It was apparent last season that Larry Krystkowiak was on to something. However, no one knew he was on to this. The Utah Utes have staked their claim as one of the premier teams out west and it’s because of the talent they can roll out there.
The Utes are led by do everything guard Delon Wright, who is tracking to be a first-team all-American. The senior guard is averaging nearly 15 points, over four rebounds and a little under six assists per game. He leads an attack that also features Jakob Poeltl, the Austrian import that has NBA scouts watching, and three-point marksman Brandon Taylor.
They are efficient. They can defend. They’re big. They’re good. This is a team that appears to be a legitimate contender to get to the Final Four.
Stock Up: Albany. The Great Danes are undefeated in the America East and seem very interested in making a return trip to the NCAA tournament.
Stock Down: Texas. The Longhorns have lost 5 out of their last 7. I understand that the Big XII is competitive, but they should probably put a few wins together.
Stock Up: UCLA. The Bruins aren’t in the bracket below, but a 2-0 week would be huge after beating Colorado and Utah last week.
Stock Down: VCU. Unfortunately for the Rams; Briante Weber went down with a season-ending knee injury in their loss to Richmond. He was the heart and soul and the key to VCU’s havoc defense. It’ll be interesting to see if VCU can bounce back.
On to the bracket.
Last Four In: Michigan St, Miami(FL), NC State, Iowa
Last Four Out: Texas A&M, Colorado St, Temple, St. John’s
This bracket is good for games thru 2/1
1.Kentucky16.St. Francis(NY)/North Florida Louisville
5.Wichita St12.Stephen F. Austin Seattle
6.San Diego St11.Iowa/Miami(FL) Pittsburgh
3.Villanova14.North Carolina Central
1.Virginia16.New Mexico St Charlotte
5.Georgetown12.NC State/Michigan St Columbus
6.Northern Iowa11.Mississippi Louisville
1.Kansas16.North Dakota St/Colgate Omaha
6.Ohio St11.George Washington Pittsburgh
7.Indiana10.Old Dominion Portland
1.Arizona16.Georgia Southern Portland
5.Butler12.Murray St Jacksonville
4.West Virginia13.Louisiana Tech
6.VCU11.Kansas St Columbus
3.Notre Dame14.William & Mary
7.Arkansas10.Seton Hall Seattle