The 2014 NCAA Tournament finally has its Cinderella with the No. 11 seeded Dayton Flyers advancing to the Elite Eight after defeating the No. 10 seeded Stanford Cardinal in the Sweet Sixteen. Dayton has defeated the No. 6 seeded Ohio State Buckeyes and No. 3 seeded Syracuse Orange en route to the Elite Eight and is probably more confident than any other team in the Big Dance as of now.
However, the Flyers have their work cut out for them, because they face the No. 1 overall seed, the Florida Gators, in their Elite Eight match-up.
Florida scrapped past a feisty No. 4 seeded UCLA Bruins squad in the Sweet Sixteen behind the scoring of Michael Frazier II and the clutch shooting of Scottie Wilbekin. The Gators showed a lot of toughness to hold off a late surge by the Bruins and will fully believe that the National Championship is theirs to lose. It will be extremely difficult for any team to stop the Gators with the way that they’ve been playing since their 29 game winning streak began in December.
What to Watch For:
Wilbekin has proven time and time again that he’s one of the top players in college basketball, and he will again against Dayton. The Flyers play as a team, but they don’t really have a payer capable of. The Flyers actually mirror the Gators, but with just less all-around talent. It should be a good game from start to finish, especially between the guards.
Do not be surprised if Dayton gets up on Florida early. The Flyers look like they want to win games more than their opponents, and it shows in their play. They wouldn’t have made it past teams like Ohio State and Syracuse if they were incapable of having success against good teams. However, Florida is too good all-around to lose to a team like Dayton. Expect Frazier and Prather to go off against the Flyers and help lead Florida to a comfortable victory – and a trip to the Final Four.
Florida 72, Dayton 58