Reseeding the 2023 males’s March Madness spherical of 32

Well, our annual custom of reseeding the sector continues. This effort is each beloved and resented by fan bases across the nation. But we’ll proceed to do our greatest both manner.

There are, per the norm, few main adjustments for many groups at this level. But some motion is critical. Thanks, Princeton, Fairleigh Dickinson and Furman. Other seeds which may have appeared safe now warrant further scrutiny based mostly on what we have witnessed in latest days.

Yes, Houston’s Jamal Shead (knee) and Marcus Sasser (groin) are each anticipated to play within the second spherical. But Sasser hasn’t completed a recreation in per week, and Kelvin Sampson mentioned his whole workforce wants relaxation proper now. If we won’t affirm Sasser can provide one hundred pc for the Cougars, it is troublesome to name this the identical Houston workforce.

And our apologies to the Cinderellas. The large wins are sometimes opposite to their respective our bodies of labor — FDU has losses to Hartford and Sacred Heart this season — not an indication that they had been underrated getting into the NCAA event.

It’s not an actual science. It’s simply an try and make sense of the chaos we have witnessed over the previous 24 hours.

Here is our reseeding of the second-round groups.

Jump to:
1-seeds | 2-seeds | 3-seeds | 4-seeds | 5-seeds| 6-seed | 7-seeds | 8-seeds


1-seeds

Alabama Crimson Tide
Original seed:
No. 1 general (South)
First-round outcome: 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 present 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 Player of the Year Brandon Miller failing to attain and enjoying simply 19 minutes on account of a groin harm. If this turns into an ongoing concern, Alabama may not attain its ceiling. But if Miller is sweet to go, there’s an opportunity an Alabama workforce that scored 132 factors per 100 possessions with out his contribution might attain the Final Four with restricted opposition.

Up subsequent: vs. Maryland (Saturday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)

Kansas Jayhawks
Original seed: No. 1 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated Howard (No. 16), 96-68 (Thursday)

Bill Self missed his fourth consecutive recreation on Thursday; he additionally missed your entire Big 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, though the Bison had related on greater than 50% of their pictures early within the first half. It’s unclear when Self will return, though he informed CBS he might come again for the Jayhawks’ subsequent recreation.

Whether the pinnacle coach is current on the sidelines or not, this can be 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 in opposition to Howard, whereas connecting on 57% of its pictures 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)

Houston Cougars
Original seed:
No. 1 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: 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. But he performed simply 14 minutes earlier than reaggravating the harm and lacking the remainder of the sport. The harm has now impacted Sasser for 3 consecutive video games over a six-day span. That issues.

There are important, trackable variations within the Cougars with and with out Sasser this season. Here’s a big 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 in opposition to 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 great workforce. But Sasser makes them nice.

Up subsequent: vs. Auburn (Saturday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)

UCLA Bruins
Original seed:
No. 2 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated UNC Asheville (No. 15), 86-53 (Thursday)

Mick Cronin has needed to coach by way of accidents in previous years.

During the 2020-21 season that ended with a Final Four run, Johnny Juzang missed 5 video games on account of harm. Last 12 months, Jaime Jaquez Jr., who scored 17 factors Thursday, had varied accidents, too.

This season’s accidents — Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year Jaylen Clark suffered a season-ending Achilles harm within the league event semifinal whereas Adem Bona has missed the previous two video games on account 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 function gamers (freshman Amari Bailey had 17 factors), UCLA stays a Final Four contender. Clearly.

Up subsequent: vs. Northwestern (Saturday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)


2-seeds

Texas Longhorns
Original seed:
No. 2 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: 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 recreation because the performing head coach. He would end the season in the identical function after the college fired Chris Beard following home violence allegations. During his interim function, Texas is 19-7, after ending second behind Kansas within the Big 12 title race and capturing the Big 12 event title — with a win over the Jayhawks.

He has put himself within the working to land the everlasting function for a Texas workforce that gained its fifth consecutive recreation — a run that options two wins over Kansas and a victory over TCU — within the opening spherical on Thursday. Marcus Carr scored no less than 17 factors for the sixteenth time this season. Entering 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
Original seed:
No. 2 (East)
First-round outcome: Defeated Vermont (No. 15), 78-61 (Friday)

A workforce’s Final Four potential usually is dependent upon its capacity to climate adversity throughout essentially the most essential chapter of the season. With Tyler Kolek, the all-Big East first-teamer, affected by a thumb harm — he was 3-for-11 with eight factors — and in foul bother, Shaka Smart turned to different gamers, comparable to Oso Ighodaro (14 factors), within the win over Vermont Friday.

Smart gained his first NCAA event recreation since 2013, when he was head coach at VCU. And it was the Big East regular-season and event champion’s tenth consecutive victory. That’s spectacular.

Even extra spectacular? This was Marquette’s 14th win by no less than 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)

Baylor Bears
Original seed:
No. 3 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated UC Santa Barbara (No. 14), 74-56 (Friday)

The greatest query about Scott Drew’s capacity to guide this workforce to the Final Four, two years after the Bears gained the college’s first nationwide title, has been its defensive challenges (97th in adjusted defensive effectivity on KenPom).

The normal premise has been true for greater than 20 years: Teams that are not elite on protection do not win nationwide titles. Although the Bears secured the first-round win on Friday, UCSB registered a 58% clip contained in the arc in opposition to them.

The counter, nonetheless, was that Adam Flagler (18 factors) & Co. related on 69% of their pictures contained in the arc. That’s how this Baylor workforce will both thrive or sink on this NCAA event. Yes, the protection is an actual concern, however that is additionally considered one of America’s greatest offensive items (second in adjusted offensive effectivity on KenPom). Is that sufficient to achieve the second weekend? We’ll see.

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Up subsequent: vs. Creighton (Sunday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)

Kansas State Wildcats
Original seed:
No. 3 (East)
First-round outcome: 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 guide this workforce, Kansas State did not have plenty of bother within the first spherical in opposition to Montana State.

Per ESPN Stats & Information, 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 pictures contained in the arc.

Up subsequent: vs. Kentucky (Sunday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)


3-seeds

Duke Blue Devils
Original seed:
No. 5 (East)
First-round outcome: Defeated Oral Roberts (No. 12), 74-51 (Thursday)

Forget 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 taking pictures — the Blue Devils have now gained 10 in a row. Six of these victories had been double-digit beatdowns.

You can discuss in regards to 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 elements.

The actual 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 most effective of them? That will not be enjoyable for anyone.

Up subsequent: vs. Tennessee (Saturday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)

Gonzaga Bulldogs
Original seed:
No. 3 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated Grand Canyon (No. 14), 82-70 (Friday)

Since the 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. That means for greater than twenty years, with varied groups and gamers, Few has discovered a strategy to produce considered one of school basketball’s greatest offensive items annually.

This season might need challenged the notion greater than these up to now. There was confusion and instability in his backcourt early on. In November and December, Gonzaga seemed like a workforce which may not hit that subsequent gear.

Fools. All of us. In 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 pictures contained in the arc and 46% of its 3-point makes an attempt. And should you test KenPom, you may see a well-recognized mark. Gonzaga has the No. 1 offense in America.

Up subsequent: vs. TCU (Sunday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)

Xavier Musketeers
Original seed:
No. 3 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: 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 usually 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)

UConn Huskies
Original seed:
No. 4 (West)
First-round outcome: 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. In the second half, the Huskies outscored the Gaels — ranked first within the MAAC in offensive effectivity — 50-24. That’s 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. And they’ve wings who can hit large pictures. 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 may compete with any workforce within the subject.

Up subsequent: vs. Saint Mary’s (Sunday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)


4-seeds

Creighton Bluejays
Original seed:
No. 6 (South)
First-round outcome: 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 Big 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. In the first-round win over NC State Friday, the Bluejays had been good on protection (NC State related on simply 42% of its pictures contained in the arc) and adopted Ryan Kalkbrenner (31 factors) for a stable offensive effort, too.

This seems to be extra just like the Creighton workforce pollsters assumed they’d see once they picked the Bluejays to win the Big East.

Up subsequent: vs. Baylor (Sunday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)

Tennessee Volunteers
Original seed:
No. 4 (East)
First-round outcome: Defeated (No. 13), 58-55 (Thursday)

The Vols almost squandered a large lead on Thursday. With 12:02 to play within the recreation, Tennessee took a 48-30 benefit on a Josiah-Jordan James soar shot. From there, one of many high three defensive groups in America gave up a 25-10 run that put Louisiana inside hanging distance within the remaining minutes of the sport.

Yes, the Vols superior. But the win highlighted troubling developments for them. In 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 in opposition to Louisiana, which triggered that rally by the Ragin’ Cajuns. It’s one thing to look at going ahead after Thursday’s shut name.

Up subsequent: vs. Duke (Saturday, 2:40 p.m. ET, CBS)

Indiana Hoosiers
Original seed:
No. 4 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: Defeated Kent State (No. 13), 71-60 (Friday)

There had been stretches this season when Race Thompson could not even get by way of a recreation. He missed time on account of varied accidents, together with a knee harm he suffered in January. And he by no means seemed 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.

Entering the sport, Indiana had made 53% of its pictures contained in the arc this season with Jackson-Davis and Thompson on the ground collectively, per hooplens.com. That dominance continued in opposition to Kent State. It was the primary time two Indiana gamers had scored 20 factors or extra since 2016, per ESPN Stats & Info. The Hoosiers have generated momentum late within the season, and so they could be peaking on the proper time.

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Up subsequent: vs. TCU (Sunday, 8:40 p.m. ET, TNT)

Saint Mary’s Gaels
Original seed:
No. 5 (West)
First-round outcome: 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 in opposition to VCU proved as a lot. Alex Ducas and Mitchell Saxen mixed to attain 34 factors, and the Gaels gained though Aidan Mahaney, the workforce’s No. 2 scorer this season, didn’t register a degree. Bennett will not change who he’s. The Gaels intention to constrict opposing groups’ offensive stream 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)


5-seeds

San Diego State Aztecs
Original seed:
No. 5 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated Charleston (No. 12), 63-57 (Thursday)

SDSU had been an attractive upset choose in its first-round matchup in opposition to 12-seed Charleston. It wasn’t straightforward, 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 recreation since Jan. 31. Ranked top-10 in adjusted defensive effectivity, this can be a workforce that may lock up its opponents and management any recreation.

But its offensive output might develop into a problem. Matt Bradley (17 factors) was the one double-figure scorer in opposition to Charleston. And throughout 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)

Miami Hurricanes
Original seed:
No. 5 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: 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 definitely a distinct workforce when he is accessible. Omier completed with 12 factors and 14 rebounds because the Hurricanes turned a seven-point deficit halfway by way of the second half right into a seven-point victory. Nijel Pack (21 factors) steadied this crew. But 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)

Kentucky Wildcats
Original seed:
No. 6 (East)
First-round outcome: 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 recreation Friday within the closest factor to a must-win he is ever skilled. And Providence, as a model identify, made the Wildcats a simple upset choose. But the Friars, who completed with a 36.2% clip, have not been a great workforce in months. Meanwhile, Kentucky has sufficient depth and expertise to compete with a number of the high groups in America.

None of it was straightforward on the eyes. Oscar Tshiebwe, the reigning Wooden 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 sector. That may not suffice for a visit to the second weekend, but it surely’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
Original seed:
No. 6 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated Arizona State (No. 11), 72-70 (Friday)

Just 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. Midway by way of an NCAA event recreation, he received damage once more. But Miles Jr. (26 factors) performed by way of 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 remaining seconds, Miles discovered JaKobe Coles, who scored on a game-winning floater. Despite the back-and-forth motion in opposition to the Sun Devils, TCU by no means unraveled. The Horned Frogs dedicated simply 5 turnovers within the recreation, too. Their journey will proceed within the second spherical on Sunday.

Up subsequent: vs. Gonzaga (Sunday, 9:40 p.m. ET, TBS)


6-seeds

Michigan State Spartans
Original seed:
No. 7 (East)
First-round outcome: Defeated USC (No. 10), 72-62 (Friday)

Tom Izzo has brazenly admitted that this is not considered one of his most proficient groups. There is not a Draymond Green, a Jaren Jackson Jr. or a Mateen Cleaves on this roster. But by way of sheer grit and hustle, the Spartans had been nonetheless aggressive within the Big Ten. The similar precept fueled Michigan State’s first-round win. Joey Hauser (17 factors, 4-for-6 from the 3-point line) led the best way 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 may face within the subsequent spherical, however they will not get outworked.

Up subsequent: vs. Marquette (Sunday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)

Missouri Tigers
Original seed:
No. 7 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated Utah State (No. 10), 76-65 (Thursday)

With 10:44 to go on Thursday, Dennis Gates referred to 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 plenty of gritty matchups this season, which is why it wasn’t rattled. To advance to the following spherical, nonetheless, the Tigers must be a greater defensive workforce. Utah State was the third workforce in Missouri’s previous 4 matchups to make no less than 66% of its pictures contained in the arc.

Up subsequent: vs. Princeton (Saturday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)

Northwestern Wildcats
Original seed:
No. 7 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated Boise State (No. 10), 75-67 (Thursday)

For 5 lengthy years, Chris Collins didn’t put collectively a successful season. That’s proper. After he’d made historical past by main Northwestern to the NCAA event in 2017, a primary for the college, he adopted up with back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back shedding campaigns. But the Northwestern brass continued to imagine 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 in opposition to BSU) and star Boo Buie (22 factors, 5 rebounds, 5 assists) carried the workforce.

Northwestern’s is not only a enjoyable story. This is an efficient defensive workforce (top-20 in adjusted defensive effectivity) with the facility to place collectively offensive bursts in opposition to 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)

Arkansas Razorbacks
Original seed:
No. 8 (West)
First-round outcome: Defeated Illinois (No. 9), 73-63 (Thursday)

The story of Arkansas this season has largely centered on its ceiling and its struggles to achieve 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 pictures contained in the arc and simply 27% of its 3-point makes an attempt. But 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.

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Up subsequent: vs. Kansas (Saturday, 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS)


7-seeds

Florida Atlantic Owls
Original seed:
No. 9 (East)
First-round outcome: 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. But 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 usually astute 3-point taking pictures workforce (37% this season) completed 8-for-28 in opposition to Memphis. But FAU’s 18 offensive rebounds — a 44% offensive rebounding fee — 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 Sweet 16 on the road.

Up subsequent: vs. Fairleigh Dickinson (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, truTV)

Maryland Terrapins
Original seed:
No. 8 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated West Virginia (No. 9), 67-65 (Thursday)

Most groups encounter hurdles on the highway. But Maryland’s hot-and-cold act, between the Xfinity Center in College Park and in all places else, was troublesome to course of this season. Entering the NCAA event, Maryland had a 3-11 report 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 the beginning of the second half appeared to seal Maryland’s destiny.

But 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 bother, 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)

Auburn Tigers
Original seed:
No. 9 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: Defeated Iowa (No. 8), 83-75 (Thursday)

Where was this Auburn workforce for the previous two months? Entering the NCAA event, Bruce Pearl’s squad had amassed a 4-9 report in its previous 13 video games. It was seen as a workforce that by some means received tossed a lifeboat from the choice committee and doubtless would not final lengthy. But Pearl’s pattern of successful NCAA event video games continued. This is the ninth time in Pearl’s previous 11 NCAA event appearances during which he superior to the second spherical.

So how do you clarify the resurgence? Well, the Tigers have the items to compete with the most effective groups in America. Johni Broome (19 factors, 12 rebounds, 5 blocks) & Co. overwhelmed Iowa with their vitality and protection. But 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 outcome led to its favor.

Up subsequent: vs. Houston (Saturday, 7:10 p.m. ET, TBS)

Penn State Nittany Lions
Original seed:
No. 10 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: Defeated Texas A&M (No. 7), 76-59 (Thursday)

One of essentially the most widespread Selection 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 robust within the Big Ten’s common season and barely earned an invitation. Jalen Pickett did not care in regards to 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. This is an efficient instance of a workforce that didn’t impress for many of the season (14-11, 5-9 in Big Ten play on Feb. 11) however completed robust to enter the NCAA event with bracket-breaking intentions.

Up subsequent: vs. Texas (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, CBS)


8-seeds

Pittsburgh Panthers
Original seed:
No. 11 (Midwest)
First-round outcome: Defeated Iowa State (No. 6), 59-41 (Friday)

Entering the season, Jeff Capel hadn’t been to the NCAA event in his first 4 years at Pitt. In truth, he hadn’t been to the NCAA event as a head coach because the 2008-09 season at Oklahoma. How way back was that? Blake Griffin was a sophomore on that workforce.

But 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 Four, earlier than thumping Iowa State in considered one of its worst video games (34% clip from the sector). Still, Capel’s squad has superior. That’s what issues.

Up subsequent: vs. Xavier (Sunday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)

Furman Paladins
Original seed:
No. 13 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated Virginia (No. 4), 68-67 (Thursday)

Don’t 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 remaining 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 pictures throughout that stretch. And now 6-foot-7 Jalen Slawson, who continued to guide his workforce when high scorer Mike Bothwell fouled out within the second half, may help Furman lengthen this magical story with one other win and this system’s second journey to the Sweet 16. It all appears doable for the Southern Conference’s automated bid.

Up subsequent: vs. San Diego State (Saturday, 12:10 p.m. ET, CBS)

Princeton Tigers
Original seed:
No. 15 (South)
First-round outcome: Defeated Arizona (No. 2), 59-55 (Thursday)

What. On. Earth. Just. Happened! Saint Peter’s, please welcome the most recent member of the “15 Seeds That Destroy Brackets Club.” Princeton simply achieved and shattered desires 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 in opposition to the Pac-12 event champs with 11 minutes to play. Head coach Mitch Henderson was strategic in the best way he slowed the sport down and disrupted the rhythm of Arizona’s high-powered offense. How do you measure this? Well, 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. But the willpower of a Princeton workforce that is sub-100 in adjusted offensive and defensive effectivity on KenPom led to the largest upset we have seen since … final 12 months.

Up subsequent: vs. Missouri (Saturday, 6:10 p.m. ET, TNT)

Fairleigh Dickinson Knights
Original seed:
No. 16 (East)
First-round outcome: Defeated Purdue (No. 1), 63-58 (Friday)

Don’t attempt to determine this out. Don’t seek for something that predicted this. Nothing predicted this. Prior to its 63-58 win over Purdue — simply the second time a 16-seed has gained a recreation in males’s NCAA event historical past — FDU was 298th on KenPom. 298th. This is a workforce that had 12 — 12! — losses to sub-200 KenPom groups. This is a workforce that should not even be within the event.

And then, essentially the most wonderful upset in NCAA historical past occurred. (Sorry, UMBC.) Zach Edey completed 7-for-11 with 21 factors. But Tobin Anderson strategized to restrict the projected Wooden Award winner’s touches by sending each one who 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 can be legends perpetually.

Up subsequent: vs. Florida Atlantic (Sunday, 7:45 p.m. ET, truTV)