The bracket is set for the 2022 NCAA Tournament and the South Region is loaded with contenders. No. 1 seed Arizona has been one of the big surprises this season, but No. 2 Villanova has the most recent tournament success of the teams in this group. No. 3 Tennessee and No. 5 Houston won their respective conference tournaments, while No. 4 Illinois might have the biggest matchup nightmare with Kofi Cockburn.
We’ll take an in-depth look at the South Region and provide insights for how to navigate your bracket picks. Remember, this is March and truly anything can happen.
Which games are ripe for an upset
No. 10 Loyola-Chicago and No. 11 Michigan both have the talent to take down their opponents, but the 5-12 and 4-13 matchups are also worth seeing. Houston lacks the star power from last year’s Final Four team and has played down to opponents, while Illinois is 5-4 in their last nine games and lost to Indiana. The Ramblers and Wolverines will be the top picks to make it to the round of 32.
Potentially popular picks to fade
The Cougars and Illini are worth fading for the reasons mentioned above, but there’s actually a good chance one of them reaches the Sweet 16. No. 3 Tennessee has been inconsistent all year, so the Volunteers might ultimately be the group to avoid picking for an Elite Eight or Final Four spot.
Who will reach the Final Four
It’s not fun to go chalk in this region, but both Wildcats have very little to fault. Arizona and Villanova are both coming off conference tournament titles and play fundamentally sound basketball. It’ll likely be Arizona and Villanova in the Elite Eight, with the winner advancing to the Final Four.