NCAA tournament viewing guide: What, when and where to watch Day 2
The first day of Madness is in the books, and surely some brackets are already in pieces, but Friday has plenty of matchups that shouldn't disappoint. Below is a viewing guide for each of the Day 2's 16 games.
(All times Eastern).
12:15 p.m., CBS
Midwest Regional: No. 7 Michigan vs. No. 10 Oklahoma State
Michigan comes into the tournament with tremendous momentum, having beaten Purdue and Wisconsin en route to the Big Ten tournament title. And don't discount the sentimental wave the Wolverines are riding—when flying to D.C. for the tournament, their plane had an accident on the runway, forcing Michigan to wear its practice uniforms against Illinois. Derrick Walton is averaging 20 points and 9.2 rebounds over the last five games, and Michigan is a trendy dark horse. But don't count out Oklahoma State—the Cowboys shot over 40% from three for the season, and they have the nation's best adjusted offensive rating, per kenpom.com.
12:40 p.m., truTV
East Regional: No. 3 Baylor vs. No. 14 New Mexico State
Baylor is led by Johnathan Motley, a 6'10'' double-double machine who could be a first-round pick should he declare for the NBA draft. The Bears were a top-10 team for the majority of the year and have a top-15 defense in most advanced metrics. New Mexico St. is probably the best No. 14 seed, for whatever that's worth, and had a 20-game winning streak during the season. Paul Weir's team has speedy guards, led by senior Ian Baker, but the Aggies haven't played anybody close to Baylor's quality this year—the best team they've faced is Colorado St.
1:30 p.m., TNT
South Regional: No. 8 Arkansas vs. No. 9 Seton Hall
This should be a close one; most sports books have Arkansas as just a 1-point favorite. Arkansas has won 9 of 11 and looked impressive in its run to the SEC tournament final. The Razorbacks have a balanced offensive attack, with four players averaging over 11 points per game, and they've only lost to two teams who aren't in the NCAA tournament. Seton Hall closed the season playing some of its best basketball and nearly knocked off Villanova in the Big East tournament semifinal. When the Pirates need a bucket, they turn to Khadeen Carrington, a gritty junior guard who also might be the team's best perimeter defender.
2 p.m., TBS
Midwest Regional: No. 3 Oregon vs. No. 14 Iona
Oregon won the Pac-12 regular season title and seemed poised to challenge for a No. 1 seed before Chris Boucher tore his ACL in the first half of a win over California. The Ducks still played Arizona tight in the Pac-12 tournament final (eventually falling 83-80), and they can win any game so long as conference player of the year and crunch-time killer Dillon Brooks is suited up. Iona likes to push the tempo by playing four guards, often including Sam Cassell Jr., but the Gaels' biggest offensive threat is big man Jordan Washington, who averages more than 17 points in just more than 21 minutes per game.
2:45 p.m., CBS
Midwest Regional: No. 2 Louisville vs. No. 15 Jacksonville State
Rick Pitino's team is characteristically long, athletic and terrific defensively (seventh in adjusted defensive rating). The Cardinals have flown under the radar and didn't lose to a non-tournament team all year. Sophomore guard Donovan Mitchell can do a bit of everything and could be a first-round pick. Jacksonville State or Jacksonville, Alabama—not Florida—is making its first NCAA tournament appearance in school history. Keep an eye on Jacksonville's Erik Durham—the senior shot 48.4% from three on nearly 5 attempts per game.
3:10 p.m., truTV
East Regional: No. 6 SMU vs. No. 11 USC
These two teams met way back on Nov. 25, and USC won that contest 78-73 on its home floor. But this is a different SMU team—the Mustangs won 17 of 18 games in the American Athletic Conference and have won 16 straight overall. That, and their fourth-best scoring defense, are the reasons why they're ranked 11th in the latest AP poll. SMU is led by Duke transfer and AAC player of the year Semi Ojeleye, whose story is a compelling one. USC overcame a 17-point second-half deficit to beat Providence in its First Four game, which should give Andy Enfield's team some confidence.
4 p.m., TNT
South Regional: No. 1 UNC vs. No. 16 Texas Southern
Some people thought Duke should have been a No. 1 seed over UNC, but Roy Williams's team is back in a familiar position. The Tar Heels have the feel of a tile team: they rank in the top 25 in both offensive and defensive adjusted efficiency, they have the ACC player of the year in the versatile Justin Jackson, and they're hungry to avenge last year's heartbreaking loss in the title game. As far as the matchup goes, this is a terrible one for Texas Southern. The Tigers are 337th in defensive rebounding percentage, and UNC is the best offensive rebounding team in the country. This could get ugly.
4:30 p.m., TBS
Midwest Regional: No. 6 Creighton vs. No. 11 Rhode Island
Creighton reached the finals of the Big East tournament but was outclassed by Villanova. The Blue Jays play quickly—their 14.9 second average offensive possession is ninth in the country. Rhode Island has won eight in a row and hangs on its impressive defensive, particularly on the perimeter. Dan Hurley's team holds opponents to just 29% three-point shooting, second-best in college basketball. It will be interesting to see if Rhode Island continues to play a nine or 10-man rotation, as it did throughout the Atlantic 10 tournament.
6:50 p.m., TNT
Midwest Regional: No. 1 Kansas vs. No. 16 UC Davis
Kansas was on its way to a likely No. 1 overall seed before its stunning defeat to TCU in the Big 12 championship. Still, the Jayhawks have a good chance to win it all with likely-Wooden Award winner Frank Mason III leading the way. UC Davis got past NC Central in its play-in game, but the Aggies have not played anyone ranked inside the top 130 of Kenpom's rankings.
7:10 p.m., CBS
South Regional: No. 7 Dayton vs. No. 10 Wichita State
This matchup of mid-major powerhouses should be one of the better games of the day, as Wichita State is as dangerous a No. 10 seed as you will ever see (kenpom has the Shockers ranked eighth in the country). Wichita State enters as a six-point favorite, but this is a different Shockers team, as Fred Van Vleet and Ron Baker are regrettably out of eligibility. Dayton, on the other hand, is reeling a bit, having lost two in a row coming into the tournament. The Flyers play pesky defense—they're fifth nationally in steals—and it's never prude to count out coach Archie Miller.
7:20 p.m., TBS
East Regional: No. 2 Duke vs. No. 15 Troy
On the strength of its remarkable run to the ACC tournament title, Duke is now the Vegas favorite to win the national championship. The Blue Devils certainly have the talent to do so, and future lottery pick Jason Tatum has emerged as a star just when Duke needs him most—the freshman averaged 22 points and 7.5 rebounds in the ACC tournament. Troy finished sixth in the Sun Belt conference's regular season and don't have a player over 6'6'' that plays more than 15 minutes per game.
7:27 p.m., truTV
South Regional: No. 6 Cincinnati vs. No. 11 Kansas State
Cincinnati gives up just 60.8 points per game, fourth-fewest in the country. Mick Cronin's team only lost to one non-NCAA tournament squad all year, and the Bearcats prefer slow, defensive battles. Sophomore Jacob Evans (13.7 points, 4.1 rebounds) shoots better than 41% from three-point range. Kansas State got past Wake Forest in an unchracteristically high-scoring game for the Wildcats, 92-85. K-State beat Baylor twice and also knocked off West Virginia, so don't be surprised if Bruce Weber's team gives Cincinnati some trouble.
9:20 p.m., TNT
Midwest Regional: No. 8 Miami vs. No. 9 Michigan State
Miami has some really impressive wins on the season, including victories Virginia, Duke and North Carolina, but the Hurricanes have lost three of four coming into the tournament. Michigan State relies on four freshman, one of those being Miles Bridges (16.7 points, 8.3 rebounds), who is one of the most explosive athletes in college basketball. Tom Izzo is known for guiding teams to surprise Final Four appearances, and Michigan State is looking to avenge last year's humiliating defeat to Middle Tennessee State.
9:40 p.m., CBS
South Regional: No. 2 Kentucky vs. No. 15 Northern Kentucky
It's easy to pull for the Northern Kentucky Norse in this in-state matchup of David and Goliath. Kentucky has its usual staple of super freshmen, including Malik Monk (20.4 points, 40% from three), but the Wildcats also have three seniors who play significant minutes. Northern Kentucky's best offensive player is Drew McDonald, and look for him to play with a chip on his shoulder—he's from Cold Spring, Ky.
9:50 p.m., TBS
East Regional: No. 7 South Carolina vs. No. 10 Marquette
This is a clash of style of sorts. South Carolina is third in adjusted defense but 152nd in adjusted offense, the worst mark for any team receiving an at-large bid. On the flip side, Marquette is eighth in adjusted offense and 155th in adjusted defense. Marquette is the best three-point shooting team in the country, while South Carolina is opposing three-point percentage. If Marquette shoots, it well they will be tough to beat, but if they don't, look for Sindarius Thornwell (21.0 points, 7.2 rebounds) and South Carolina to have some success.
9:57 p.m., truTV
South Regional: No. 3 UCLA vs. No. 14 Kent State
UCLA has an electrifying offense that leads the country with 90.4 points per game. His father might have hogged the headlines recently, but freshman Lonzo Ball (14.6 points, 6.1 rebounds, 7.7 assists) led the country in assists and is one of the best players to watch in all of college basketball. Jimmy Hall averages a double-double for Kent State, which is making its first tournament appearance since 2008.
- Alabama Crimson Tide
- Arkansas Razorbacks
- Atlantic 10
- Big Ten
- Chris Boucher
- Dillon Brooks
- Drew McDonald
- Erik Durham
- Florida Gators
- Frank Mason III
- Ian Baker
- Illinois Fighting Illini
- Indiana Hoosiers
- Iona Gaels
- Jacksonville State Gamecocks
- Johnathan Motley
- Kansas Jayhawks
- Kansas State Wildcats
- Kent State Golden Flashes
- Kentucky Wildcats
- Khadeen Carrington
- Lonzo Ball
- Malik Monk
- Michigan State Spartans
- Miles Bridges
- New Mexico State Aggies
- North Carolina Tar Heels
- Northern Kentucky Norse
- Oregon Ducks
- Purdue Boilermakers
- Rhode Island Rams
- Sam Cassell Jr.
- Semi Ojeleye
- Seton Hall Pirates
- Sindarius Thornwell
- SMU Mustangs
- South Carolina Gamecocks
- Texas A&M Aggies
- UCLA Bruins
- Villanova Wildcats
- Wake Forest Demon Deacons
- Wichita State Shockers
- Wisconsin Badgers