: Rams finished first in Atlantic-10, but Marcus Evans’ knee injury could be a concern

Comment: VCU is primed to do well in the postseason – if Evans is healthy

9. CENTRAL FLORIDA (23-8)

Name to Know: B.J. Taylor, first-team all-AAC

Best Wins: Temple, Houston (road), Cincinnati

Worst Losses: Florida Atlantic (home), Missouri

Famous alumnus: Daniel Tosh, comedian

Considerations: UCF is 0-4 alltime in the NCAA Tournament and is in it for the first time since 2005

Comment: Maybe one postseason win for Johnny Dawkins’ team . . . maybe

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5. MISSISSIPPI STATE (23-10)

Name to Know: Quinndary Weatherspoon, first-team all-SEC

Best Wins: Cincinnati, Auburn, Wofford

Worst Losses: Alabama, South Carolina

Famous alumnus: John Grisham, author

Considerations: Former UCLA coach Ben Howland has the Bulldogs in the NCAAs for the first time since 2009

Comment: Mississippi State beats the teams it is supposed to beat and loses to the teams it is supposed to lose to, so it may win a game

12. LIBERTY (28-6)

Name to Know: Scottie James, Atlantic Sun all-conference

Best Wins: UCLA (road), Lipscomb (road)

Worst Losses: Vanderbilt, North Florida

Famous alumnus: TobyMac, hip-hop artist

Considerations: Liberty is 0-3 in three NCAA Tournament appearances

Comment: Flames are not terrible, and could spring an upset

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4. VIRGINIA TECH (24-8)

Name to Know: Kerry Blackshear Jr., second-team all-ACC

Best Wins: Purdue, Duke

Worst Losses: Penn State, Clemson

Famous alumnus: Michael Vick

Considerations: Hokies lost in the NCAA first round each of the past two years

Comment: Good defense, but Virginia Tech does not score enough to go far

13. SAINT LOUIS (23-12)

Name to Know: Javon Bess, Atlantic-10 Defensive Player of the Year

Best Wins: Seton Hall (road), Dayton (twice), Davidson

Worst Losses: Richmond (home), Pittsburgh

Famous alumnus: Robert Guillaume, actor

Considerations: Billikens finished tied for sixth in the Atlantic 10

Comment: Saint Louis is hot team, so it may cause a problem

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6. MARYLAND (22-10)

Name to Know: Bruno Fernando, excellent rebounder, shot-blocker

Best Wins: Purdue, Wisconsin, Iowa (road)

Worst Losses: Illinois (home), Penn State, Nebraska

Famous alumnus: Jim Henson, Muppets founder

Considerations: Not much of a three-point shooting team, but Terps rebound well

Comment: Maryland will advance only if it has a favorable matchup

11. BELMONT (26-5)

Name to Know: Dylan Windler, first-team all-Ohio Valley Conference

Best Wins: Lipscomb (twice), Murray State, UCLA (road)

Worst Losses: Green Bay

Famous alumnus: Brad Paisley, country music singer-songwriter

Considerations: Bruins always look dangerous but have never won an NCAA Tournament game

Comment: High-scoring Belmont capable of an upset

11. TEMPLE (23-9)

Name to Know: Shizz Alston, first-team all-AAC

Best Wins: Houston, Central Florida

Worst Losses: Penn, Tulsa

Famous alumnus: Bill Cosby

Considerations: Alston scored more than 20 points in seven straight games heading into AAC tournament, and the Owls won six of them

Comment: Alston might carry Temple to one win, but that is about it.

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3. LSU (26-6)

Name to Know: Tremont Waters, team leader in scoring, assists

Best Wins: Kentucky (road), Tennessee

Worst Losses: Oklahoma State, Arkansas (home)

Famous alumnus: Hubert Humphrey

Considerations: Can LSU win with head coach Will Wade suspended?

Comment: Tigers are playing pretty well now, but without Wade, they are vulnerable

14. YALE (22-7)

Name to Know: Miye Oni, Ivy League Player of the Year,

Best Wins: Miami, Princeton (three times), Harvard

Worst Losses: Columbia (home), Penn

Famous alumnus: George Bush (both of them)

Considerations: Yale upset Baylor in 2015 NCAA Tournament

Comment: The Bulldogs are pretty good, so foes better be careful

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7. LOUISVILLE (20-13)

Name to Know: Jordan Nwora

Best Wins: Michigan State, North Carolina

Worst Losses: Boston College, Pittsburgh

Famous alumnus: Mitch McConnell

Considerations: Outstanding free-throw shooters, if it comes down to that

Comment: Struggles down the stretch suggests early exit

10. MINNESOTA (21-13)

Name to Know: Jordan Murphy, second-team all-Big Ten

Best Wins: Wisconsin (road), Purdue (twice), Washington

Worst Losses: Boston College, Illinois, Nebraska, Rutgers

Famous alumnus: Bob Dylan

Considerations: Minnesota has won one NCAA Tournament game since reaching the Final Four in 1997

Comment: Can’t see how this team can win more than one game – if that.

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2. MICHIGAN STATE (28-6)

Name to Know: Cassius Winston, Big Ten Player of the Year

Best Wins: Michigan (three times), Purdue, Wisconsin (twice)

Worst Losses: Indiana (home), Illinois

Famous alumnus: James Caan

Considerations: Spartans excel on defense and rebounding and share the ball

Comment: Tom Izzo’s reputation as a great postseason coach took a hit the past three years, but Spartans could reach the Final Four this time

15. BRADLEY (20-14)

Name to Know: Darrell Brown, second-team all-Missouri Valley Conference

Best Wins: Penn State, Loyola-Chicago

Worst Losses: Indiana State, Valparaiso

Famous alumnus: Kirby Puckett, baseball Hall of Famer

Considerations: Braves finished fifth in the Missouri Valley Conference

Comment: Unlikely to do much

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