Eight more spots in the Sweet Sixteen to be had and here is quick breakdown for each game.
West Region Third Round
No. 2 Seed Ohio State Buckeyes (27-7) vs. No. 10 Iowa State Cyclones (23-11)
Deshaun Thomas (19.0 ppg.), Sam Thompson (13.8 ppg.) and Aaron Craft (10.0 ppg.) all average in double figures during postseason competition this year. Thomas leads the way with 6.5 rebounds a game for the Buckeyes. Thompson scored a career-high 20 points to go with a career best 10 rebounds vs. Iona Friday. He has made 20-of-30 (.667) shots from the fi eld, 5-of-8 treys (.625) and 10-of-11 foul shots (.909). Ohio State is holding opponents under 40 percent shooting (82-213/.385) and to just 23 percent from 3-point range (18-79). Craft has handed out 25 assists to move to the No. 2 spot all-time in career assists at Ohio State (517). He also has 12 steals in the last four games. Shannon Scott has dished out 22 helpers to go with seven steals in postseason play. Evan Ravenel owns eight blocks.
This is Ohio State’s 25th appearances in the NCAA tournament. Overall, Ohio State has a 46-23 record all-time in NCAA tournament play. The Buckeyes have advanced to play in 10 Final Fours, have finished as the runner up four times (1939, 1961, 1962, 2007) and own one title (1960). Ohio State finished third four times (1944, 1945, 1946, 1968). The Buckeyes have played in three-consecutive NCAA “Sweet 16s,” a feat last accomplished at Ohio State from 1960-62. No remaining team in the 2013 NCAA Tournament has played in the last three “NCAA Sweet 16s.” The Buckeyes have made 13 “Sweet 16” appearances in NCAA Tournament play.
Iowa State defeated No. 23 Notre Dame, 76-58 on Friday in the second round. It’s the third-largest margin of victory for ISU in the NCAA Tournament.3. Iowa State is now 14-14 all-time in NCAA Tournament action, as the Cyclones improved to 3-0 vs. Big East teams in the NCAA Tournament.Iowa State is the nation’s leader in 3-pointers per game (9.8) and total 3-pointers made (334). ISU has made 10 or more 3-pointers in 19 games this year.6. ISU made nine treys in the Notre Dame win, breaking the Big 12 record for 3-pointers made in a season with 334. ISU’s 334 treys ranks 25th all-time in NCAA history.7. ISU has three players with 60 or more 3-pointers: Tyrus McGee (93), Chris Babb (64), Korie Lucious (63), one of only three schools nationally to do so (Texas Southern, Michigan).
East Region Third Round
No.9 TEMPLE OWLS (24-9) vs. No.1 INDIANA HOOSIERS (28-6)
Temple and Indiana have met nine times. Temple owns a 5‐4 lead in the series between the sixth (TU) and 10th (IU) winningest programs at the Division I level. The Owls have won the last three meetings against the Hoosiers. Temple and Indiana will meet for the second time in the NCAA Tournament. In 1994 after the #4 seed Owls defeated Drexel, they fell to #5 seed Indiana in the Round of 32, 67‐58 in Landover, Md. That game pitted a pair of Hall of Fame coaches in John Chaney and Bobby Knight. The Owls shut down Damon Brown (eight points) but IU received clutch three‐point shooting from Brian Evans (18 points) and Todd Leary (15) to beat the Owls. Eddie Jones had 24 points and seven boards, while Aaron McKie poured in 18 along with nine rebounds in his collegiate farewell. The Owls defeated Indiana the last time the teams met, which was back on Jan. 3, 2004 when it handed IU a 59‐50 loss in Bloomington.
Khalif Wyatt’s 31 points vs. (8) NC State was the most by a Temple player in the NCAA Tournament since Mark Macon scored as many in the 1991 Elite Eight against top seed UNC. The Owls are looking to become the fourth team and the third Philly school to knock off a #1 seed in Dayton at the NCAA Tournament.
The No. 1 seeded Hoosiers won their second round game of the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season and will face No. 9 seed Temple on Sunday. Temple leads the all-time series against the Hoosiers, 5-4, with the last meeting coming in 2003. The teams did play in the 1994 NCAA Tournament with IU winning, 67-58, in Landover, Md.
South Region Third Round
No. 8 North Carolina Tar Heels (25-10, 12-6 Acc) vs. No. 1 Kansas Jayhawks (30-5, 14-4 Big 12)
No. 1 seed Kansas will take on No. 8 seed North Carolina in the third round of the NCAA Tournament, Sunday, March 24, at 4:15 p.m. on CBS. Kansas defeated No. 16 seed Western Kentucky 64-57 on Friday to advance to the third round, while North Carolina defeated Villanova 78-71 to advance. In defeating Western Kentucky, Kansas won the school’s 2,100th game and became the first school in NCAA history to have won at least 30 game for the fourth straight season (note: Memphis won 30 for four straight seasons from 2006-09 but later vacated the 2008 season). Two of the most historic college basketball programs, Kansas and North Carolina rank second and third, respectively, in NCAA Division I all-time victories. Kansas is second with 2,100 all-time wins, while North Carolina is next with 2,090. Kentucky is first at 2,111.
Finally, these schools also have a rich history in NCAA Tournament games played in Kansas City as North Carolina defeated Kansas 54-53 in triple overtime to win the 1957 NCAA title in historic Municipal Auditorium, which is a few blocks away from the Sprint Center.
Kansas is in its 42nd NCAA Tournament appearance, as well as its 24th-consecutive trip to the tournament, the longest active streak in the nation. KU is a number one seed for the 11th time since seeding began in 1979. The Jayhawks were a one seed in 1986-92-95-97-98-2002-07-08-10-11 and this season, with the last five under head coach Bill Self.
The NCAA record book lists Sweet 16 appearances only since 1975 (when all teams have needed to win at least one game to reach the regional semis). Carolina has advanced to the Sweet 16 an NCAA-record 25 times since 1975. Kentucky is second with 23.
South Region Third Round
(3) Florida (27-7) vs. (11) Minnesota (21-12)
Erwin Center (16,292) – Austin, Texas
The Florida Gators won their Round of 64 game for the third straight year, defeating Northwestern State, 79-47, on Friday. Kenny Boynton scored his 2,000th career point in the Gators’ opening NCAA Tournament contest. UF is in its 13th NCAA Tournament under head coach Billy Donovan, who holds a 29-10 record in the event. His .744 winning percentage ranks third among active coaches. UF has reached at least the Elite Eight in four of the past seven seasons.
Florida holds an 0-1 record all-time vs. Minnesota, with the lone meeting coming at Minnesota in the 1993 NIT. The Gators are 8-8 against current Big Ten teams under head coach Billy Donovan, including 3-2 in NCAA Tournament action.
Minnesota posted a 74-66 ﬁrst-round NIT victory over UF at the Target Center on March 17, 1993. Stacey Poole led the Gators with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Andrew DeClercq chipped in 10 points and grabbed six boards. Voshon Leonard led four Golden Gophers in double ﬁgures with 15 points.
Minnesota is making its 12th overall NCAA Tournament appearance (1972, 1982, 1989, 1990, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2013), and its third trip under six-year head coach Tubby Smith. Minnesota’s appearances during the 1994, ’95, ’97 and ’99 tournaments have since been vacated. Officially, the Gophers are 8-8 in NCAA Tournament games and 13-11 with vacated games. Minnesota was awarded a No. 11 seed for the third time. The Gophers’ previous appearances as the 11th seed was during 1989, when they knocked off No. 6 seed Kansas State, 86-75, and No. 14 Siena (80-67) to reach the Sweet 16 before falling to second seeded Duke, 87-70. Minnesota lost to No. 6 Xavier 76-62 in the 2010 Tournament.
South Region Third Round
No. 15 FGCU (25-10) vs. No. 7 San Diego State (23-10)
Wells Fargo Center (20,318) Philadelphia, Pa.
FGCU will look to become the first No. 15 seed in NCAA Tournament history to advance to the Sweet Sixteen on Sunday night when it takes on No. 7 seed San Diego State in a third round South Region showdown in Philadelphia at the Wells Fargo Center at 7:10 p.m. on TBS. Behind a 21-2 run in the second half, the Eagles became just the seventh No. 15 seed (7-109) to win a game in the NCAA Tournament with their 78-68 triumph over No. 2 seed Georgetown. FGCU has won 13 of its last 15 games and its six-game win streak is tied for sixth-best in the nation.
The Aztecs have faced a 15 seed once before and that happened during their historic 34-3 season in 2011. That year, San Diego State defeated Northern Colorado, 68-50,in the second round in Tucson. The second-seeded Scarlet and Black went on to advance where this team is trying to go – the Sweet 16. The NCAA third-round game will mark the sixth straight game in which the Aztecs have been the higher-seeded team. In the five previous outings, SDSU has put together a 3-2 record, which is remarkable for a program that was 0-6 in Division I NCAA tournament games prior to the 2011 campaign.
West Region Third Round
No. 13 La Salle Explorers (23-9) vs. No. 12 Ole Miss Rebels (27-8)
Jerrell Wright made three free throws in the final 30 seconds to give 13th-seed La Salle the lead for good in a 63-61 victory over fourth-seeded #12/14 Kansas State on Friday at the Sprint Center. Wright had a career-high 21 points while Ramon Galloway added 19. The Explorers led 44-26 at halftime but Kansas State took the lead with 7:09 left. Sam Mills added 10 including staunch defense on Angel Rodriguez’s buzzer-beating attempt.
Ole Miss, winners of six straight, won the SEC Tournament by knocking off Florida in the league championship 66-63 and defeated 5th-seeded Wisconsin, 57-46, on Friday. Marshall Henderson leads the team in scoring at 20.0 ppg and has set a school record and tied an SEC record with 134 three’s this season. Murphy Holloway (14.5 ppg., 9.6 rpg.) was a teammate of La Salle’s Ramon Galloway at South Carolina in 2009-10.
Only seven La Salle teams have won more games than the 23 that this current Explorer edition has (1952-55, 1988-90). La Salle is 13-10 all-time in 12 NCAA Appearances and is looking for its third win in the tournament for the first time since reaching the NCAA finals in 1955. La Salle won the 1954 NCAA Championship at Kansas City’s Municipal Auditorium, beating Bradley, 92-76, behind Most Outstanding Player Tom Gola. The Explorers are now 3-1 all-time in Kansas City with two wins in 1954 and a loss in 2009-10 at the Sprint Center to #1 Kansas.
Ole Miss has advanced to the NCAA Round of 32 for the first time since 2001 and just the third time in school history. The Rebels are seeking just the second trip to the Sweet Sixteen in school history. The Rebels are making their seventh NCAA Tournament appearance in school history and the first since 2002. Ole Miss has tied the 2000-01 squad’s school record with 27 victories this season. With the victory over Auburn, head coach Andy Kennedy passed B.L. Graham for the most wins in Ole Miss history. Kennedy’s record at Ole Miss is 152-86 in seven seasons, while Graham posted a 144-168 mark over 13 seasons as head coach.
East Region Third Round
No. 7 Illinois (23-12) vs. No. 2 Miami (28-6)
Austin, Texas Erwin Center (16,292)
Illinois is making its 30th all-time appearance in the NCAA Tournament, which is the second-highest number of Tournament appearances among Big Ten schools, trailing only Indiana (37). Illinois ranks 13th (tied) among NCAA schools for most all-time Tournament appearances. This is Illinois’ 11th NCAA Tournament appearance in the last 14 years, and 25th in the last 33 years.
The Illini won despite making just three baskets in the second half (3-22 FG), with all three buckets coming in a span of 2:27. Illinois missed its first 14 shots after intermission before getting a layup from Tracy Abrams at the 8:33 mark, and then back-to-back 3-pointers from D.J. Richardson and Brandon Paul at 6:30 and 6:06, respectively, to take a 48-44 lead with 6:06 left. The Illini scored their final nine points of the game from the free throw line, hitting 9-of-14 over the final 5:18.
With the 78-49 win over Pacific, Miami recorded its first NCAA tournament victory since a 78-64 win over Saint Mary’s in the 2008 NCAA tournament. The Canes advance to the Round of 32 for the fourth time in the NCAA tournament modern era (1999, 2000, 2008, 2013). UM improved to 5-6 all-time in seven NCAA tournament appearances. Miami is now 2-0 against the No. 15 seed with wins over Lafayette (1999) and Pacific (2013).
Midwest Region Third Round
No. 2 Duke (28-5) vs. No. 7 Creighton (28-7)
Philadelphia, Pa. • Wells Fargo Center (20,328)
Duke defeated No. 15 seed Albany 73-61 in the NCAA second round to advance to the third-round matchup against No. 7 seed Creighton.
The Blue Devils are 7-1 on neutral courts this season. Duke has defeated No. 3 Kentucky, No. 2 Louisville, Minnesota, VCU and Davidson on neutral courts this season. Duke’s lone neutral site loss this season came against Maryland in the ACC Tournament.
Ranked No. 2 nationally in points per game, Creighton’s Doug McDermott will be the ﬁfth player in the NCAA top 25 in scoring that Duke has faced this season. Duke has also faced Virginia Tech’s Erick Green twice (No. 1), Temple’s Khaliff Wyatt (No. 14), Delaware’s Devon Saddler (No. 17) and Ohio State’s DeShaun Thomas (No. 22). Duke won all ﬁve of those games and held all but Saddler under their season scoring average.