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Both Oregon Teams Slated To Win NCAA 1st Rd.

Both Oregon Teams Slated To Win NCAA 1st Rd.
Photo: Oregon Athletics
The first round of the NCAA tournament should be pretty cut and dry. The disparity between the top 16 No. 1 seeds and No. 4 seeds is significant. We don't expect any upsets in the first round there… but since this is the NCAA tournament, teams come out of the woodwork and play out of their minds so anything is possible. 

However, there are some interesting first-round matchups between No. 2 and No. 3 seeds that could go either way.

Coming in at No. 3 on the list is...

No. 24 Oregon vs. No. 34 Memphis

This battle between Oregon and Memphis is on our list of best first-round matches for a couple reasons. One of the main factors is because these two teams would never face each other if it weren't for the NCAA tournament. The only other time that these teams have met was back in 2006, when Oregon won 5-2. 

This year, the Ducks are making their sixth trip to the NCAA tournament in program history. They've only made it past the first round once. Memphis is making its fifth trip to the big tournament and has made it all the way to the round of 16 one time.

Comparing the two teams, Oregon looks like it will win its second meeting with Memphis too. The Ducks beat No. 16 Stanford 4-3 in the regular season this year and came close to defeating two top 10 teams (lost 4-3 to both No. 5 UCLA and No. 8 Cal).

Oregon has sophomore Thomas Laurent to head up its lineup. Laurent is ranked No. 27 on the ITA rankings and earned a spot in the NCAA individual tournament too. Other than that, the Ducks have no ranked players or doubles teams, yet they are still inside the top 25... impressive.

Memphis beat No. 26 Cornell 4-3 and narrowly lost to No. 10 Oklahoma State 4-3 this season, but the Tigers have been struggling recently. They were swept twice in the past couple weeks by No. 22 USF. Event with Memphis' two ranked players (No. 82 Ryan Peniston and No. 98 Andrew Watson) and one ranked doubles team (No. 85 Andrew Watson & Kai Lemke) putting up a fight, Oregon will come out on top.

PREDICTION: Oregon def. Memphis 4-2.

We've also predicted that the Oregon women's team will advance past the first round. Check out our best first-round matchups of the NCAA women's tennis tournament.  

Other matchups on the list:
5) No. 32 Kentucky vs. No. 40 Georgia State
4) No. 22 South Florida vs. No. 35 Duke
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