Men's Basketball 2018 NCAA Tournament West Region Sweet 16 Game Breakdowns

West Region Sweet 16 Game Breakdowns
Gonzaga is back in the Sweet 16 after knocking off Ohio State 90-84 last Saturday in Boise. Zach Norvell Jr. had 28 points and Rui Hachimura added 25 to lead the Bulldogs to victory. Gonzaga shot 53.4 percent from the floor and only turned the ball over 13 times. Defensively, the Bulldogs took care of business on the boards as they outrebounded the Buckeyes 39-25 and that is something that will have to continue against an athletic Florida State team.
The Seminoles upset Xavier 75-70 as they closed out the upset win over the Musketeers with an 18-4 run to punch their ticket to Los Angeles. Braian Angola led Florida State with 15 points and Trent Forrest chipped in 14 points to pace a very balanced scoring attack. The turnover battle was another big reason why the Seminoles moved on as they forced 18 Xavier turnovers on Sunday night.
Keys to the game for Gonzaga will be to let Zach Norvell Jr. set the tone at both ends of the court and take advantage of their experience of playing in the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament. For the Seminoles, they will need to use their depth to try and wear down the Bulldogs over the course of 40 minutes. Also, Florida State will need to win the rebounding battle as they have on average outrebounded their opponents by about three rebounds per game. Phil Cofer and Terance Mann will need to combine for at least 15 rebounds between them on Thursday night. In the end, Gonzaga is the more battle tested team and should move on to the Elite Eight.
Jordan Poole had one of the legendary March Madness moments for Michigan on Saturday night. Poole knocked down a miraculous game winning three-point shot to give the Wolverines a 64-63 win over Houston in the second round. This will be the fourth trip to the Sweet 16 in the past six years, so this is very familiar territory for head coach John Beilein and his squad. Now, for the Wolverines to move on to the Elite Eight they will need to be better offensively, which is easier said than done. Moritz Wagner will need to hold his own down low against a very big athletic Texas A&M front line for Michigan to be successful on Thursday. Charles Matthews should have plenty of opportunities as well to attack the Aggies backcourt and will need to have 15-18-point type of performance on Thursday night.
Texas A&M absolutely dominated North Carolina in Charlotte on Sunday as they beat the Tar Heels 86-65. T.J. Starks scored 21 points to lead the Aggies, hitting 7 of 15 shots from the floor. Robert Williams was outstanding as well, collecintg 13 rebounds against North Carolina. Williams should have plenty of opportunities to dominate down low against Michigan as they don’t have the size to matchup well with Texas A&M’s bigs. Admon Gilder, D.J. Hogg, and Tyler Davis are also dangerous when they are at their best at the offensive end of the court. The team that can do the best job of staying patient offensively and knock down quality shots is going to move on to the Elite Eight. This game should be a toss-up that goes down to the wire.