A one-seed went down, and with it went the hopes of school basketball’s first repeat nationwide champion in 15 years. Two different prime seeds had been pushed to the brink. A stylish Closing 4 choose was bounced by a group many thought didn’t even belong within the discipline. And, after all, a group nicknamed the Peacocks turned simply the third 15-seed ever to win a number of video games in an NCAA match.
Let’s get to it.
March Insanity’ 3 finest video games of Day 3
1. (1) Gonzaga 82, (9) Memphis 78 (West)
You understand how you’ve got sure books that you simply’ll advocate to associates who don’t essentially love studying? Nicely this was the kind of sport that you simply advocate to your folks who don’t essentially love faculty basketball.
A breakneck tempo, future professionals all around the courtroom, a raucous (largely pro-Gonzaga) crowd, the match’s No. 1 general seed being pushed to the brink; This one had about every thing you can ask for from a second spherical sport.
It was clear from the outset that Memphis’ size and athleticism was going to trouble Gonzaga. Simply how a lot so wasn’t totally obvious till the Tigers had been carrying a 10-point benefit with them into the locker room at halftime.
Within the second 20 minutes, Gonzaga did what nice groups do once they’re threatened: They performed their best hits. Mark Few emphasised getting the ball to star huge man Drew Timme extra, and Timme responded by scoring 21 of his game-high 25 factors within the second half. The Bulldogs additionally upped their tempo, getting simple bucket after simple bucket in transition whereas additionally sporting down a Memphis group that very clearly wasn’t as constructed for taking part in one of these sport because the ‘Zags had been.
Thanks largely to some woeful free-throw taking pictures by Gonzaga (13-of-24 on the line after going 16 for 30 within the first spherical towards Georgia State), Memphis by no means totally went away. The Tigers bought inside two on Lester Quinones’ triple with 32 seconds to play, however 4 straight free-throws by Andrew Nembhard — Gonzaga’s lone persistently dependable free-throw shooter — put the sport on ice.
The Zags at the moment are off to the Candy 16 for the seventh consecutive match, the longest lively streak in faculty basketball and tied for the third longest all-time. They’ll get fourth-seeded Arkansas on Thursday.
2. (8) North Carolina 93, (1) Baylor 86 (OT) (East)
The place do you even begin right here?
This sport had Shakespearian ranges of depth, and peeling away all of the layers would take way more time than we’ve got right here. So let’s simply hit 5 main issues it is advisable to find out about one of many wildest second spherical match video games in historical past.
1) North Carolina almost tied the report for the biggest blown lead in NCAA match historical past.
The Tar Heels led Baylor by a whopping 25 factors with simply over 10 minutes to play, then watched as that lead fully evaporated earlier than the regulation clock struck zero. Had UNC not prevailed in time beyond regulation, they might have gone down in historical past alongside Iona as the one groups in March Insanity historical past to lose a sport they as soon as led by 25.
Largest deficits overcome in match historical past:
25-BYU vs. Iona, March 13, 2012
22-Duke vs. Maryland, March 31, 2001
22-Nevada vs. Cincinnati, March 18, 2018
BYU trailed 49-24 with six minutes left within the first half. Baylor trailed by 25 with 10:08 left within the sport.
Get to CBS
— David Worlock (@DavidWorlock) March 19, 2022
2) Brady Manek bought tossed.
North Carolina was up by 25 when Brady Manek was ejected from the sport for throwing an elbow that was deemed a flagrant 2 foul.
You possibly can decide for your self.
Manek was UNC’s main scorer on the time with 26 factors on 8-of-13 taking pictures from the sphere. The Tar Heel unraveling started the second lumberjack-looking stretch 4 hit the showers, as Baylor immediately went on a 20-4 run to get proper again within the sport.
It must be acknowledged that Manek’s flagrant 2 does not imply that he has to sit down out UNC’s Candy 16 sport towards UCLA.
3) It was one of many worst-officiated video games of all-time.
If there’s anybody in your life who rocks Carolina blue, you’re possible sick of listening to about how the refs tried at hand the sport to Baylor within the second half. Whereas the Bears’ livid rally within the sport’s remaining 10 minutes was definitely aided by some seemingly absurd whistles and non-whistles, the stripes additionally made some egregious calls towards Scott Drew’s group close to the tip of regulation and in time beyond regulation as nicely.
There are far too many specifics to get into right here, however it felt like each name that might probably be screwed up by this officiating crew (and even some that felt not possible to screw up) was screwed up by this officiating crew. If any one in all them works one other sport on this match, will probably be a travesty.
4) Scott Drew couldn’t bear to observe the ultimate shot of regulation.
After James Akinjo’s quaint three-point-play tied the rating at 80 with 15 seconds to go, North Carolina’s R.J. Davis had one remaining shot to settle issues in regulation. The shot got here up nicely brief, however Baylor head coach Scott Drew by no means noticed it. He was simply ready to listen to the best sort of roar.
That’s a terrific March Insanity proper there which may have been an all-time March Insanity second had Baylor gone on to prevail in time beyond regulation.
5) Dontrez Kinds’ three modified every thing.
Heading into time beyond regulation, just about each basketball fan on this planet thought North Carolina had blown its shot at advancing to the Candy 16. As a lot momentum as there can probably be was within the nook of Baylor, which had already seemed to be the stronger facet heading into the afternoon.
On the primary possession of the additional interval, freshman guard Dontrez Kinds, who entered the sport averaging simply 1.9 ppg for the season, buried a no hesitation three from the left nook to place the Heels again on prime. Kinds had been simply 2-for-14 from three on the season earlier than the shot.
Whereas R.J. Davis and Armando Bacot made all the mandatory huge performs for the rest of the time beyond regulation, Kinds was the person who was there on the time when UNC was most in want of somebody to step up and re-assert management.
3. (1) Kansas 79, (9) Creighton 72 (Midwest)
For some time, it regarded as if Saturday afternoon’s two standalone video games may give us back-to-back bouncings of No. 1 seeds.
The second would have been much more stunning than the primary, as Creighton could be taking up mighty Kansas with out the companies of start line guard Ryan Nemhard, the Large East Freshman of the Yr, in addition to 7-foot heart Ryan Kalkbrenner. Nemhard was misplaced for the season in late February, whereas Kalkbrenner injured his knee late in time beyond regulation of Creighton’s 72-69 win over San Diego State on Thursday.
Towards all odds, the Bluejays went (almost) blow for blow with Kansas for 40 minutes on Saturday.
The sport’s decisive second got here within the remaining minute. With Creighton in possession of the ball and trailing by one, an errant move by Trey Alexander went off the palms of Alex O’Connell and proper into the bread basket of Kansas star Ochai Agbaji, who took it the opposite method for a simple dunk.
The Bluejays wouldn’t rating on any of their remaining three possessions.
With the win, Kansas tied Kentucky for the all-time lead in each whole wins and 30-win seasons. The Jayhawks can transfer forward of the Wildcats within the former class with a Candy 16 win over Windfall on Friday.
Regardless of being the Midwest Area’s 4-seed, simply 20.8 p.c of the 17.3 million individuals who stuffed out brackets on ESPN.com believed Windfall would play to kind and advance previous the match’s opening weekend.
Not solely are the Friars marching on, however they’re doing so after wins over South Dakota State and Richmond that got here by a mixed 37 factors.
Doing the heaviest lifting in that whole was PC’s 79-51 trouncing of the Spiders on Saturday. Ed Cooley’s group shot over 50 p.c from each behind the three-point line and inside it, had 5 totally different gamers rating in double figures, and restricted Richmond to a dismal 1-of-22 from three.
The 28-point margin of victory was the biggest ever by a Windfall group in an NCAA match sport, and sends the Friars to their first Candy 16 look in 25 years.
The key discuss surrounding Michigan within the days between Choice Sunday and the beginning of first spherical play on Thursday was how a group with a 17-14 general report managed to not simply make the sphere of 68, however keep away from enjoying within the First 4.
It isn’t the most important discuss surrounding the Wolverines anymore.
Michigan trailed by 5 at halftime and for a wholesome chunk of the second half earlier than a decisive 14-5 run spearheaded by Hunter Dickinson and Eli Brooks. Brooks scored 4 factors within the sport’s remaining minute, together with a beautiful operating hook shot simply earlier than the shot clock buzzer that felt like the largest bucket of the sport.
The Wolverines at the moment are headed to the Candy 16 for the fifth-consecutive match, the second-longest lively streak within the nation behind Gonzaga, and tied for the fifth-longest streak ever.
Even though they had been going through a Saint Mary’s group that regarded a lot stronger of their Thursday night time win over Indiana than UCLA did in its slender overcome Akron, the Bruins rolled to a 72-56 victory that by no means actually felt in jeopardy after the closing moments of the primary half.
4 of UCLA’s 5 starters scored in double figures, and the one starter who didn’t hit that mark (Cody Riley), scored 9. The Bruins shot 56.5 p.c from the sphere as a group, and after a little bit of a gradual begin, by no means gave the impression to be actually threatened by one of many higher Saint Mary’s groups ever fielded by longtime head coach Randy Bennett.
Now we get UCLA vs. North Carolina within the NCAA match for simply the third time ever, and the primary time since 1989. The Bruins bettered the Tar Heels within the 1968 nationwide title sport, whereas UNC gained a second spherical sport between the 2 storied packages in ‘89.
On one hand, you just about pulled off the (co-)largest comeback within the historical past of the NCAA match. On the opposite, you dug your self a 25-point gap and would up being the primary No. 1 seed to get bounced.
Florida’s standing as faculty basketball’s most up-to-date back-to-back nationwide champion (2006, 2007) will keep in tact for at the very least one yr.
It feels fallacious to bag on Richmond after a magical two weeks the place the Spiders gained the A-10 match as a 6-seed after which shocked stylish Closing 4 choose Iowa within the first spherical of the Large Dance, however they had been terrible on Saturday.
Richmond went 1-of-22 from three and was inside placing distance of Windfall for all of about 30 seconds. Defensively, the Spiders allowed a lower than stellar taking pictures group to attach on greater than 50 p.c of their three-point makes an attempt for simply the second time this season.
Enjoyable truth: Fran McCaffery busted each blood vessel in his face watching this sport.
3. Murray State
Murray State followers ready for his or her sport in Indianapolis on Thursday night time definitely seemed to be rooting awfully arduous for Saint Peter’s. Nicely, they bought what they needed, and now they’ll be talked about in the identical breath as Florida and San Diego State, and the subject of the dialog gained’t be a very nice one — at the very least not for followers of the Gators, Aztecs, and now Racers.
Talking of …
1. Saint Peter’s
For simply the third time in March Insanity historical past, a 15-seed is crashing the Candy 16. With its 70-60 win over Murray State, Saint Peter’s joined the 2013 Florida Gulf Coast and 2021 Oral Roberts as the one little guys to attain the feat.
Two days after stunning Kentucky in time beyond regulation, the Peacocks took down one other single-digit seed from the Commonwealth as they ended Murray State’s 21-game successful streak.
To be sincere, just about from begin to end on Saturday, Saint Peter’s regarded just like the group that had the prolonged successful streak and nationwide rating subsequent to its identify. The Peacocks bought a double-double from senior huge man KC Ndefo and 13 factors off the bench from budding worldwide intercourse image Doug Edert to manage a sport the place they by no means trailed.
Saint Peter’s is the primary group from New Jersey to succeed in the Candy 16 since Seton Corridor made it to the second weekend again in 2000. The purpose guard on that group? Present Peacocks head coach Shaheen Holloway.
They’ll now face both Texas or Purdue to try to go the place no 15-seed has ever been earlier than: A regional remaining.
2. Juwan Howard’s empathy
As Tennessee and Michigan shook palms following the Wolverines’ 76-68 victory, it was very obvious that the Volunteers’ Kennedy Chandler was having a tough time coming to phrases along with his group’s upset loss. The star freshman did all he may to get UT into the Candy 16, scoring 19 factors and meting out 9 assists.
Michigan head coach Juwan Howard, who skilled his justifiable share of heartbreak within the NCAA match, made it a degree to console Chandler.
“Kennedy is a particular, particular participant, the most effective level guards in faculty basketball, for my part,” Howard mentioned of Chandler earlier than the sport. “The way in which he’s in a position to make rapid impression proper out of highschool into the school stage, that’s spectacular. He’s at all times referred to as a playmaker, a man that may get downhill and may make performs for others. However nobody talked about his taking pictures, and also you’ve simply seen how he’s labored on it and that’s one in all his strengths.
It’s not arduous to see why Howard’s gamers communicate so glowingly of him.
3. Drew Timme’s self-censoring … after which lack of self-censoring
Along with his group trailing by 10 and staring the tip of its season straight within the face, Gonzaga star Drew Timme reportedly lit into his teammates with a fiery halftime speech. No matter he mentioned labored, because the Zags roared again to take down Memphis, 82-78.
So what precisely did Timme say? Listening to him try to describe the speech with out with the ability to use the precise phrases that he mentioned was one in all Saturday’s best joys.
I consider the transcript of the primary a part of that assertion is: “I mentioned I don’t give … a flying F … what occurs on the finish of the sport whether or not we win or lose, we’re not going out as no … uh … delicate guys.”
It was an admirable effort. After all whenever you drop “shit” a number of occasions about 45 seconds later, it type of defeats the aim.
Super night time for March mustaches.
4. The standalone video games
I’ll by no means perceive the structure of the match’s first Saturday and Sunday. I imply I’m positive the reason is rooted in one thing associated to scores and cash, however it nonetheless defies primary logic from a fan perspective.
After being flooded with video games in any respect hours for the earlier 48 hours, we get simply two video games back-to-back for the primary 5 hours of the day. No video games happening on the similar time. Even the primary half of the third sport is alone on an island. After which BAM, we’ve bought six video games hurled at us in the course of the night session.
There’s no motive to have second spherical video games wrapping up after midnight on the East Coast. It’s a simple repair, and it blows my thoughts that it hasn’t occurred but.
BUT, the structure is much extra tolerable when the standalone video games are as entertaining as North Carolina-Baylor and Kansas-Creighton had been. Thanks to all 4 basketball packages. You’re all March heroes to me.
5. Eric Musselman
For the primary time because the Arkansas glory days of the mid-’90s, the Razorbacks are headed to back-to-back Candy 16s. This due to a gritty, if not aesthetically pleasing, 53-48 win over 12-seed New Mexico State.
That stat talked about initially additionally doesn’t account for the truth that from 1997 up till final yr, this system went to the second weekend of the match a grand whole of zero occasions.
Eric Musselman is now 5-1 within the NCAA Event at Arkansas.
From 1997-2020 Arkansas was 5-10.
— JC Hoops (@JCHoopsPod) March 20, 2022
He saved his shirt on for this one.
Unsure if the identical can be true if the Hogs take down No. 1 general seed Gonzaga Thursday night time.
Regardless of decrying their standing as a 3-seed, the general public made Tennessee one of many trendiest Closing 4 picks within the discipline of 68 firstly of this week. It wasn’t arduous to know why. The Volunteers had been coming off a particularly spectacular run to the SEC match title, and entered the Large Dance having gained seven straight and 12 of their final 13.
Towards Michigan, Tennessee seemed to be much less bodily, much less ready, and fewer keen to embrace the urgency of the second. The efficiency was an particularly robust search for head coach Rick Barnes, who, regardless of a ton of standard season success in Knoxville, has been ousted within the first weekend of the NCAA match in 9 of his final 10 appearances, and who has led a group to the Candy 16 only one time since 2008.
2. Leaky Black’s ill-advised move
There have been no fewer than 7,167 moments from North Carolina-Baylor that might have discovered their method on this listing. The Tar Heels blew a 25-point lead with simply 10 minutes to play, Baylor’s decision-making in time beyond regulation left a ton to be desired, and also you’ve possible heard all about the officiating. However the second that stood out to be got here within the waning moments of time beyond regulation, simply when it appeared like some type of order was lastly going to take maintain.
It appeared like, for the primary time in about two hours, that the motion in Fort Value had lastly eased to a pleasant, calm stall. North Carolina had stretched its result in six, and with lower than a minute to play, it appeared to go with out saying that the Tar Heels would use as a lot clock as potential and both pressure Baylor to foul or try to ship a knockout punch simply earlier than the shot clock horn echoed.
Leaky Black had a unique concept.
The reverse angle exhibits simply how shut this rocket got here to truly going over (or possibly breaking) the backboard.
Fortunately for UNC, this ill-advised determination didn’t permit Baylor to, for the seventy fifth time, get proper again into the sport when it appeared just like the Heels had victory well-in-hand.
3. The SEC
There was discuss by some going into this week that the SEC was so robust this season that it may wind up producing three Closing 4 groups. As a substitute, 2-seed Kentucky and 6-seeds Alabama and LSU had been all bounced after spherical one, and 3-seed Tennessee bit the mud on Saturday. Solely 4-seed Arkansas (which is thru to the Candy 16) and 2-seed Auburn (which faces 10-seed Miami within the second spherical on Sunday) are left standing.
So permit us to revisit a pre-tournament quote from Kentucky head coach John Calipari.
John Calipari per week in the past: “The way in which you decide a league is what’s their report within the NCAA match?
“If half your groups are three-quarters dropping the primary sport, it form of tells you that possibly you were not what everyone mentioned.”
Kentucky, Tenn, LSU, Bama all upset already.
— Jon Hale (@JonHale_CJ) March 19, 2022
4. Friar Dom and the Richmond Spider
Two of America’s creepiest mascots in the identical motherf—-ing place on the similar motherf—-ing time? We accomplished tousled now.
5. The late Pete Gillen
Oh no, Rex.
Pete Gillen, for these unaware, just isn’t solely alive and nicely, however he’s presently a university basketball analyst for CBS.
Hunter Dickinson, Michigan
Michigan’s man within the center is the largest motive the Wolverines are dancing to the Candy 16 for the fifth consecutive match. Dickinson dominated Tennessee to the tune of 27 factors and 11 rebounds. He knocked down eight of his 13 discipline aim makes an attempt general, together with 3-of-5 from past the arc.
Dickinson’s 48 factors by way of two rounds of the NCAA match are probably the most by a Michigan participant since present head coach Juwan Howard poured in 62 over the primary two video games of the 1994 Large Dance.
R.J. Davis, North Carolina
Brady Manek carried the Heels early, however after his ejection, it was Davis who carried Carolina throughout the end line. Regardless of enjoying with an injured thumb, Davis poured in 30 factors and dished out six assists. He turned simply the second participant in UNC historical past to attain at the very least 30 factors in an NCAA match sport towards a No. 1 seed.
Drew Timme, Gonzaga
Gonzaga’s star helped saved the day for the No. 1 general seed, scoring 21 of his game-high 25 factors within the second half of the group’s 82-78 win over Memphis. He added 14 rebounds and 4 assists for good measure.
Remy Martin, Kansas
There’s been discuss all season lengthy that the “Dangerous Remy Martin” may very well be what winds up ending Kansas’ season. Nicely, the “Good Remy Martin” is the largest motive the Jayhawks are nonetheless chasing the nationwide title. Martin was spectacular in KU’s win over Creighton, coming off the bench to attain 20 factors, seize seven rebounds, and dish out 4 assists.
Arthur Kaluma, Creighton
Kaluma did every thing he may to get the Bluejays previous Kansas, scoring 24 factors and grabbing 12 rebounds. The freshman ahead is without doubt one of the largest the explanation why the longer term appears so brilliant in Omaha.
1. Trae Hannibal, Murray State
As soon as once more, not a terrific crop of dunks from the Thursday/Saturday squads, however this from Hannibal was the very best of the slams.
2. Johnny McCants, New Mexico State
3. Arthur Kaluma, Creighton
Alex O’Connell and Kaluma mixed to do that like 13 occasions Saturday afternoon. Okay, possibly simply twice, however it felt like extra.
1. Dancin’ Peacocks
The kings of the state of Kentucky are dancing into the Candy 16.
2. Extasy and anger
One group from California had extra enjoyable than the opposite Saturday night time.
3. Lookin’ for a Spider
Jacob Gilyard and Justin Minaya: Two athletic younger males.
1. “I bought guys from New Jersey and New York Metropolis. You suppose we’re frightened of something? You suppose we’re anxious about guys making an attempt to muscle us and difficult us out? We do this. That’s who we’re.” —Saint Peter’s head coach Shaheen Holloway
2. “All yr we’ve simply been listening to various things about us, how we’re a delicate group, how we don’t wish to battle. Right now, I feel we actually confirmed that we will battle. To persevere in a second like that and simply come collectively, I’m simply so happy with everybody.” —North Carolina ahead Armando Bacot
3. “I can let you know from expertise whether or not you lose on the primary day, the second day, like we did in the present day, otherwise you lose within the semifinals, it’s the identical feeling. Folks can say no matter they wish to say about — you don’t each take getting right here as a right. I imply, it’s so arduous to get right here. So that you don’t take that as a right, however is it irritating? Yeah. I’ve been annoyed lots in my profession, however I’m additionally very grateful that I’ve been in a position to be right here.” —Tennessee head coach Rick Barnes
4. “I mentioned I don’t give … a flying F … what occurs on the finish of the sport whether or not we win or lose, we’re not going out as no … uh … delicate guys.” —Gonzaga’s Drew Timme paraphrasing what he mentioned to his teammates at halftime
5. “The Drew Timme impact got here into play.” —Memphis head coach Penny Hardaway on what modified from the primary half to the second in his group’s loss to Gonzaga
Final day of the primary weekend. Can’t maintain something again now.