Gov. Dayton picks Gophers to win it all in March Madness bracket

- Gov. Mark Dayton thinks the Minnesota Gophers have what it takes to go all the way in this year's NCAA basketball tournament.

The governor has filled out his March Madness bracket, and he has No. 5 seed Minnesota beating No. 2 seed Duke in the title game. 

“I am excited to see our Minnesota Golden Gophers return to the NCAA March Madness Tournament,” Dayton said in a statement. “I have picked them to win and look forward to watching them throughout the tournament.”

Dayton's predicted path to the national championship for the Gophers has them winning against Middle Tennessee State this Thursday, Butler in the round of 32, No. 1 seed North Carolina in the Sweet Sixteen, UCLA in the Elite Eight and No. 1 seed Kansas in the Final Four. 

The governor also picked Big Ten rival Wisconsin, a No. 8 seed,  to lose against Virginia Tech in the first round. 

Dayton has a number of upsets in his bracket, including No. 14 seed FGCU (Florida Gulf Coast University) over No. 3 seed Florida State and No. 11 seed Rhode Island over No. 6 Creighton. 

Dayton is participating in the Minneapolis Final Four Bracket Challenge along other well known Minnesotans like Lynx coach Cheryl Reeves and Vikings COO Kevin Warren. Follow along during the tournament here

The Big Dance starts Thursday. Minnesota and Middle Tennessee are scheduled to tip off on Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. in Milwaukee in the South Region.

READ NEXT: Gophers prepare for Thursday game against Tennessee

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