This article is part of our Sweet 16 Preview series.
Site: Atlanta, GA
Cinderella survived and advanced like never before in the South region. None of the top four seeds in the South reached the Sweet 16. The UMBC Retrievers pulled off the greatest upset in the history of the NCAA Tournament, becoming the first 16-seed to defeat a No. 1 seed. The Retrievers defeated Virginia in convincing fashion to boot, clobbering the shell-shocked Cavaliers by 20 points. UMBC could not replicate the magic against Kansas State, though, as the Wildcats stymied the previously unstoppable Retriever offense en route to the Sweet 16.
Meanwhile, the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers were a chic upset pick and lived up to the hype, making the Sweet 16 as a double-digit seed by dispatching of both Miami and Tennessee in dramatic fashion. The Ramblers hit the deciding baskets in each contest with less than four seconds remaining. 98-year-old Sister Jean, the team chaplain for Loyola-Chicago, has become the darling of the big dance this year, watching her Ramblers execute in crunch time in person.
Nevada mounted two epic comebacks for a surprise appearance of their own in the Sweet 16. The Wolf Pack outlasted Texas in OT, then shrugged off a sluggish start to defeat No. 2 Cincinnati, 75-53. Somehow, Nevada is the second-highest seed remaining in this region at No. 7.
After complaining about the draw, coach John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats are the highest remaining seed, and should be favored to reach the Final Four. The Wildcats struggled through the regular