Why every Sweet 16 team will (or won't) keep playing

Beilein: 'Why not us?' (0:59)

Michigan head coach John Beilein doesn't see any reason why the Wolverines shouldn't make a trip to the Final Four after beating Louisville. (0:59)

So, your team made it to the Sweet 16. Congrats! But surviving the first weekend of the NCAA tournament doesn't come with a trophy. We've seen enough from each team to know how they win and, well, how they don't.

We're here to give you reason for optimism and a couple words of caution as we look ahead to the tournament's second weekend.

Midwest Region

No. 1 seed Kansas Jayhawks
First round: Defeated UC Davis, 100-62
Second round: Defeated Michigan State, 90-70
Sweet 16 opponent: Purdue

Why they will advance: Frank Mason III is arguably the best point guard in the country, Devonte' Graham has been on fire lately from downtown, and freshman wing Josh Jackson is rapidly becoming a dominant two-way force. It won't hurt, either, that the Jayhawks next will play in Kansas City -- about 45 minutes from Lawrence.

Why they will go home: The Jayhawks are not deep, as only six players logged double-digit minutes in the win over Michigan State. Foul trouble for Mason or Jackson wouldn't be easy for Kansas to overcome against a bruising opponent like Purdue. -- Jake Trotter

No. 3 seed Oregon Ducks
First round: Defeated Iona, 93-77
Second round: Defeated Rhode Island, 75-72
Sweet 16 opponent: Michigan

Why they will advance: This is an explosive bunch with deep-tournament experience -- they made the Elite Eight last March -- and a superstar in Pac-12 Player of the Year Dillon Brooks. Make that two superstars, if Tyler Dorsey continues his magical March run.

Why they will go home: The Ducks survived the first weekend without injured big man Chris Boucher. But his shot-blocking and defense were badly missed against Rhode Island, and the lack of depth in the frontcourt could prove too costly to advance much further. -- Brian Bennett

No. 4 seed Purdue Boilermakers
First round: Defeated Vermont, 80-70
Second round: Defeated Iowa State, 80-76
Sweet 16 opponent: Kansas

Why they will advance: Few teams can handle Purdue's frontcourt, particularly when 7-foot-2 center Isaac Haas is playing well, as he did against Iowa State. Caleb Swanigan, the Big Ten Player of the Year, is a double-double machine.

Why they will go home: Haas and Swanigan need to stay out of foul trouble. A letdown like the one Purdue experienced when it squandered a 19-point lead against Iowa State could come back to haunt the Boilermakers in later rounds. -- Jesse Temple

No. 7 seed Michigan Wolverines
First round: Defeated Oklahoma State, 92-91
Second round: Defeated Louisville, 73-69
Sweet 16 opponent: Oregon

Why they will advance: Michigan boasts the best offense in the Midwest Region and perhaps the greatest offensive potential in the Sweet 16. The Wolverines demonstrated their versatility this week in Indianapolis when they scored 92 points in a win over Oklahoma State and then found a way to beat an elite Louisville squad despite making just six 3-pointers.

Why they will go home: As impressive as Michigan has been on offense, it's fair to wonder if a team that surrendered 91 points to Oklahoma State and allowed a mark of 1.11 points per possession against Louisville (56 percent inside the arc) will fall. If Michigan's offense stalls for a stretch the way it did against the Cardinals, a more balanced opponent could make the Wolverines pay. -- Myron Medcalf

South Region

No. 1 seed North Carolina Tar Heels
First round: Defeated Texas Southern, 103-64
Second round: Defeated Arkansas, 72-65
Sweet 16 opponent: Butler

Why they will advance: North Carolina's players attributed their experience as the reason why they stayed poised when they trailed by five with three minutes to go after blowing a 17-point lead against Arkansas. Their focus on getting back to the title game, where they were runners-up a year ago, can't be discounted.

Why they will go home: When the Tar Heels are kept off the offensive boards, they can be particularly vulnerable. That especially rings true during games, like the Arkansas win, when both Joel Berry II and Justin Jackson are struggling from the field. -- C.L. Brown

No. 2 seed Kentucky Wildcats
First round: Defeated Northern Kentucky, 79-70
Second round: Defeated Wichita State, 65-62
Sweet 16 opponent: UCLA

Why they will advance: Kentucky really struggled in the first half of its win over Wichita State on Sunday, when it connected on just 33 percent of its shots in the first 20 minutes. But the Wildcats can advance in Memphis and beyond because the three future pros who sealed the win for them in the second round -- Bam Adebayo, Malik Monk and De'Aaron Fox -- will create matchup problems for any opponent remaining in the field.

Why they will go home: Monk went 3-for-10 in Sunday's game, although he made all six free throw attempts. The question many had about Kentucky before the NCAA tournament still remains, especially after its struggles against Wichita State: Can Kentucky beat another contender if Monk has another rough game? -- Myron Medcalf

No. 3 seed UCLA Bruins
First round: Defeated Kent State, 97-80
Second round: Defeated Cincinnati, 79-67
Sweet 16 opponent: Kentucky

Why they will advance: Scoring and shooting, plain and simple. The Bruins are among the nation's leaders in both categories, because they can stretch the floor from every position and have a point guard (Lonzo Ball) whoha s been compared to NBA great Jason Kidd. When clicking, they're the closest thing to college basketball's Golden State Warriors.

Why they will go home: Defense and rebounding, plain and simple. UCLA's defense has improved over the course of the season, but it's still liable to give up too many easy buckets. And the Bruins got out-rebounded in the first round by a small Kent State team, giving up 15 boards on the offensive end. -- Brian Bennett

No. 4 seed Butler Bulldogs
First round: Defeated Winthrop, 76-64
Second round: Defeated Middle Tennessee, 74-65
Sweet 16 opponent: North Carolina

Why they will advance: Butler is versatile and balanced, with excellent 3-point shooters and a skilled big man in Andrew Chrabascz. The Bulldogs are capable of beating any team in the country, as evidenced by their two victories over No. 1 overall seed Villanova during the regular season.

Why they will go home: The Bulldogs have made 16 of 34 3-pointers in the tournament (47 percent) but could be in trouble if shots don't fall for lengthy stretches. Butler also can't afford for Chrabascz, who is a matchup nightmare for opponents, to get into foul trouble. Backup center Nate Fowler fouled out against Middle Tennessee in 11 minutes. -- Jesse Temple

West Region

No. 1 seed Gonzaga Bulldogs
First round: Defeated South Dakota State, 66-46
Second round: Defeated Northwestern, 79-73
Sweet 16 opponent: West Virginia

Why they will advance: Przemek Karnowski. There might not be another player in the tournament that matches up one-on-one with Karnowski, and until one shows up, defenses will need to keep an eye out for this 7-foot-1, 300 pound force. Coach Mark Few rested him in the first two rounds (averaged only 18 minutes per game), so he'll be fresh moving forward.

Why they will go home: When it comes down to free throws. The Zags rank 99th nationally in free throw shooting percentage (72.7 percent) and four of their main rotation players shoot worse than 75 percent. If the Zags are put on the charity stripe late, it's far from a done deal. -- Chantel Jennings

No. 2 seed Arizona Wildcats
First round: Defeated North Dakota, 100-82
Second round: Defeated Saint Mary's, 69-60
Sweet 16 opponent: Xavier

Why they will advance: Between 7-footer Lauri Markkanen, stud freshman Rawle Alkins, star player Allonzo Trier, senior leader Kadeem Allen and inside presence Dusan Ristic, the Wildcats have so many different weapons. Take away one, and there are still four other guys who can score in double digits.

Why they will go home: In each of their first two games, Arizona has had slow starts (the Wildcats trailed Saint Mary's by 10 in the first half; spent most of the first half of the North Dakota game with only a single-digit lead). That might work in the first and second round, but it won't fly moving forward. -- Chantel Jennings

No. 4 seed West Virginia Mountaineers
First round: Defeated Bucknell, 86-80
Second round: Defeated Notre Dame, 83-71
Sweet 16 opponent: Gonzaga

Why they will advance: The pressure defense seems a good choice. If West Virginia can defend going forward as it did against Notre Dame, it will be in virtually every game. The Mountaineers are not only unique, they're really good at what they do, and their ability to disrupt teams' rhythms is the ultimate equalizer.

Why they will go home: The Mountaineers' offense was not just good against the Irish, it was consistent. But that hasn't always been the case. West Virginia has had a nasty habit of easing off the gas or losing its way in spurts, and if that happens against the wrong team, it will be curtains. -- Dana O'Neil

No. 11 seed Xavier Musketeers
First round: Defeated Maryland, 76-65
Second round: Defeated Florida State, 91-66
Sweet 16 opponent: Arizona

Why they will advance: The Musketeers have left their six-game losing streak in the rearview mirror and are starting to get comfortable without Edmond Sumner (knee injury) at the point guard spot. Quentin Goodin has stepped up, Sean O'Mara has become a legitimate option down low, and Trevon Bluiett is playing his best basketball of the season right now.

Why they will go home: Xavier can struggle against pressure, as Goodin is a freshman point guard who can be prone to poor decisions. The Musketeers also can get stagnant offensively when their outside shots aren't falling, as they don't have too many players who can create their own shots against a set defense. -- Jeff Borzello

East Region

No. 3 seed Baylor Bears
First round: Defeated New Mexico State, 91-73
Second round: Defeated USC, 82-78
Sweet 16 opponent: South Carolina

Why they will advance: Baylor's rangy zone can be a nightmare for opponents. The Bears, who haven't lost to a non-Big 12 team all season, have also been getting huge scoring performances off the bench lately from Terry Maston and Al Freeman to complement an offensively gifted starting five.

Why they will go home: As good as they can be offensively, the Bears have also been prone to scoring lulls. Superior talent allowed them to overcome such dry spells in their first two tournament games, but that won't be so easy moving forward. -- Jake Trotter

No. 4 seed Florida Gators
First round: Defeated East Tennessee State, 80-65
Second round: Defeated Virginia, 65-39
Sweet 16 opponent: Wisconsin

Why they will advance: Florida is playing defense at a very high level right now, with Kasey Hill and Chris Chiozza creating havoc at the point of attack. Devin Robinson is also starting to be more assertive on the offensive end, which is what the Gators need from him, as it gives them at least four players who can consistently get their own shot.

Why they will go home: Despite the impressive play lately from Robinson and Justin Leon, Florida still misses John Egbunu down low. He was lost for the season with a knee injury in February, and the Gators don't have the size to replace him, which could hurt them against a team with a go-to inside weapon. -- Jeff Borzello

No. 7 seed South Carolina Gamecocks
First round: Defeated Marquette, 93-73
Second round: Defeated Duke, 88-81
Sweet 16 opponent: Baylor

Why they will advance: Coach Frank Martin said he patterned the Gamecocks' defense off of watching Duke play through the years. South Carolina plays defense as well as those vintage Blue Devil teams he observed, ranking fourth in adjusted defense by Ken Pomeroy.

Why they will go home: South Carolina's shooting can be brutal. If Sindarius Thornwell isn't making shots or they're not scoring off turnovers, the Gamecocks can have a hard time scoring. -- C.L. Brown

No. 8 seed Wisconsin Badgers
First round: Defeated Virginia Tech, 84-74
Second round: Defeated Villanova, 65-62
Sweet 16 opponent: Florida

Why they will advance: Experience. Four seniors is a terrific luxury not enjoyed by most NCAA tournament teams, and these four seniors (Bronson Koenig, Nigel Hayes, Vitto Brown and Zak Showalter) not only have game experience, they have NCAA tourney game experience. This is their fourth Sweet 16 rodeo, and they won't be rattled.

Why they will go home: If the Badgers succumb to the pressure defense and continue to turn it over as they did against Villanova -- 14 times in all -- they will find themselves on the wrong end of an outcome. The Badgers were fortunate that their defense and well-timed scoring covered up their ballhandling flaws, but they may not always be so lucky. -- Dana O'Neil