Properly, our annual custom of reseeding the sphere continues. This effort is each beloved and resented by fan bases across the nation. However we’ll proceed to do our greatest both approach.
There are, per the norm, few main modifications for many groups at this level. However some motion is critical. Thanks, Princeton, Fairleigh Dickinson and Furman. Different seeds that may have appeared safe now warrant further scrutiny primarily based on what we have witnessed in latest days.
Sure, Houston‘s Jamal Shead (knee) and Marcus Sasser (groin) are each anticipated to play within the second spherical. However Sasser hasn’t completed a sport in per week, and Kelvin Sampson mentioned his whole workforce wants relaxation proper now. If we won’t affirm Sasser may give one hundred pc for the Cougars, it is tough to name this the identical Houston workforce.
And our apologies to the Cinderellas. The massive wins are sometimes opposite to their respective our bodies of labor — FDU has losses to Hartford and Sacred Coronary heart this season — not an indication that they had been underrated getting into the NCAA event.
It isn’t an actual science. It is simply an try and make sense of the chaos we have witnessed over the previous 24 hours.
Right here is our reseeding of the second-round groups.
1-seeds | 2-seeds | 3-seeds | 4-seeds | 5-seeds| 6-seed | 7-seeds | 8-seeds
Alabama Crimson Tide
Authentic seed: No. 1 general (South)
First-round end result: Defeated Texas A&M Corpus Christi (No. 16), 96-75 (Thursday)
The cloud of controversy that surrounds Alabama won’t disappear, whatever the success it experiences. The lopsided 96-75 win over Texas A&M Corpus Christi within the first spherical showcased the ceiling of the Crimson Tide, who had been additionally given the gift of the Arizona Wildcats and Virginia Cavaliers being eradicated from the South area in a pair of upsets.
Alabama rolled into the second spherical regardless of SEC Participant of the Yr Brandon Miller failing to attain and enjoying simply 19 minutes because of a groin harm. If this becomes an ongoing concern, Alabama may not attain its ceiling. But when Miller is nice to go, there’s an opportunity an Alabama workforce that scored 132 factors per 100 possessions with out his contribution may attain the Remaining 4 with restricted opposition.
Up subsequent: vs. Maryland (Saturday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)
Authentic seed: No. 1 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Howard (No. 16), 96-68 (Thursday)
Invoice Self missed his fourth consecutive game on Thursday; he additionally missed the whole Huge 12 event after he was hospitalized and stents had been positioned in his coronary heart for a blocked artery. Kansas nonetheless managed to beat Howard 96-68, regardless that the Bison had related on greater than 50% of their photographs early within the first half. It is unclear when Self will return, though he instructed CBS he may come again for the Jayhawks’ subsequent sport.
Whether or not the top coach is current on the sidelines or not, it is a workforce that has misplaced simply two video games (each to Texas) since Feb. 4. Led by Jalen Wilson’s 20-point effort on Thursday, Kansas scored 126 factors per 100 possessions towards Howard, whereas connecting on 57% of its photographs contained in the arc and 41% of its 3-point makes an attempt. Kansas is clearly one of many two or three most dominant groups within the subject.
Up subsequent: vs. Arkansas (Saturday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 1 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Northern Kentucky (No. 16), 63-52 (Thursday)
Marcus Sasser, who suffered a groin harm within the AAC event semifinals, tried to assist his workforce within the opening spherical on Thursday. However he performed simply 14 minutes earlier than reaggravating the harm and lacking the remainder of the sport. The harm has now impacted Sasser for three consecutive games over a six-day span. That issues.
There are vital, trackable variations within the Cougars with and with out Sasser this season. Here is a major one: This Houston workforce has made 36.4% of its 3-pointers with Sasser on the ground, and simply 28% with out him, per hooplens.com. The Cougars, who had been 4-for-16 from 3 towards Northern Kentucky, simply aren’t the identical workforce with out a wholesome Sasser. Plus, Kelvin Sampson mentioned Jamal Shead (10.4 PPG) is coping with a knee harm. The Cougars are nonetheless a superb workforce. However Sasser makes them nice.
Up subsequent: vs. Auburn (Saturday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)
Authentic seed: No. 2 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated UNC Asheville (No. 15), 86-53 (Thursday)
Mick Cronin has needed to coach via accidents in previous years.
In the course of the 2020-21 season that ended with a Remaining 4 run, Johnny Juzang missed 5 video games because of harm. Final 12 months, Jaime Jaquez Jr., who scored 17 factors Thursday, had varied accidents, too.
This season’s accidents — Pac-12 Defensive Participant of the Yr Jaylen Clark suffered a season-ending Achilles harm within the league event semifinal whereas Adem Bona has missed the previous two video games because of a shoulder harm — did not cease UCLA from placing collectively one of many first spherical’s most dominant efforts: a 33-point win over a UNC Asheville workforce that had been 18-1 in its earlier 19 video games. With Jaquez, the regular management of Tyger Campbell (10 assists, two turnovers) and key position gamers (freshman Amari Bailey had 17 factors), UCLA stays a Remaining 4 contender. Clearly.
Up subsequent: vs. Northwestern (Saturday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)
Authentic seed: No. 2 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Colgate (No. 15), 81-61 (Thursday)
On Dec. 12, Rodney Terry led Texas to an 87-81 win over Rice in additional time. It was his first sport because the appearing head coach. He would end the season in the identical position after the school fired Chris Beard following domestic violence allegations. Throughout his interim position, Texas is 19-7, after ending second behind Kansas within the Huge 12 title race and capturing the Huge 12 event title — with a win over the Jayhawks.
He has put himself within the operating to land the everlasting position for a Texas workforce that gained its fifth consecutive sport — a run that options two wins over Kansas and a victory over TCU — within the opening spherical on Thursday. Marcus Carr scored at the least 17 factors for the sixteenth time this season. Getting into the second spherical, Texas has gained its previous 5 video games by a median of 15.2 PPG.
Up subsequent: vs. Penn State (Saturday, 7:45 p.m. ET, CBS)
Marquette Golden Eagles
Authentic seed: No. 2 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Vermont (No. 15), 78-61 (Friday)
A workforce’s Remaining 4 potential typically relies on its means to climate adversity throughout essentially the most essential chapter of the season. With Tyler Kolek, the all-Huge East first-teamer, affected by a thumb harm — he was 3-for-11 with eight factors — and in foul hassle, Shaka Sensible turned to different gamers, corresponding to Oso Ighodaro (14 factors), within the win over Vermont Friday.
Sensible gained his first NCAA event sport since 2013, when he was head coach at VCU. And it was the Huge East regular-season and event champion’s tenth consecutive victory. That is spectacular.
Much more spectacular? This was Marquette’s 14th win by at the least 14 factors this season. Friday’s win proved this group can nonetheless steamroll a workforce even when its high participant struggles.
Up subsequent: vs. Michigan State (Sunday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 3 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated UC Santa Barbara (No. 14), 74-56 (Friday)
The most important query about Scott Drew’s means to steer this workforce to the Remaining 4, two years after the Bears gained the varsity’s first nationwide title, has been its defensive challenges (97th in adjusted defensive effectivity on KenPom).
The overall premise has been true for greater than 20 years: Groups that are not elite on protection do not win nationwide titles. Though the Bears secured the first-round win on Friday, UCSB registered a 58% clip contained in the arc towards them.
The counter, nonetheless, was that Adam Flagler (18 factors) & Co. related on 69% of their photographs contained in the arc. That is how this Baylor workforce will both thrive or sink on this NCAA event. Sure, the protection is an actual concern, however that is additionally certainly one of America’s finest offensive items (second in adjusted offensive effectivity on KenPom). Is that sufficient to succeed in the second weekend? We’ll see.
Up subsequent: vs. Creighton (Sunday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)
Kansas State Wildcats
Authentic seed: No. 3 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Montana State (No. 14), 77-65 (Friday)
Jerome Tang started his time at Kansas State by internet hosting weekly Sunday dinners at his home. He mentioned he used these moments to carry his workforce collectively. The continuity helped this group beat rival Kansas for the primary time in program historical past after a seven-game shedding streak. It additionally allowed the Wildcats to earn a positive seed within the NCAA event.
With Keyontae Johnson (18 factors) and Markquis Nowell (17 factors, 14 assists) persevering with to steer this workforce, Kansas State did not have a variety of hassle within the first spherical towards Montana State.
Per ESPN Stats & Info, Nowell scored or assisted on 60% of Kansas State’s factors within the win, the primary time KSU has superior to the second spherical since 2018. The Wildcats additionally made 70% of their photographs contained in the arc.
Up subsequent: vs. Kentucky (Sunday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)
Duke Blue Devils
Authentic seed: No. 5 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Oral Roberts (No. 12), 74-51 (Thursday)
Overlook the Duke that wrestled with accidents, a brand new coach and different rising pains earlier this season. After a 74-51 win over Oral Roberts within the first spherical — mid-major star Max Abmas completed with simply 12 factors on 4-for-15 capturing — the Blue Devils have now gained 10 in a row. Six of these victories had been double-digit beatdowns.
You possibly can speak concerning the progress of Kyle Filipowski (9 rebounds, 2 assists, 4 steals in a tough 2-for-7 outing), the management of Jeremy Roach (23 factors) or the maturation of Dereck Lively II (six blocks) as contributing components.
The true story? Duke has been top-10 in adjusted defensive effectivity throughout that 10-game surge, per barttorvik.com. A assured, imposing Duke workforce that is defending with the perfect of them? That will not be enjoyable for anyone.
Up subsequent: vs. Tennessee (Saturday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 3 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Grand Canyon (No. 14), 82-70 (Friday)
For the reason that 1999-2000 season, every of Mark Few’s Gonzaga groups has ended the season with a top-10 rating in adjusted offensive effectivity on KenPom. Which means for greater than twenty years, with varied groups and gamers, Few has discovered a method to produce certainly one of school basketball’s finest offensive items annually.
This season may need challenged the notion greater than these previously. There was confusion and instability in his backcourt early on. In November and December, Gonzaga appeared like a workforce that may not hit that subsequent gear.
Fools. All of us. Within the Bulldogs’ 82-70 win over GCU, Julian Strawther (28 factors) and Drew Timme (21 factors) powered a Gonzaga workforce that made 56% of its photographs contained in the arc and 46% of its 3-point makes an attempt. And in the event you verify KenPom, you will see a well-known mark. Gonzaga has the No. 1 offense in America.
Up subsequent: vs. TCU (Sunday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)
Authentic seed: No. 3 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Kennesaw State (No. 14), 72-67 (Friday)
When Sean Miller arrived for his second stint at Xavier — the place he had his first head teaching job from 2004 to 2009 — he scored a victory that did not present up within the field scores. When the majority of a roster that had gained the NIT final 12 months determined to remain and play for Miller, he prevented the disruption that new coaches typically expertise, particularly within the switch portal period. He additionally added Souley Boum (17 factors) from UTEP.
The depth and expertise has helped this workforce climate the lack of Zach Freemantle to a season-ending harm. Jerome Hunter, Freemantle’s alternative within the beginning lineup, led the Musketeers with 24 factors in Friday’s win over Kennesaw State — Jack Nunge‘s late block saved the sport — and Xavier superior to the second spherical for the primary time since 2018.
Up subsequent: vs. Pitt (Sunday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 4 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Iona (No. 13), 87-63 (Friday)
At halftime, Rick Pitino was smiling whereas being interviewed by a sideline reporter. His Iona workforce was main UConn 39-37. Neither the smile nor the lead lasted. Within the second half, the Huskies outscored the Gaels — ranked first within the MAAC in offensive effectivity — 50-24. That is the swap UConn can hit.
The Huskies are 11-3 of their previous 14 video games, and all three losses had been determined by three factors or fewer. They’re the highest offensive rebounding workforce in America, courtesy of Adama Sanogo, who completed with 28 factors and 13 rebounds in Friday’s win. They usually have wings who can hit large photographs. Jordan Hawkins & Co. helped UConn join on 44% of its 3-point makes an attempt. When Dan Hurley’s squad performs to its potential, it will possibly compete with any workforce within the subject.
Up subsequent: vs. Saint Mary’s (Sunday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)
Authentic seed: No. 6 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated NC State (No. 11), 72-63 (Friday)
The Bluejays have been making an attempt to shake the stench of an early-season funk for weeks. Picked to win the Huge East within the league’s preseason ballot, Greg McDermott’s workforce began 6-0 earlier than a 3-8 stretch appeared to erase each early evaluation. From there, it felt like school basketball moved on and forgot about Creighton.
Per barttorvik.com, nonetheless, Creighton has been a top-15 workforce nationally since that rocky 3-8 chapter led to January. Within the first-round win over NC State Friday, the Bluejays had been good on protection (NC State related on simply 42% of its photographs contained in the arc) and adopted Ryan Kalkbrenner (31 factors) for a stable offensive effort, too.
This appears extra just like the Creighton workforce pollsters assumed they’d see once they picked the Bluejays to win the Huge East.
Up subsequent: vs. Baylor (Sunday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)
Authentic seed: No. 4 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated (No. 13), 58-55 (Thursday)
The Vols almost squandered a large lead on Thursday. With 12:02 to play within the sport, Tennessee took a 48-30 benefit on a Josiah-Jordan James bounce shot. From there, one of many high three defensive groups in America gave up a 25-10 run that put Louisiana inside placing distance within the last minutes of the sport.
Sure, the Vols superior. However the win highlighted troubling traits for them. Within the 4 video games since level guard Zakai Zeigler suffered his season-ending ACL harm, they’ve dedicated turnovers on almost 22% of their offensive possessions. Tennessee completed with 18 turnovers towards Louisiana, which triggered that rally by the Ragin’ Cajuns. It is one thing to look at going ahead after Thursday’s shut name.
Up subsequent: vs. Duke (Saturday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 4 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Kent State (No. 13), 71-60 (Friday)
There have been stretches this season when Race Thompson could not even get via a sport. He missed time because of varied accidents, together with a knee harm he suffered in January. And he by no means appeared one hundred pc even when he did return. On Friday, nonetheless, he was Captain America to Trayce Jackson-Davis‘ Iron Man as the 2 mixed to attain 44 factors and seize 20 rebounds.
Getting into the sport, Indiana had made 53% of its photographs contained in the arc this season with Jackson-Davis and Thompson on the ground collectively, per hooplens.com. That dominance continued towards Kent State. It was the primary time two Indiana gamers had scored 20 factors or extra since 2016, per ESPN Stats & Data. The Hoosiers have generated momentum late within the season, and so they may be peaking on the proper time.
Up subsequent: vs. TCU (Sunday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)
Saint Mary’s Gaels
Authentic seed: No. 5 (West)
First-round end result: VCU (No. 12), 63-51 (Friday)
VCU had gained 9 consecutive video games earlier than it bumped into Saint Mary’s on Friday. The third-ranked offense within the A-10 was held to 51 factors, its lowest tally since a Nov. 20 loss to Memphis, when the Rams scored 47 factors. Randy Bennett’s Gaels are a legit top-10 protection nationally, and their suffocating effort towards VCU proved as a lot. Alex Ducas and Mitchell Saxen mixed to attain 34 factors, and the Gaels gained regardless that Aidan Mahaney, the workforce’s No. 2 scorer this season, did not register a degree. Bennett will not change who he’s. The Gaels goal to constrict opposing groups’ offensive move in a slow-paced affair, and the technique has persistently labored of their favor this season.
Up subsequent: vs. UConn (Sunday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)
San Diego State Aztecs
Authentic seed: No. 5 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated Charleston (No. 12), 63-57 (Thursday)
SDSU had been an attractive upset choose in its first-round matchup towards 12-seed Charleston. It wasn’t simple, however the Aztecs secured their fifth consecutive win, 63-57, and superior to the spherical of 32. Brian Dutcher’s squad has misplaced only one sport since Jan. 31. Ranked top-10 in adjusted defensive effectivity, it is a workforce that may lock up its opponents and management any sport.
However its offensive output may grow to be a problem. Matt Bradley (17 factors) was the one double-figure scorer towards Charleston. And through this five-game successful streak, SDSU has registered greater than 100 factors per 100 possessions (the road of demarcation in offensive output for faculty basketball) simply twice.
Up subsequent: vs. Furman (Saturday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 5 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Drake (No. 12), 63-56 (Friday)
The press launch arrived hours earlier than Miami was set to face Drake: Norchad Omier, the All-ACC third-teamer who suffered an ankle harm within the league event, was accessible to play.
Miami is actually a special workforce when he is accessible. Omier completed with 12 factors and 14 rebounds because the Hurricanes turned a seven-point deficit halfway via the second half right into a seven-point victory. Nijel Pack (21 factors) steadied this crew. However the Canes, first within the ACC this season in offensive effectivity, registered simply 91 factors per 100 possessions. It was a uncommon offensive slip for Jim Larrañaga’s squad.
Up subsequent: vs. Indiana (Sunday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)
Authentic seed: No. 6 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Providence (No. 11), 61-53 (Friday)
Kentucky followers can breathe. For now. After final 12 months’s first-round loss to Saint Peter’s and the 9-16 marketing campaign from the 2020-21 season, John Calipari entered his first-round sport Friday within the closest factor to a must-win he is ever skilled. And Windfall, as a model identify, made the Wildcats a straightforward upset choose. However the Friars, who completed with a 36.2% clip, have not been a superb workforce in months. In the meantime, Kentucky has sufficient depth and expertise to compete with a few of the high groups in America.
None of it was simple on the eyes. Oscar Tshiebwe, the reigning Wood Award winner, completed 4-for-10 with eight factors — however 25 rebounds. Jacob Toppin (18 factors) and Antonio Reeves (22 factors) had sufficient juice to assist Kentucky overcome a 36.5% mark from the sphere. Which may not suffice for a visit to the second weekend, nevertheless it’s sufficient for Kentucky to shake the picture of final 12 months’s upset.
Up subsequent: vs. Kansas State (Sunday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)
TCU Horned Frogs
Authentic seed: No. 6 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Arizona State (No. 11), 72-70 (Friday)
Simply earlier than halftime on Friday, Mike Miles Jr. went down with an harm. He’d already been impacted by a knee harm that interrupted his season. Halfway via an NCAA event sport, he acquired damage once more. However Miles Jr. (26 factors) performed via the ache and led TCU to the second spherical for the second time since 1987. When Arizona State despatched the double-team towards him within the last seconds, Miles discovered JaKobe Coles, who scored on a game-winning floater. Regardless of the back-and-forth motion towards the Solar Devils, TCU by no means unraveled. The Horned Frogs dedicated simply 5 turnovers within the sport, too. Their journey will proceed within the second spherical on Sunday.
Up subsequent: vs. Gonzaga (Sunday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)
Michigan State Spartans
Authentic seed: No. 7 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated USC (No. 10), 72-62 (Friday)
Tom Izzo has overtly admitted that this is not certainly one of his most gifted groups. There is not a Draymond Inexperienced, a Jaren Jackson Jr. or a Mateen Cleaves on this roster. However via sheer grit and hustle, the Spartans had been nonetheless aggressive within the Huge Ten. The identical precept fueled Michigan State’s first-round win. Joey Hauser (17 factors, 4-for-6 from the 3-point line) led the way in which as MSU reached the second spherical underneath Izzo for the nineteenth time in his profession. The Spartans — who personal wins over Kentucky, Indiana and Maryland — cannot shut the expertise hole they could face within the subsequent spherical, however they will not get outworked.
Up subsequent: vs. Marquette (Sunday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 7 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated Utah State (No. 10), 76-65 (Thursday)
With 10:44 to go on Thursday, Dennis Gates known as a timeout after the Aggies took a 49-47 lead on a Dan Akin dunk. The Tigers would not be on the ropes for lengthy. All-SEC first-teamer Kobe Brown and D’Moi Hodge mixed to go on a 20-7 run by themselves after the timeout, giving Missouri management of the sport and the 76-65 win.
A Tigers offense ranked top-10 in offensive effectivity can hit that swap and alter issues in its favor. Missouri has gained a variety of gritty matchups this season, which is why it wasn’t rattled. To advance to the subsequent spherical, nonetheless, the Tigers must be a greater defensive workforce. Utah State was the third workforce in Missouri’s previous 4 matchups to make at the least 66% of its photographs contained in the arc.
Up subsequent: vs. Princeton (Saturday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)
Authentic seed: No. 7 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Boise State (No. 10), 75-67 (Thursday)
For 5 lengthy years, Chris Collins did not put collectively a successful season. That is proper. After he’d made historical past by main Northwestern to the NCAA event in 2017, a primary for the varsity, he adopted up with back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back shedding campaigns. However the Northwestern brass continued to consider in him. And after defeating Boise State within the first spherical in Sacramento, he has now led the Wildcats to their second NCAA event win as a program.
They did it with the traits that helped them beat Indiana (twice) and Purdue this season. They had been cautious ball handlers (simply seven turnovers towards BSU) and star Boo Buie (22 factors, 5 rebounds, 5 assists) carried the workforce.
Northwestern’s is not only a enjoyable story. It is a good defensive workforce (top-20 in adjusted defensive effectivity) with the facility to place collectively offensive bursts towards good groups (56% contained in the arc, 38% from the 3-point line on Thursday).
Up subsequent: vs. UCLA (Saturday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)
Authentic seed: No. 8 (West)
First-round end result: Defeated Illinois (No. 9), 73-63 (Thursday)
The story of Arkansas this season has largely centered on its ceiling and its struggles to succeed in it. Per ESPN’s newest NBA mock draft, each Nick Smith Jr., (No. 7) and Anthony Black (No. 10) are projected lottery picks, whereas Ricky Council IV is a projected second-rounder. Council (18 factors), Black (12 factors) and Smith (6 factors) mixed to attain 36 factors within the 73-63 win over Illinois on Thursday.
It wasn’t all fairly for a workforce that made 40% of its photographs contained in the arc and simply 27% of its 3-point makes an attempt. However these elite athletes can defend once they wish to defend. And that was the lesson right here. Arkansas has been top-30 in adjusted defensive effectivity and top-40 in adjusted offensive effectivity since Feb. 1, per barttorvik.com.
Up subsequent: vs. Kansas (Saturday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)
Florida Atlantic Owls
Authentic seed: No. 9 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Memphis (No. 8), 66-65 (Friday)
With Memphis unraveling due to inner drama and Kendric Davis coping with an ankle harm, the Owls secured the primary NCAA event win at school historical past on Friday. Nick Boyd’s go-ahead shot with seconds on the sport clock sealed the win. However this got here right down to FAU, 32-3 this season, showcasing the great, constant effort it has employed all season. The poise, too.
The Owls are top-40 in adjusted offensive and defensive effectivity this season. A sometimes astute 3-point capturing workforce (37% this season) completed 8-for-28 towards Memphis. However FAU’s 18 offensive rebounds — a 44% offensive rebounding price — secured second-chance alternatives as Memphis wrestled with its personal inner conflicts down the stretch. Now, the Owls (4 of whose gamers scored 10 factors or extra) will face the best Cinderella of all time, Fairleigh Dickinson, with a visit to the Candy 16 on the road.
Up subsequent: vs. Fairleigh Dickinson (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, truTV)
Authentic seed: No. 8 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated West Virginia (No. 9), 67-65 (Thursday)
Most groups encounter hurdles on the street. However Maryland’s hot-and-cold act, between the Xfinity Middle in Faculty Park and all over the place else, was tough to course of this season. Getting into the NCAA event, Maryland had a 3-11 file this season exterior its residence ground. And when West Virginia took a 19-6 lead within the first half on Thursday, it appeared that the turbulence would proceed for the Terps. An early 16-0 run by the Mountaineers at first of the second half appeared to seal Maryland’s destiny.
However Julian Reese — the brother of LSU girls’s basketball star Angel Reese — scored 17 factors and compelled WVU large man Jimmy Bell Jr. into foul hassle, limiting his time on the ground. All of that helped the Terps bounce again and advance.
Up subsequent: vs. Alabama (Saturday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)
Authentic seed: No. 9 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Iowa (No. 8), 83-75 (Thursday)
The place was this Auburn workforce for the previous two months? Getting into the NCAA event, Bruce Pearl’s squad had amassed a 4-9 file in its previous 13 video games. It was seen as a workforce that one way or the other acquired tossed a lifeboat from the choice committee and possibly would not final lengthy. However Pearl’s development of successful NCAA event video games continued. That is the ninth time in Pearl’s previous 11 NCAA event appearances through which he superior to the second spherical.
So how do you clarify the resurgence? Properly, the Tigers have the items to compete with the perfect groups in America. Johni Broome (19 factors, 12 rebounds, 5 blocks) & Co. overwhelmed Iowa with their vitality and protection. However that is additionally an Auburn workforce with six losses determined by three factors or much less — or through additional time. Pearl’s squad has performed in some tight conditions this season. This time, the end result led to its favor.
Up subsequent: vs. Houston (Saturday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)
Penn State Nittany Lions
Authentic seed: No. 10 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Texas A&M (No. 7), 76-59 (Thursday)
Probably the most widespread Choice Sunday reactions centered on a Texas A&M squad that acquired a 7-seed from the choice committee after ending second within the SEC. Penn State had been an afterthought that completed sturdy within the Huge Ten’s common season and barely earned an invitation. Jalen Pickett did not care concerning the dialog. The Penn State star completed with 19 factors, 7 rebounds and eight assists within the 76-59 shutdown of the Aggies. Andrew Funk had a season-high 27 factors for the Nittany Lions, who’re 9-2 of their previous 11 video games — a stretch that features wins over Illinois (twice), Northwestern (twice), Maryland, Indiana and, now, Texas A&M. It is a good instance of a workforce that did not impress for a lot of the season (14-11, 5-9 in Huge Ten play on Feb. 11) however completed sturdy to enter the NCAA event with bracket-breaking intentions.
Up subsequent: vs. Texas (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 11 (Midwest)
First-round end result: Defeated Iowa State (No. 6), 59-41 (Friday)
Getting into the season, Jeff Capel hadn’t been to the NCAA event in his first 4 years at Pitt. The truth is, he hadn’t been to the NCAA event as a head coach for the reason that 2008-09 season at Oklahoma. How way back was that? Blake Griffin was a sophomore on that workforce.
However Capel responded to the stress this season by ending third within the ACC and securing an NCAA event berth. Pitt squeezed by Mississippi State, 60-59, within the First 4, earlier than thumping Iowa State in certainly one of its worst video games (34% clip from the sphere). Nonetheless, Capel’s squad has superior. That is what issues.
Up subsequent: vs. Xavier (Sunday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 13 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated Virginia (No. 4), 68-67 (Thursday)
Do not name Furman’s win a fluke that occurred solely as a result of Kihei Clark threw a misguided cross that was intercepted and subsequently transformed right into a JP Pegues game-winning 3 within the last seconds of the 68-67 win.
Nah, Bob Richey switched his workforce to a zone look because it outscored Virginia, which had a double-digit lead, 30-17 within the final 11 minutes of the sport. The Paladins additionally made 50% of their photographs throughout that stretch. And now 6-foot-7 Jalen Slawson, who continued to steer his workforce when high scorer Mike Bothwell fouled out within the second half, will help Furman lengthen this magical story with one other win and this system’s second journey to the Candy 16. All of it appears potential for the Southern Convention’s computerized bid.
Up subsequent: vs. San Diego State (Saturday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)
Authentic seed: No. 15 (South)
First-round end result: Defeated Arizona (No. 2), 59-55 (Thursday)
What. On. Earth. Simply. Occurred! Saint Peter’s, please welcome the most recent member of the “15 Seeds That Destroy Brackets Membership.” Princeton simply achieved and shattered goals in a 59-55 win over the 2-seed Wildcats. Whoa. Welcome to March.
Tosan Evbuomwan (15 factors, 7 rebounds, 4 assists) led Princeton to the upset after the Tigers had been down by double digits towards the Pac-12 event champs with 11 minutes to play. Head coach Mitch Henderson was strategic in the way in which he slowed the sport down and disrupted the rhythm of Arizona’s high-powered offense. How do you measure this? Properly, Arizona completed 3-for-16 from the 3-point line.
So perhaps it was a chilly evening for a workforce that made 38% of its 3-pointers — a top-20 mark nationally — this season. However the willpower of a Princeton workforce that is sub-100 in adjusted offensive and defensive effectivity on KenPom led to the most important upset we have seen since … final 12 months.
Up subsequent: vs. Missouri (Saturday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)
Fairleigh Dickinson Knights
Authentic seed: No. 16 (East)
First-round end result: Defeated Purdue (No. 1), 63-58 (Friday)
Do not attempt to determine this out. Do not seek for something that predicted this. Nothing predicted this. Previous to its 63-58 win over Purdue — simply the second time a 16-seed has gained a sport in males’s NCAA event historical past — FDU was 298th on KenPom. 298th. It is a workforce that had 12 — 12! — losses to sub-200 KenPom groups. It is a workforce that should not even be within the event.
After which, essentially the most superb upset in NCAA historical past occurred. (Sorry, UMBC.) Zach Edey completed 7-for-11 with 21 factors. However Tobin Anderson strategized to restrict the projected Wood Award winner’s touches by sending each one that had ever attended FDU on the 7-foot-4 star. The remainder of Purdue’s workforce completed 12-for-42. The gamble labored, and now Sean Moore (19 factors) and the Knights shall be legends ceaselessly.
Up subsequent: vs. Florida Atlantic (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, truTV)