March Madness: East Region Cheat Sheet

Thank the heavens – March Madness is back in our lives once again. Let’s break down the East Region.

What This Is: A resource. There are endless ways to study this bracket – and I urge you to read up on team summaries, see recent performance, and study who it is that leads these teams.

Related:

March Madness: West Region Cheat Sheet

March Madness: South Region Cheat Sheet

In general, I tend to gravitate to a few different factors. Teams with a senior-laden roster, teams that have won their conference tournament, teams that shoot the three exceptionally well, or if there is some other type of dynamic talent on the floor, be it a big man or NBA lottery pick.

The below is a compilation of each first round matchup for the East Region and how teams stack up in the metrics that matter most to me. As always, a special shoutout to TeamRankings.com. 

I’m taking a look at how these offenses and defenses rank nationally, and how reputable sites like KenPom and FiveThirtyEight grade out the squads.

This is heavily focused on analytics and statistics – I’ll be avoiding breaking down the lineups, I’m just trying to get a baseline view of these teams.

At the bottom, I’ll give you my picks for the region. I won’t pretend I’m an expert, I’m just looking at the numbers. Let’s begin.

East Region: Rankings

Michigan's Hunter Dickinson is a throwback big with skill – The Athletic

#1 Michigan

20-4

#16 TBD

TBD

Offense

eFG% Rank: 25

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 17

3P% Rank: 12

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 8

Defensive Efficiency: 58

Opp. 3P%: 151

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 2

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 66%

Offense

eFG% Rank:

Offensive Efficiency Rank:

3P% Rank:

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank:

Defensive Efficiency:

Opp. 3P%: 

Overall

KenPom Ranking:

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 

 

#8 LSU

18-9

#9 St. Bonaventure

16-4

Offense

eFG% Rank: 60

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 14

3P% Rank: 107

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 104

Defensive Efficiency: 225

Opp. 3P%: 20

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 29

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 22%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 141

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 53

3P% Rank: 93

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 13

Defensive Efficiency: 17

Opp. 3P%: 32

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 25

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 12%

 

#5 Colorado

22-8

#12 Georgetown

13-12

Offense

eFG% Rank: 82

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 30

3P% Rank: 48

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 64

Defensive Efficiency: 42

Opp. 3P%: 143

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 17

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 37%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 192

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 183

3P% Rank: 52

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 82

Defensive Efficiency: 126

Opp. 3P%: 108

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 55

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 12%

 

#4 Florida St.

16-6

#13 UNC Greensboro

21-8

Offense

eFG% Rank: 32

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 25

3P% Rank: 9

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 33

Defensive Efficiency: 99

Opp. 3P%: 144

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 15

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 47%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 255

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 113

3P% Rank: 311

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 85

Defensive Efficiency: 48

Opp. 3P%: 75

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 100

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 5%

 

#6 BYU

20-6

#11 TBD

TBD

Offense

eFG% Rank: 21

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 40

3P% Rank: 35

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 36

Defensive Efficiency: 61

Opp. 3P%: 100

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 24

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 26%

Offense

eFG% Rank:

Offensive Efficiency Rank:

3P% Rank:

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank:

Defensive Efficiency: 

Opp. 3P%:

Overall

KenPom Ranking:

FiveThirtyEight% S16:

 

#3 Texas

19-7

#14 Abl. Christian

23-4

Offense

eFG% Rank: 58

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 70

3P% Rank: 80

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 39

Defensive Efficiency: 77

Opp. 3P%: 88

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 26

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 49%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 57

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 67

3P% Rank: 21

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 12

Defensive Efficiency: 1

Opp. 3P%: 13

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 86

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 4%

 

#7 UConn

15-7

#10 Maryland

16-13

Offense

eFG% Rank: 195

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 58

3P% Rank: 177

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 28

Defensive Efficiency: 51

Opp. 3P%: 60

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 16

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 22%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 67

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 117

3P% Rank: 113

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 101

Defensive Efficiency: 137

Opp. 3P%: 205

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 31

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 18%

 

#2 Alabama

24-6

#15 Iona

12-5

Offense

eFG% Rank: 105

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 87

3P% Rank: 104

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 10

Defensive Efficiency: 18

Opp. 3P%: 10

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 8

FiveThirtyEight% S16: 60%

Offense

eFG% Rank: 117

Offensive Efficiency Rank: 131

3P% Rank: 89

Defense

Opp. EFG% Rank: 18

Defensive Efficiency: 30

Opp. 3P%: 23

Overall

KenPom Ranking: 181

FiveThirtyEight% S16: <1%

 

East Region: First Round Picks

St. Bonaventure Earns Men's Basketball Regular Season Title, Championship Top Seed - Atlantic 10

#1 Michigan over #16 Mt. St. Mary’s/Texas Southern

#9 St. Bonaventure over #8 LSU

#5 Colorado over #12 Georgetown

#4 Florida St. over #13 UNC Greensboro

#6 BYU over #11 Michigan St./UCLA

#14 Abilene Christian over #3 Texas

#7 UConn over #10 Maryland

#2 Alabama over #15 Iona

While not an upset, per se, I really like how St. Bonaventure matches up with LSU in this one, with one of the best defenses in the nation. They seem to have a balanced offensive attack in a guard-centric system, which is a must for a Cinderella – may just have the Bonnies make a bit of a run because of it.

I will note that College Basketball fans are floored by Michigan State being forced to have a play-in game. They would be the 11 seed against BYU if they win, we will update accordingly when the results come through – but I think I’m in on BYU regardless.

How bout those Abilene Christian defensive numbers?? One of the top defending teams in this tournament, it’s certainly one to keep an eye on. At the very least, consider taking their spread.

UConn’s offensive numbers are pretty rough, but I will give them a benefit of the doubt, knowing their leading scorer James Bouknight is back in the lineup. Top scoring guards on UConn don’t usually perform in March, do they?

NBA scouts share their opinions on UConn's James Bouknight

Second Round

#9 St. Bonaventure over #1 Michigan

#4 Florida St. over #5 Colorado

#6 BYU over #14 Abilene Christian

#7 UConn over #2 Alabama

Sweet Sixteen

#4 Florida St. over #9 St. Bonaventure

#6 BYU over #7 UConn

Elite Eight

#4 Florida St. over #6 BYU

Really drawn to Florida State in this region. Their offense is one of the strongest in the nation, and have enough defensive balance to not lose on that end. I initially really liked Colorado in this region, but their struggles stopping the three would not go over well with the Seminoles 9th ranked 3P%.

We go a bit crazy in this region, just how I like it. Hitching my wagon to BYU off the back of their senior-heavy backcourt and guard Alex Barcello – who has shot nearly 50% from three the last two years.

As I teased above, I’m rolling the dice on the Bonnies taking down Michigan.

And one last note. I’m completely letting a biased take of seeing UConn guards run through the tournament in the past power my UConn upset over Alabama.

So, that’s my East Region – I hope you don’t blindly follow me. What I do hope is that the above metrics consolidated help bring you some familiarity with the teams playing.

For the next few regions, make sure you’re following on Twitter, @griffybets. Missed you March.