Originally posted on No 2 Minute Warning  |  Last updated 3/22/13
The first round is in the books and now it is on to round two of the NCAA Tournament Football Picks. In the South we saw top seed Kansas take an early exit against Western Kentucky and the Hilltoppers are now looking to make a surprising run. Elsewhere it was mostly chalk, with Michigan, Florida and Oklahoma all moving one step closer to the regional final. Remember, at No 2-Minute Warning we are making our picks solely on which school would win a football game if the two sides were to lace them up and tussle in the trenches. East Regional | South Regional | Midwest Regional | West Regional How did we get here? The first round in the South region featured one of the top upsets, with 16 seed Western Kentucky knocking off top seed Kansas. In a region full of some FBS vs FCS match-ups, North Carolina, Akron, Michigan, and Florida all advanced without much of a problem. UCLA knocked off Minnesota in one of the more attractive match-ups in the region and Oklahoma topped San Diego State. Georgetown also picked up a victory be default against Florida Gulf Coast, moving them in to round two against Oklahoma. Now, on to the Second Round… Second Round Western Kentucky vs. North Carolina Can the Hilltoppers pull off a Cinderella finish one more week and advance to the Sweet 16? It certainly is not out of the question but North Carolina enters this match-up as the favorite. Better overall athleticism and more consistent offense will make the Tar Heels difficult to keep up with under the Red Bull offensive style under Larry Fedora. But Western Kentucky does not back down and they give UNC all they can handle throughout the game. The Tar Heels move on here, but have to really earn it in the fourth quarter. Akron vs. Michigan Akron’s run in the tournament was expected to be a short one, but they picked up an easier than expected win against VCU’s club football team in round one. Now Akron meets up with Michigan, and they will need all the advice they can get from staffer Jim Tressel, who once dominated the Wolverines as Ohio State’s head coach. All of Tressel’s wisdom and insight though will not be enough as Akron just does not have the kind of talent on their roster to keep up with Michigan in this one. The Wolverines score an easy win over the Zips and move on to take on North Carolina in the Sweet 16. UCLA vs. Florida This may be the best match-up of the second round, at least in the South Region. The Florida Gators look to be a strong favorite in the South but have to come up solid in a big game, unlike the Sugar Bowl. UCLA is turning eyes in southern California and should have the offense that gives Florida some problems at times, but the Gators turn out to be too strong defensively for UCLA’s young offensive stars to beat over four quarters. The Gators advance to the next round for what should be a great Sweet 16 match-up… Oklahoma vs. Georgetown Georgetown was fortunate to advance this far by picking up a default victory in round one over Florida Gulf Coast. Next up for the lowly FCS program is a mega mismatch with perennial Big 12 contender Oklahoma. The Sooners rest all of their starters after the first quarter and breeze by the Hoyas on their way to the Sweet 16. The win sets up a rematch of the 2009 BCS Championship Game against the Florida Gators. The winner of the game takes the label of South Region favorite but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.
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