March Madness game times and locations Thursday

Here are the teams, times and locations for Thursday’s NCAA Basketball Tournament.

All times Eastern Standard. 

(10) Oklahoma vs. (7) Rhode Island
12:15 p.m. in Pittsburgh, PA

(14) Wright State vs. (3) Tennessee
12:40 p.m. in Dallas, TX

(13) UNCG vs. (4) Gonzaga
1:30 p.m. in Boise, ID

(16) Penn vs. (1) Kansas
2 p.m. in Wichita, KS

(15) Iona vs. (2) Duke
2:45 p.m. in Pittsburgh, PA

(11) Loyola-Chicago vs. (6) Miami (Fla.)
3:10 p.m. in Dallas, TX

(12) South Dakota State vs. (5) Ohio State
4 p.m. in Boise, ID

(9) NC State vs. (8) Seton Hall
4:30 p.m. in Wichita, KS

(16) LIU-Brooklyn/Radford vs. (1) Villanova
6:50 p.m. in Pittsburgh, PA

(12) Davidson vs. (5) Kentucky
7:10 p.m. in Boise, ID

(11) San Diego State vs. (6) Houston
7:20 p.m. in Wichita, KS

(14) Stephen F. Austin vs. (3) Texas Tech
7:27 p.m. in Dallas, TX

(9) Alabama vs. (8) Virginia Tech
9:20 p.m. in Pittsburgh, PA

(13) Buffalo vs. (4) Arizona
9:40 p.m. in Boise, ID

(14) Montana vs. (3) Michigan
9:50 p.m. in Wichita, KS

(11) St. Bonaventure/UCLA vs. (6) Florida
9:57 p.m. in Dallas, TX

 

The Real Champions Classic

Each year, ESPN’s Champions Classic is promoted as the real tip-off to the college basketball season.  It always features a rotation of match-ups among these powerhouses:  Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State and Duke.

There are also reports that the Champions Classic may literally kick-off the NCAA season next year, with no games tipping off before it.  This year, it featured a sloppy matchup of Kansas versus Kentucky (Jayhawks win 65-61) and a Duke victory over Michigan State that left the viewer asking, “was this really a matchup of number 1 and number 2?”

However, tonight when Florida plays Duke and Michigan State plays North Carolina, it will feel like the Champions Classic that would have been if the planners had the ability to pair the nation’s best four teams.

Kansas’s roster is thinner than recent years. Kentucky’s is even more immature than recent years.  Meanwhile, top 10 ranked teams like (2) Arizona is struggling (losing three consecutive games) and (6) Wichita State is without its primary scoring wing, Markis McDuffie.  Swapping-in defending champion UNC with an incumbent veteran roster of Gators would be the ideal substitute for a Champions Classic.

Luckily, for college basketball fans, they’ll get that final four after a full slate of football Sunday.  It’s the semifinals of the PK80 Invitational!

(1) Duke versus (7) Florida
TIP OFF 10:30 EST 

Let’s start with Florida.  The gators are returning an experienced team, highlighted by its gritty backcourt of KeVaughn Allen and Chris Chiozza.  Add-in Russian-born guard Egor Koulechov, Kevarrius Hayes, and a load of talented underclassmen, and you have a national contender.  The Florida Gators already accomplished a great resume-builder during this tournament.  They beat the defacto hometown team, the Gonzaga Bulldogs (games in Portland).  Meanwhile, Duke had an impressive win itself.  They came storming back in the final stanzas against a Texas Longhorns team that looked like it could bring Havoc to teams down the line.  It’s Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski’s youngest starting roster since 1982-83.  The Blue Devils start senior Grayson Allen with 4 freshmen, headlined by forward Marvin Bagley III.

(4) Michigan State versus (9) North Carolina
TIP OFF 8:30 EST 

UNC is somehow overlooked at number 9.  Yes, they have lost Justin Jackson and Tony Bradley to the NBA draft.  However, they return importance piece of last year’s championship team.  They include Joel Berry II, Luke Maye, Kenny Williams and Theo Pinson.  Michigan State has the next coming of Vince Carter in Miles Bridges, along with a huge cast of sophomores who can grow into something special.

 

 

March Madness Longshots Worth a Look

Click here for an A-Z Breakdown of all NCAA Tournament teams.  

And it begins.

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The pilgramage of college basketball fanatics to Sin City is on.

There is only one guarantee:  Madness will happen.  To capitalize on it is the challenge.

At first glance, some deserving teams are being shown no love from the sports books across the desert.  Dayton, for example, has had its hiccups late in the season.  However, 100-to-1 odds in such a wide-open season seems too generous.

In five short weeks, Oregon has gone from unranked to a one seed.  Between Bill Walton’s drumming of the glockenspiel and the West Coast time zone, the seriousness of the Ducks was drowned out to a national audience.  Now they’re 15/1 to win the entire thing.  Most books have them as the 6th favorite in line to win a national championship.

But we remember the glockenspiel.  We remember watching this team and hearing about their deficiencies — ranked outside the top 5o in effective defense, a point guard you cannot name, and a wildly athletic yet still raw and super thin (6-10, 190 lbs) center in Chris Boucher.

What we’re saying is that Saint Joseph’s at 200/1 to win a championship, as is Cincinatti at 100/1, because those teams look a lot like Oregon.  Whatever team wins the 8-9 matchup will likely take on the ducks.  The Cincy Bearcats especially resemble the Ducks, as they appear to have four or five small forwards who get playing time.  For Saint Joe’s we have a whole lot more to tell you about star De’andre Bembry.  Click here. 

If Oregon plays anything like the glockenspiel game, you guys will be in business with those odds.

Some other odds that caught our attention was Providence at 200/1 with one of America’s best players, Wichita State at 75/1 with their experience, and Stephen F. Austin for an absolute haymaker for 500/1.  If the Lumberjacks get past West Virginia, they could grab momentum in a sweet spot of the bracket.  Plus, this system at Stephen F. performed well against so-called “Havoc” two years ago as they beat VCU.  West Virginia’s press shouldn’t be a knockout punch.

We’d love to hear from you.  Follow @CBBEyeTest on Twitter.  

 

 

Sons of NBA players in the 2016 NCAA Basketball Tournament

There are 13 sons of NBA players in this years NCAA Basketball Tournament, by our count.

Here’s a chart of the second generation players across college basketball.
Son Current team NBA dad NBA team of note
Gary Payton, Jr. Oregon State Gary Payton Seattle Supersonics
Domantas Sabonis Gonzaga Arvydas Sabonis Portland Trailblazers
Jalen Brunson Villanova Rick Brunson Toronto Raptors
Sam Cassell Jr. UCONN Sam Cassell Houston Rockets
Isaiah Wilkins Virginia Dominique Wilkins (stepfather) Atlanta Hawks
Elgin Cook Oregon Alvin Robertson San Antonio Spurs
Justin Robinson Duke David Robinson San Antonio Spurs
Wyatt Lohaus Northern Iowa Brad Lohaus Milwaukee Bucks
Bryce Alford UCLA Steve Alford Dallas Mavericks
A.J. English III Iona A.J. English II Denver Nuggets
A.J. Davis UCF Antonio Davis Indiana Pacers
Trey Mourning Georgetown Alonzo Mourning Miami Heat
Aubrey Dawkins Michigan Johnny Dawkins Philadelphia 76ers
Kameron Rooks California Sean Rooks LA Clippers
Brandan Stith Old Dominion Bryant Stith Denver Nuggets
Nick Kerr California Steve Kerr Chicago Bulls
Lasani Johnson Stephen F. Austin Larry Johnson Charlotte Hornets
Avery Johnson Jr. Alabama Avery Johnson San Antonio Spurs