Cinderella hopes Furman against SDSU
The first eight applications for the Sweet 16 in the NCAA men’s tournament will be blocked on Saturday, while the women’s tournament ends in the first round.
Furman and Princeton took the sports world by storm on Thursday with upsets of No. 4 Virginia and No. 2 Arizona, respectively. Both are in action again. The 13-seeded Paladins started men’s action against No. 5 San Diego State. The 15-seeded Tigers will face Tigers from another strip in No. 7 Missouri at 6:10 p.m. ET (TNT).
On the women’s side, No. 1 seed Indiana was in action after top seeds South Carolina, Virginia Tech and Stanford took care of business on Friday. The Hoosiers kicked off day two of the women’s first round with a 77-47 victory over No. 16 seed Tennessee Tech, who beat Monmouth in a first-four game on Thursday.
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MEN’S TOURNAMENT: Complete scores and calendar
Follow the madness: Latest NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament Results and Schedules
WOMEN’S TOURNAMENT: Complete scores and calendar
Women’s Final: #1 Indiana 77, #16 Tennessee Tech 47
Sydney Parrish led the Hoosiers to a 30-point win over the Golden Eagles with 19 points, eight rebounds and one steal. Indiana had two other double-digit starters: Grace Berger (17 points) and Yarden Garzon (12 points).
But the star of the show was the Hoosiers defense with 11 blocks and seven interceptions in front of a crowd of 14,000 fans at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Indiana. “It’s such an advantage to have a sixth man,” Berger said of the home crowd.
Tennessee Tech was limited to eight points in the fourth quarter. Maaliya Owens scored a team-high 17 points.
San Diego State seeks to stop Furman’s Cinderella run
San Diego State is 20 minutes behind the Sweet 16 as they lead Furman 39-25 at halftime in the second round in the South Region.
The Aztecs took control with an 18-1 run, holding Furman without a basket for over 10 minutes. The Paladins shot 33 percent, including 2 of 11 from 3-point range, in the first half.
Micah Parrish has 14 points off the bench for SDSU, while Furman’s Jalen Slawson has eight points and two rebounds.
Saturday match standings
Saturday’s winners earn a spot in the Sweet 16, and all eight games feature some of the best teams and players in college basketball. Three No. 1 seeds are in action, and the spotlight is on first-team All-Americans Jalen Wilson of Kansas and Alabama forward Brandon Miller, and potentially Houston all-around guard Marcus Sasser.
Here’s the list of Saturday’s eight games ranked by visibility.
- No. 4 Tennessee vs. No. 5 Duke (2:40 p.m. ET)
- No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 8 Maryland (9:40 p.m.)
- No. 7 Missouri vs. No. 15 Princeton (6:10 p.m.)
- Kansas No. 1 vs. Arkansas No. 8 (5:15 p.m.)
- No. 1 Houston vs. No. 9 Auburn (7:10 p.m.)
- No. 2 UCLA vs. No. 7 Northwestern (8:40 p.m.)
- No. 2 Texas vs. No. 10 Penn State (7:45 p.m.)
- No. 5 San Diego State vs. No. 13 Furman (12:10 p.m.)
Bill Self again
Kansas head coach Bill Self will not coach in the team’s second-round game against Arkansas on Saturday, the school announced. Self continues to recover from a heart catheterization, which caused him to miss the Big 12 tournament. Self, 60, attended practice for the Jayhawks on Friday but mostly sat and watched.
Assistant Norm Roberts will once again be Kansas’ interim head coach. He coached the Jayhawks to a 96-68 win over Howard in the first round.
The defending national champions will face the Razorbacks at 5:15 p.m. at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa.
Did this really happen?!?!
In case you missed it Friday night (although we don’t know how), Purdue became just the second No. 1 men’s seed to drop to 16 since the group expanded to 64 teams. in 1985, when Fairleigh Dickinson shocked the nation with an upset 63-58.
If there’s a winner besides current players Fairleigh Dickinson and freshman head coach Tobin Anderson — not to mention all the FDU grads and fans — it’s probably Virginia coach Tony. Bennett, who is no longer the only coach to lose to a No. 16 seed. Yeah. Talk about a club you don’t want to join.
But perhaps the biggest winners are college hoops fans. The fact that we have now seen two 16 seeds beat 1 seeds over the past five years is proof that parity continues to grow in men’s college basketball, making the NCAA tournament more unpredictable and ultimately , More fun.
—Lindsay Schnell and Paul Myerberg
The sisters could face off in the second round with wins on Saturday
Lior Garzon’s initial excitement on Sunday’s draft show was about Oklahoma State receiving the No. 8 seed in the NCAA Women’s Tournament against No. 9 Miami (Florida). It took the junior forward less than a minute to realize that the Cowgirls were not only dancing, but heading to Bloomington, Indiana, where his younger sister, Yarden Garzon, is a freshman guard for Indiana, No. 1 seed.
At their respective schools through Ra’anana, Israel, the Garzon sisters never discussed the possibility of reuniting in parenthesis until Sunday, but they knew it could at least be in play. vs. Tennessee Tech at 11:30 a.m. ET, followed by Oklahoma State-Miami at 2 p.m.
Thursday’s meeting at the team hotel marked the first time the sisters have seen each other since Yarden visited Stillwater, Oklahoma during winter break.
“I’m really excited to see her play,” said Lior, who is averaging 11 points and shooting 43% from the bench.
As for the possibility of an Indiana-Oklahoma State second-round matchup — and Lior was quick to point out that they still had to win their first-round matches — it would be the first time the sisters had faced each other since played in a club game shortly before Lior left for the United States.
— Brian Haenchen, Indianapolis star
Princeton party like it’s 1996
Princeton, seeded No. 15, dominated on the inside and threw the South Region into chaos with an upset from Arizona.
Maybe it wasn’t exactly like when the Tigers pulled off a memorable upset from UCLA in 1996, when they were seeded 14th and beat the third-seeded and defending champion Bruins 43- 41. There was more offense and given the frequency of upsets now, it probably didn’t shock as many people. But it’s still a big problem. And it’s only the second tournament win for Princeton since that game. The Tigers beat UNLV in the first round in 1998.
What is a Paladin?
Princeton may have pulled off the biggest upset on Thursday, but 13-seeded Furman’s loss to No. 4 Virginia was a fun start (unless you’re a Cavaliers fan, of course) for the 2023 NCAA Men’s Tournament.
It’s been a long wait for Paladins men’s basketball fans. It had been over 40 years since Furman last played in the tournament and over 45 years since his last win at March Madness.
The American Heritage College dictionary defines a paladin as a “paragon of chivalry” or “a heroic champion”. A paladin was also one of the 12 legendary peers or knightly champions present at the court of Charlemagne, or Charles the Great, in the 8th century.
Alabama’s greatest opponent could be worn out by endless chaos
The sporting director released a statement at halftime. The most scrutinized 20-year-old basketball player failed to take a shot before finally going to the bench to rest from a sore groin. The extra who no one had heard of until Wednesday night threatened to sue The New York Times. And the coach loses his head with every dribble for two consecutive hours of a match he did not come close to losing.
In other words, it was just another day in Alabama basketball.
Houston ruins title hopes by facing Marcus Sasser before he’s ready
It backfired dramatically.
Just five days after Marcus Sasser injured his groin in the semifinals of the American Athletic Conference tournament, he was back in the Cougars’ starting lineup on Thursday night. For a first-round game against a No. 16 team.
In a surprise to hardly anyone, Sasser didn’t even make it to halftime. Now, top-seeded Houston may not qualify for weekend two, let alone the Final Four in their hometown.
USA TODAY Sports Final Coaches Poll
Houston entered the NCAA Tournament ranked No. 1 in USA TODAY Sports’ coaches poll, despite losing in the American Athletic Conference championship game just before the brackets were unveiled on Sunday.
The Cougars, who were without leading scorer Marcus Sasser in the loss to Memphis, retained 21 of 32 No. 1 votes to stave off second-ranked Alabama. The Crimson Tide received eight firsts after winning the SEC title in impressive fashion on Sunday.
Houston handled Northern Kentucky in their opening round game, while Alabama routed Texas A&M Corpus Christi in their tournament opener. The Cougars take on No. 9 seed Auburn on Saturday, while the Crimson Tide take on 8-seeded Maryland.