5. Arkansas (26-8, 13-5/SEC)– Pig Sooie, indeed. At 26-8, Arkansas posted its highest win total since 1995, when legendary coach Nolan Richardson had the Hogs in the national title game for the second year in a row.
These aren’t those Razorbacks, though they still play with a reckless, “40 Minutes of Hell” style that can be just that for opponents. But good for Hogs fans, who have waited a long time to see their team become a legit Top 25 outfit.
These Razorbacks are led by 6-11 sophomore Bobby Portis, whose name is appearing on plenty of All-American lists and NBA Draft boards. That’s because Portis is skilled–he’s got reliable post moves and an NBA body–and used them to put up 17.5 points and 8.6 rebounds per game this season.
6-6 junior guard Michael Qualls is quick, athletic and solid too–averaging 15.5 points and 5.3 rebounds per game this season.
16th Points per game (78)
12th Assists per game (16.1)
33rd Steals per game (7.8)
12. Wofford (28-6, 16-2/Southern)–The Terriers have plenty of NCAA Tournament experience, having reached the Big Dance three times since 2010. Wofford has yet to win a game, but they haven’t been an easy out in the Round of 64.
This Wofford team is probably its best yet, and it showed during the non-conference schedule, as the Terriers took down NC State and MAAC champion Iona. They enter the NCAAs having won 15 of their last 16 games.
Three players average in double figures in scoring for Wofford, including senior guard Karl Cochran, who led the team at 14.6 per. Junior guard Spencer Collins put up 11.6 per on 46.2 % shooting.
27th Points Allowed (59.8)
272nd Rebounds per game (32.4)
PREDICTION: Wofford is a good team, but may have been a bit overseeded at 12. This team is going to have problems with big man Bobby Portis, and it could struggle trying to keep the game where it likes it: in the 50’s. Given a different matchup, this could have been a first-round upset pick, but we don’t like the Terriers against the Razorbacks.