This is what happens every time I get too confident. I go overboard. Start making promises that never materialize. Happened again last weekend.
I was feeling good after that 4-1 stretch on my previous weekend picks, so I threw out the 5-0 possibility last weekend. Didn't happen.
Virginia outplayed Louisville and the Cavs didn't even have Justin Anderson for a stretch in the second half. Should have picked coach Tony Bennett's squad. Then again, Virginia tends to do the opposite of what I predict.
And I had this weird feeling about Kansas-Oklahoma State. I also had Kansas coach Bill Self's shaky record at Gallagher-Iba Arena. I ignored both and picked the Jayhawks. Kudos to Cowboys coach Travis Ford. That was a big win for that program.
Yeah, Iowa beat Maryland, Duke whipped Notre Dame and Villanova knocked off Georgetown (my 69-53 prediction was close to the 69-57 official score), but I should have gone 5-0. Shouldn't have made it complicated.
I won't make it complicated this week.
Last week: 3-2
No. 16 Baylor at No. 8 Kansas, 1 p.m. ET, CBS, Saturday: Kansas escaped, really. On Jan. 7, the Jayhawks left Waco with a 56-55 win over Baylor that demanded some late resilience. But Baylor collected 17 offensive rebounds in that game. The Bears got 13 second-chance points out of that. It was a tight game and the second matchup on Saturday should be a battle, too -- one that's fought in the paint, where Kansas scored 34 of its points in the first matchup. Baylor has the nation's top offensive rebounding rate, but the Jayhawks are shooting 41 percent from the 3-point line and they're not going to lose at the Phog.
Prediction: Kansas 71, Baylor 65
No. 6 Villanova at No. 18 Butler, 6 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network, Saturday: Huge game in the Big East right here. If Butler wins, it will lock into a tie with Villanova. A loss and the Wildcats extend their lead in the Big East standings. In the first game, Villanova coach Jay Wright's squad did a great job of suppressing Roosevelt Jones, who missed 11 of his 15 shots in a 67-55 loss. On top of that, Butler -- which has been a mediocre free throw shooting team -- shot 62 percent from the line that night. Nova and Butler are two of the hottest teams in America right now. Expect a great game in Indianapolis. But if Jones and the Bulldogs struggle on free throws again, it will be a close one. Lucky for Butler, Jones will be a star and the Bulldogs will hit their free throws.
Prediction: Butler 64, Villanova 62
No. 4 Duke at Syracuse, 6 p.m. ET, ESPN, Saturday: This isn't the epic Duke-Syracuse matchup from last year, right? Let's pause for a moment and remember how special those games were. … But this matchup still means something. Coach Jim Boeheim's team won't have a postseason this year due to its NCAA issues and self-imposed staycation from the Big Dance. So the Orange ain't pushing for the bubble anymore, just pride. And that means something in games like this. You think Rakeem Christmas is going out without a fight in this matchup? On paper, Duke wins. Easily. But this is Syracuse-Duke. Syracuse will play its best game of the season. But Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor are tough to deal with. Bottom line is that we'll see another classic matchup between these two schools on Saturday. Get your popcorn ready.
Prediction: Duke 77, Syracuse 76
No. 20 Virginia Commonwealth at George Washington, 2 p.m. ET, ESPN2, Saturday: The Rams need this. The Colonials need this, too. Life was good for VCU before Briante Weber suffered a season-ending injury and Treveon Graham reinjured his ankle. George Washington looked like an NCAA tournament team before this current stretch of three losses in four games. The Colonials haven't scored more than 65 points in nearly a month. VCU coach Shaka Smart needs role players to carry more weight so the Rams can finish strong and stay alive while Graham gets healthy. They've lost three of their last four, too. But JeQuan Lewis is ready to step up again and get VCU out of this rut.
Prediction: VCU 74, George Washington 69
No. 23 Ohio State at Michigan State, noon ET, ESPN, Saturday: D'Angelo Russell is playing like a top-three pick in this summer's NBA draft. And the Buckeyes are the only team in the Big Ten that's comparable to Wisconsin right now. Plus, Marc Loving, the No. 2 scorer on the team, will return from his two-week suspension on Saturday. They'll need him. It's tough to win in East Lansing. But Michigan State has been both inconsistent and ordinary. That's the odd thing. It's rare to see a Tom Izzo-coached team lacking the pizzazz you expect the Spartans to show by mid-February. They scored 54 points in a loss to Illinois last weekend, when a chunk of John Groce's Illini roster was either suspended or injured. That's not good. Saturday's win, however, will be.
Prediction: Michigan State 67, Ohio State 63