Kansas State, Baylor, and Creighton are among the teams that could cause upsets as they face off against their more highly ranked opponents in the NCAA tournament. Xavier’s win over Kennesaw State was impressive, while Gonzaga will have a chance to take on TCU after pulling away from Grand Canyon. Meanwhile, Duke’s victory over Oral Roberts was more straightforward, as was Marquette’s over Vermont. In the second round, top-seeded Texas will face 10th-seeded Penn State, while UConn will be aiming to build on a strong performance against Iona. UCLA will be looking to overcome Northwestern, while Alabama will have a challenge from Maryland, which prefers a slower-paced game. Finally, Houston is hoping to continue its impressive run despite concerns about the health of guard Marcus Sasser, who left their opening win with an injury.
The 2023 NCAA men’s tournament is moving to the second round after two days of thrilling finishes and a few upsets. The remaining 32 teams have a chance at the championship, with some considered favorites and others, such as Fairleigh Dickinson and Princeton, unlikely stories. Regardless, they are still in the competition.
The first round saw some remarkable moments, such as Fairleigh Dickinson defeating No. 1-seeded Purdue and Furman overcoming a 12-point deficit to beat fourth-seeded Virginia. Princeton is also among the best opening-round stories after upsetting second-seeded Arizona. On the other hand, Auburn survived a close game against Iowa despite struggling with their offense, and Florida Atlantic remains a strong contender with a record of 32-3.
Moving forward, San Diego State’s sixth-ranked perimeter defense will challenge Furman, while Houston’s defense will pose a threat to Auburn’s offense. Despite the obstacles, every team still has a chance to compete for the national title. Fans can watch every game through the Final Four on March Madness Live.
The 2023 NCAA Men’s Tournament has moved to the second round after two days of wild finishes and upsets. The remaining teams have a chance at the championship, and some teams are favorites while others are unlikely stories. In the first round, Fairleigh Dickinson upset No. 1-seeded Purdue, while Furman, Princeton, and Auburn also had remarkable moments.
Pittsburgh, a relentless team with players who can make bad shots, will challenge Xavier in the second round. Maryland held their breath as West Virginia missed a potential winning shot, and they will need to rebound well against Alabama to secure a second-round upset. Missouri’s efficient three-point shooting helped them beat Utah State, but they will need to continue that against Princeton, who boasts the 15th-best rebounding rate in the nation.
Michigan State’s defense against USC could eliminate second-seeded Marquette if they can bring the same level of defense in the second round. Northwestern’s tenacious defense frustrated Boise State, and they will aim to do the same against UCLA’s offense, which is ranked first on KenPom’s top-rated defense. TCU shot poorly in the first round, but they will face third-seeded Gonzaga in the second round.
FAU’s thrilling one-point win over Memphis, with Nicholas Boyd making a last-second shot, sets them up for a potential Sweet 16 spot. In the second round, they will face Oral Roberts, who made it to the Sweet 16 in 2022. The remaining teams will fight for the chance to make it to the Final Four and become the NCAA Men’s Basketball Champion. Fans can catch all the games through the Final Four on March Madness Live.
Penn State’s late-season rise continues, with Andrew Funk’s eight threes leading them to a comfortable win over Texas A&M. In the second round, they face second-seeded Texas, who presents a major test for their defense.
Tennessee held off Louisiana after nearly squandering an 18-point lead, and Arkansas is always competitive despite struggling to score efficiently. Miami’s superb defensive day secured them a victory over Drake, and Saint Mary’s and UConn both have top-six rebounding rates, making Sunday’s game critical.
San Diego State limited the College of Charleston to a 31.2 percent clip, but they cannot let Furman dictate the pace of the game in the second round. Kentucky’s ugly offensive game finished with Oscar Tshiebwe’s 25 rebounds leading them to a win over Providence. In the second round, they face third-seeded Kansas State.
Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis is a star player, and Norchad Omier’s return is critical for Miami’s clash against him. Fans can catch all the games through the Final Four on March Madness Live.
NCAA Tournament Round 2 Preview: Seeds 6-13
The second round of the NCAA Tournament is underway, with seeds 6-13 set to face off. Here’s a preview of the upcoming matchups.
13. Kansas State Wildcats (24-9)
Kansas State defeated Montana State in the opening round, but it was far from a comfortable win. The Wildcats will face a solid Kentucky squad that relies heavily on star guard Oscar Tshiebwe. If Kansas State can limit Tshiebwe’s impact, they may have a chance at an upset.
12. Baylor Bears (23-10)
Baylor’s backcourt, led by Adam Flagler, shone in their first-round win over UC Santa Barbara. However, the Bears struggle to defend the rim, which could be an issue against 7-footer Ryan Kalkbrenner and the Creighton Bluejays.
11. Creighton Bluejays (22-12)
Creighton’s Kalkbrenner had a dominant performance against North Carolina State, but the rest of the team struggled from beyond the arc. However, the Bluejays have had 15 games this season with 10 or more triples. Their shooting could be the key to success against Baylor.
10. Xavier Musketeers (26-9)
Xavier overcame a 13-point second-half deficit to beat Kennesaw State in their first-round matchup. The Musketeers will face a tough challenge in the form of the relentless and annoyingly persistent Pittsburgh Panthers, who are loaded with players who can shoot from anywhere.
9. Gonzaga Bulldogs (29-5)
Gonzaga had a slow start against Grand Canyon, but they eventually pulled away to win. Julian Strawther and Drew Timme were key players in that game and will be important again as the Bulldogs face the TCU Horned Frogs.
8. Duke Blue Devils (27-8)
Duke had no trouble dispatching the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles in the first round. The Blue Devils now face a short-handed Tennessee squad that is missing key guard Zakai Zeigler. As long as Duke can maintain their strong defense, they should be the clear favorite in this matchup.
7. Marquette Golden Eagles (29-6)
Marquette’s efficient offense led them to a comfortable win over Vermont in the opening round. Kam Jones was the leading scorer with 19 points. They will face a tough test against Michigan State, who held USC without a fast-break point in their opening game.
6. Texas Longhorns (27-8)
The second-seeded Longhorns face a tough test against the fourth-seeded Indiana Hoosiers. Trayce Jackson-Davis and Race Thompson combined for 44 points in the Hoosiers’ win over Kent State, and they will be a tough matchup for Texas’ defense. However, the Longhorns are solidly on upset watch in this interesting matchup.
These matchups promise to be exciting, with plenty of close games and upsets possible. Stay tuned to see who will advance to the Sweet 16.
NCAA Tournament 2023: Round 2 Preview
Texas Longhorns (27-8)
Texas had a great start to the tournament by shutting down Colgate’s nation-leading three-point rate. The Longhorns held the Raiders to just 3-of-15 from beyond the arc while making 13 three-pointers themselves. Texas needs to repeat their defensive performance against Penn State if they want to advance to the Sweet 16.
Connecticut Huskies (26-8)
UConn started the tournament strong with Adama Sanogo’s 28-point, 13-rebound performance leading them to an 87-63 victory over Iona. Connecticut is known for their ball movement with the ninth-best assist rate in the country. However, they will face a challenge against Saint Mary’s, who have the third-lowest rate defensively.
UCLA Bruins (30-5)
UCLA dominated their first-round game, winning by 33 points against UNC Asheville. Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Amari Bailey both scored 17 points while Tyger Campbell added seven points and 10 assists. The Bruins attempt the ninth-most two-point jumpers in the country, while Northwestern ranks 26th in defending those shots. UCLA’s defense should be able to handle Northwestern’s inefficient offense.
Alabama Crimson Tide (30-5)
Alabama had an easy win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, with the lead never dropping below 13 points in the second half. The Crimson Tide will face a tough matchup against Maryland, who prefer a slow-paced game. However, Alabama’s fast-paced game and ability to grab offensive rebounds should give them the edge.
Kansas Jayhawks (28-7)
Kansas had a dominant win over Howard, winning by 28 points with all five starters hitting double figures. Gradey Dick had an impressive game with 19 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, and three steals. The Jayhawks will face a tough test against USC, who have a balanced offense and are capable of causing an upset.
Before the NCAA tournament began, Arkansas was predicted to be a tough matchup for the top-seeded Kansas Jayhawks in the second round. Although Kansas is still expected to win, it is anticipated that the game will be ugly. The Jayhawks will need a strong performance from Dajuan Harris Jr., whose production declines in KU losses. Arkansas’ backcourt will present a tough matchup for Harris Jr. and the Jayhawks. There are also concerns about head coach Bill Self’s health, and whether he will return for the game.
Meanwhile, the Houston Cougars had an unimpressive start to the tournament, struggling to put away 16th-seeded Northern Kentucky in the closing minutes. Although Houston gave up 18 offensive rebounds, Northern Kentucky’s poor 5-of-33 shooting from beyond the arc saved Houston. Houston’s star guard Marcus Sasser aggravated a groin injury during the game and is questionable for the next round. However, even if Sasser doesn’t play, Houston has enough talent to handle Auburn. The key for Houston will be to defend the perimeter, as Auburn has improved its three-point shooting in recent games.
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