OPINION: Sunflower staffers predict outcomes for TBT’s Wichita Regional


Brian Hayes

Wichita State forward Rashard Kelly is announced as one of the starting five before the game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Koch Arena.

The Basketball Tournament is nearing tip-off in Wichita.

On July 25, the tournament is bringing back familiar faces from across the country, including notable alumni from Kansas’ Big Three: The University of Kansas, Kansas State, and Wichita State.

On Thursday, WSU’s alumni team, the Aftershocks, will take the floor for its first round match-up with Iowa United — a team made up of Iowa, Iowa State, and Drake alumni. Before action gets started, Sunflower sports staffers Marshall Sunner and Sean Marty made their predictions for the Wichita Regional.

No. 1 Golden Eagles vs. No. 8 Fort Hood Wounded Warriors

Marshall’s pick: Golden Eagles 80, Wounded Warriors 61 

The Golden Eagles will win this game easily. The Marquette alumni team has the talent to win the whole regional, while the Warriors best player, Rashard Odomes, averaged just over six points per game last year at Oklahoma. I expect this game to be a blow out, led by Dwight Buycks, Jamil Wilson, and Andrew Rowsey.

Sean’s pick: Golden Eagles 83, Wounded Warriors 67

No. 2 Aftershocks vs. No. 7 Iowa United

Sean’s pick: Aftershocks 85, Iowa United 81

In what could be the most even match-up of the Wichita Regional, I expect the Aftershocks to take this one on its home floor. With some nerves from the Aftershocks early, I expect Iowa United to build an early lead behind the play of recent Iowa graduate, Peter Jok. Late in the game, the Aftershocks will find its groove and close the gap coming into the Elam Ending. With the likes of Cleanthony Early and Shaq Morris, the Aftershocks will complete the comeback and win a tight one.

Marshall’s pick: Iowa United 79, Aftershocks 74

No. 3 Self Made vs. No. 6 Sideline Cancer

Sean’s pick: Self Made 83, Sideline Cancer 71

In what experts project to be another tight game, I think that Self Made will come out on top. With some team chemistry already existing I expect the likes of Tyshawn Taylor and ten-year NBA veteran Darrell Arthur to dominate against a smaller Sideline Cancer for the majority of the contest. Don’t count out the Sideline Cancer team if they go down early and show some fight throughout the game. In the end, Self Made’s depth with Perry Ellis and Landen Lucas will be too much to overcome.

Marshall’s pick: Self Made 81, Sideline Cancer 78

No. 4 Team Colorado vs. No.5 Purple and Black

Marshall’s pick: Team Colorado 83, Purple and Black 73

In what should be one of the most exciting opening round games, I expect Team Colorado to come out on top. Purple and Black have one volume scorer in Marcus Foster, while many former Colorado Buffaloes can carry the scoring load. Expect TBT veteran Marcus Hall put on a show, after averaging over 28 points per game in the tournament last year, next to former NBA players Chris Copeland and Xavier Silas.

Sean’s pick: Purple and Black 78, Team Colorado 72

Other Regional Predictions–

Most Exciting Game:

Marshall’s pick: Self Made vs. Sideline Cancer

Sean’s pick: Aftershocks vs. Iowa United 

Top Player to Watch For:

Marshall’s pick: Marcus Hall, Team Colorado

Sean’s pick: Dwight Buycks, Golden Eagles 

Regional Champion Prediction:

Marshall’s pick: Team Colorado

Sean’s pick: Golden Eagles