NCAA Bracket Breakdown: How the West Region Stacks for San Diego State
San Diego State faces Houston in the opening round of 64.
How the West breaks down for the Aztecs
San Diego State goes head-to-head against Houston on Thursday night in the opening round of 64 games in the NCAA Tournament. Houston comes off a loss against Cincinnati in the AAC tournament. San Diego State is the hottest team in the country rattling off 9-straight victories, and is being called an early Cinderella team.
The West bracket could be the toughest of the four regions, which include both of last year’s teams in the championship game and a dark horse favorite from the Big East to win it all.
Let’s talk about what lies ahead for the Aztecs in the West region.
The Round of 32: The Near Future
If San Diego State can resume their level at play, and keep it up against Houston, they would face off against the winner of Michigan-Montana. One can imagine the storyline across college hoops if a San Diego-Michigan matchup arises. The team Steve Fisher and Brian Dutcher built from scratch faces the school that disavows the accomplishments Fisher and Dutcher brought to Ann Arbor. Don’t forget about the Montana team that beat Pitt early in the season and almost upset Washington in Seattle.
The Sweet 16 and Beyond
North Carolina, Texas A&M, Providence
If San Diego State continues an upset streak, the University of North Carolina would likely win out to see the Sweet 16. Texas A&M and Providence looks to be a physical game and would leave them a little bruised against the Tarheels. It doesn’t get easier for these gritty little Aztecs after the Sweet 16. The top half of the West bracket features some very name brand schools, but it also includes a team San Diego State can beat.
The Big Names at the Top Half
Xavier, Ohio State, Gonzaga
Xavier earned their spot atop the West bracket dominating Big East play. The Big East owns 2 of the 4 top seeds, and Xavier looks to be a strong contender to be the last team standing.
Ohio State returns to the NCAA tournament after a 3-year hiatus. Their resume bolsters wins against Michigan, Michigan State, and Purdue.
When it comes to the last team standing, Gonzaga was almost that team in 2017. A few buckets here and there and the Zags would be the returning champs, not the runner-up. This is the team if the Aztecs make it this far they would leave to face.