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No. 1 Kansas vs. No. 9 Michigan State Prediction, Game Preview

Derrick Walton Jr. scored 26 points and MI made 16 3-pointers Friday to hold off Oklahoma State 92-91 in the first round of the Midwest Regional. Kansas enters the matchup as the heavy favorite to win this game and is picked by many to go deep into the tournament.

It looked like that streak might end Friday after Oklahoma State opened the second half on a 12-5 run to take a 52-46 lead. Though there was only one seed difference between Michigan State and Miami, the way the Spartans pounded the Hurricanes was surprising. However, the Spartans were selected to the tournament for the 20 straight year under coach Tom Izzo.

Ronnie Harrell Jr. scored a career-high 15 points in Creighton's 40-percent shooting day. "People that don't think our league is any good, tell them to go play Wisconsin".

Miami will bring in the best recruiting class in school history on the heels of this year's class that previously was given that distinction.

The Jayhawks have to feel at least a little uneasy about it, especially if they watched any of Michigan State's first-round victory over eighth-seeded Miami.

The problem was that MI was scheduled to play its first tournament game the next day in DC at 12:20 p.m. If they win the turnover battle and are able to cash those Kansas turnovers into points then they'll be able to hang around with the Jayhawks. MI big man D.J. Wilson iced the game for MI by hitting both of his free throws with 3 seconds remaining.

Davon Reed had a decent game with 12 points and three rebounds. Freshman Winston delivered one of his best all-around games, handing out five assists and showing improved defense in his 22 minutes. Irvin finished with 16 points.

SMU's Shake Milton missed a floater at the buzzer.

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USC will now play No. 3 Baylor in the second round on Sunday.

USC also rallied from a big deficit in the second half in its First Four win over Providence.

The easy part of the NCAA Tournament is over for the Kansas Jayhawks.

Jo Lual-Acuil scored 16 points and Johnathan Motley added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Bears (26-7), who were upset in the first round by Georgia State and Yale the previous two years.

Ian Baker and Braxton Huggins each scored 19 points for New Mexico State (28-6). The two main returners from that '08 team, Sherron Collins (25 points, eight assists) and Cole Aldrich (14 points, 11 rebounds), both had solid days, but the rest of the starting lineup combined for just 11 points on 11 shots as the Jayhawks quickly fell behind by double-digits and never really got back into the game. It made 16 of them, good for a staggering 55.2 percent. I felt like I'm going to regret some of that when I saw the second half (of its game) on TV.

A couple of 11-seeds survived and advanced to the second round on Sunday; USC nipped SMU 66-65 in the East Region, while Rhode Island got past Creighton 84-72 in the Midwest.

But now he faces a Michigan State team in the first round that is making its 20th consecutive trip to the "Big Dance". Cincinnati continued its reputation as a defensive threat by holding Kansas State to 38.9 percent shooting from the field.

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