This is why it’s so hard to have a perfect bracket in the NCAA tournament. Because of games like this.
The heavily-favored, 2nd-ranked Michigan State Spartans just lost a close first-round match-up to 15th-ranked Middle Tennessee, busting up brackets all across the nation. How much have brackets been busted? According to the Capital One NCAA March Madness Bracket challenge, 22% of voters chose Michigan State to not only reach the Final Four, but win the National Championship, which will take place on April 4 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.
Spartans star Denzel Valentine scored just 10 points in the game, after averaging 19.4 points per game all season, earning the Big Ten Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award, and Big Ten Player of the Year honors. It’s a tough way for the decorated senior to go out, and it certainly won’t help his NBA Draft hopes, which were already up in the air entering the season.
On the other side, it was a monster game from Middle Tennessee’s Reggie Upshaw, who dropped 21 points and grabbed 4 rebounds to pace his now Cinderella squad. Their next game? Up against the 10th-ranked Syracuse Orange, who pulled off a mild upset of their own earlier today when they won big against 7th-ranked Dayton.