5-12 Upsets In NCAA Tournament Ranked In Order Of Likelihood

There are certain things that you can count on each March:

  • Dick Vitale rambling on incessantly without really making a point (OK, that happens in other months, too).
  • People getting hammered on St. Patrick’s Day.
  • And a five seed losing to a twelve.

With that last bullet in mind, I have decided to rank the upset potential among the four 5-12 matchups, starting with the one I think is most likely.  Truth be told, I actually don’t love any of these. (This fits with Jerod’s 5-12 upset picks, which has only one 5-12 upset.)

Related: Upset Picks For The 2012 NCAA Tournament


John Jenkins are the Commodores are looking to carry their SEC Tournament momentum into the NCAA Tournament. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images North America)

1. #5 Wichita State vs. #12 VCU

This is one of the first round games I am looking forward to the most. It’s too bad that the selection committee has a cruel sense of humor, because they set up this early matchup between two of the best “mid-majors” in the field.

Defense will be the name of the game in this one, with both teams ranking in the Top 30 in defensive efficiency. The Rams want to press and push the tempo, but with veteran guards like Toure’ Murry and Joe Ragland, don’t expect Wichita State to get rattled easily.  Still, I think VCU’s “havoc” defense is what ultimately gives them a shot to win this game, because it can serve as the equalizer against Wichita State’s offense, which has been far better than VCU’s this year.

Shaka Smart’s tournament success last season also plays a factor, and his players will be listening intently to his every word in preparation for the game.  The team’s veterans will also carry forward the understanding of what it takes to succeed during March Madness, and that may well put them over the top against what I believe is a better team and arguably the best “mid-major” in this year’s field.

Related: Complete Wichita State-VCU Preview and Prediction

2. #5 Temple vs. #12 California / #12 South Florida

First things first, this is only in play if Cal beats USF, because I still don’t think the Bulls deserve to be in the tournament.

One thing working in Cal’s favor is that Temple doesn’t have a strong low post game, which is key against a California squad that lacks quality depth inside.  If Harper Kamp and David Kravish can at least play Micheal Eric and Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson to a draw, it will come down the backcourt play.

The Owls have a trio of strong guards, which would make for a great matchup with Cal, who boasts an impressive trio of its own in Allen Crabbe, Jorge Gutierrez, and Justin Cobbs.  Those guys have the talent to exploit what at least on paper is a vulnerable Temple defense, and it’s tough to bet against a fierce competitor like Gutierrez, who was named Pac-12 Player of the Year.  Guard play is always critical in March, and even though I picked the Owls to come away with the win, the toughness of Gutierrez could push the Bears over the top.

3. #5 New Mexico vs. #12 Long Beach State

Damn the selection committee for making two of my favorite teams from this season face off in the first round.

The Lobos are one of the top defensive teams in the country, but Long Beach State can put pressure on opposing teams thanks to the play-making of Casper Ware and the interior toughness of T.J. Robinson.  If Larry Anderson is able to return from a knee injury that caused him to miss the Big West Tournament, it gives the 49ers another offensive weapon as well as a player who can impact the game defensively.

Against at least a couple of the other five seeds, I would be inclined to take the 49ers, but injury concerns about Anderson and the stout New Mexico defense have me leaning heavily toward the Lobos.  Still, I’ve seen Casper Ware completely control games in the past, so I refuse to write them off entirely.

Related: Complete New Mexico-Long Beach State Preview and Prediction

4. #5 Vanderbilt vs. #12 Harvard

I am well aware of Vanderbilt’s recent track record in the NCAA Tournament, but instead of coming in carrying the burden of those past failures, the Commodores come in with confidence after beating Kentucky.

Vandy sharpshooter John Jenkins should be able to take advantage of suspect three-point defense from the Crimson.  Jeffery Taylor is a really tough matchup when he’s playing well, and Festus Ezeli is the type of big man the Crimson don’t see a lot of in the Ivy League.

One of Harvard’s strengths on offense is its ability to get to the stripe, but Vanderbilt has one of the lowest opponents’ free throw rates in the country, which makes it even more of an uphill battle for the Crimson.

Related: Complete Vanderbilt-Harvard Preview and Prediction

What do you think?

Which 5-12 matchups do you think will result in upsets? (Choose all that apply)

  • #5 Temple v #12 Cal/South Florida (42%, 454 Votes)
  • #5 New Mexico v #12 Long Beach State (42%, 459 Votes)
  • #5 Vanderbilt v #12 Harvard (15%, 163 Votes)
  • #5 Wichita State v #12 VCU (29%, 318 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,086

Loading ... Loading ...


About Andy Bottoms

While Andy was born and raised in Indiana, he would like to point out that he grew up shooting hoops in his driveway and not against the side of a barn like you see in all the March Madness promos or in the middle of a field like Jimmy Chitwood. Andy ranks among the top bracketologists according to the Bracket Matrix and has provided his projections to Fox Sports for the past three seasons. When not compiling excuses for missing work during the NCAA Tournament, Andy enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters. He is a proud IU graduate and co-hosts The Assembly Call postgame show following every IU game. Twitter: @AndyBottoms


  1. My brother recommended I might like this web site. He was entirely right.

    This post actually made my day. You can not imagine simply how much time I had
    spent for this info! Thanks!

  2. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was curious about your situation; we have created some nice procedures and we are looking to trade techniques
    with other folks, why not shoot me an email if

  3. Pretty section of content. I just stumbled upon your website and in accession capital to assert that I get actually enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I’ll be subscribing to your augment and even I achievement you access consistently fast.

  4. This is really interesting, You’re a very skilled blogger. I have joined your feed and look forward to seeking more of your fantastic post. Also, I have shared your site in my social networks!

  5. Heyy just wanted to give yyou a brief heads up and let you know a few oof the pictures aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why butt I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different web browsers and both show the same outcome.Feel free to surf to my homepage porn

  6. Very good article. I definitely appreciate this site. Keep it up!

  7. Nice weblog here! Additionally your website so much up fast! What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate hyperlink on your host? I desire my website loaded up as quickly as yours lol

  8. Thank you for another informative site. Where else could I get that kind of info written in such an ideal way? I’ve a project that I’m just now working on, and I have been on the look out for such information.

  9. Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you actually know what you are speaking approximately! Bookmarked. Please also discuss with my web site =). We may have a link exchange agreement among us!

  10. I will immediately grasp your rss feed as I can’t find your e-mail subscription link or e-newsletter service. Do you have any? Please allow me recognise in order that I may just subscribe. Thanks.

  11. Thanks for your ideas. One thing I have noticed is banks and financial institutions know the dimensions and spending patterns of consumers and understand that the majority of people max out there their own credit cards around the breaks. They correctly take advantage of this real fact and commence flooding a person’s inbox and also snail-mail box having hundreds of 0 APR card offers immediately after the holiday season ends. Knowing that for anyone who is like 98% of all American public, you’ll hop at the chance to consolidate credit card debt and switch balances to 0 APR credit cards.

  12. My developer is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses. But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on a variety of websites for about a year and am worried about switching to another platform. I have heard fantastic things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can import all my wordpress posts into it? Any help would be really appreciated!

  13. I am in fact thankful to the owner of this site who has shared this great paragraph at at this place.

  14. Join our mailing list to stay updated the latest freelance job opportunities.

  15. Have you ever considered creating an ebook or guest authoring on other blogs? I have a blog centered on the same subjects you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my visitors would appreciate your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an email.

  16. My family always say that I am wasting my time here at web, except I know I am getting experience everyday by reading such pleasant content.

  17. I think the admin of this site is truly working hard in support of his site, for the reason that here every stuff is quality based data.

  18. very nice post, i certainly love this web site, keep on it

  19. Sweet blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News. Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Thanks

  20. Hmm it appears like your site ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to everything. Do you have any tips for beginner blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

  21. With that last bullet in mind, I have decided to rank the upset potential among the four 5-12 matchups,
    judi togel online yang aman dan terpercaya

  22. against Wichita State’s offense, which has been far better than VCU’s this year.
    togel sgp

  23. Keep working ,impressive job!

  24. WLGYPh I think this is a real great blog post. Great.

Speak Your Mind