Home 9 MarchMadness2017home-en 9 The Tournament day by day

The Tournament day by day

Autore: Raffaele Fante
Data: 16 Mar, 2017


April 4th – The Final crowns North Carolina over Gonzaga (71-65) and the Tar Heels win their sixth Ncaa championship. It was a balanced game between two teams that proved to be equals, but it was a dogfight played at a sluggish pace with not much left for the show. Joel Berry led all scorers with 22 points  on 7-for-19 from the field and 4-for-8 from the free throw line and 6 assists, and earned Most Outstanding Player honors. Nigel Williams-Goss carried the Bulldogs (15 points for him) down the stretch, scoring the final three baskets for the team before suffering an ankle sprain that hobbled in the last two offensive possessions.

April 3rd – It will be a chance to make history for Mark Few, one to forget the “worst [career] loss” for Roy Williams. The game between Gonzaga and North Carolina that will be played tonight at the University of Phoenix Stadium in front of a sell-out crowd has no favorite. The Zags will try to win the first title in the history of the private Jesuit university of Spokane, the Tar Heels earned the right to avenge the last second loss they suffered last year against Villanova and win the National championship for the sixth time.

April 2nd – Gonzaga and North Carolina advance to the final after close games against South Carolina and Oregon, respectively. Zach Collins and Przemek Karnowski were crucial down the stretch to carry the Zags to a 77-73 win over the Gamecocks. PJ Dozier had a great game, but Sindarius Thornwell was a non-factor in the most important game of the season. In the second semifinal, Kennedy Meeks put together a 25-point, 14-rebound performance to carry the Tar Heels past the Ducks. Tyler Dorsey and Dillon Brooks struggled against UNC defense and were not as effective as usual.

April 1st – Today’s the day: the first semifinal of the Ncaa Tournament, Gonzaga vs South Carolina, will start in Glendale, at the University of Phoenix Stadium, at 6.10 pm. The flu is gone and Sindarius Thornwell is back on the floor. No problems for Gonzaga and coach Mark Few either. Joel Berry has been cleared to play in the second semifinal, North Carolina vs Oregon, starting at 8.50 pm. Yesterday, in the WNCAA semifinal, Mississippi State snapped the 111-win streak held by Uconn and coach Geno Auriemma with a huge shot at the buzzer at the end of the second overtime. The Bulldogs will now play South Carolina in the WNCAA final game, and SC might pull an incredible double-championship.

Your schedule for the night:

6.10 pm South Carolina vs Gonzaga

8.50 pm North Carolina vs Oregon


March 31st – Today, the four team will have their last 1-hour open practice at the University of Phoenix Stadium. Joel Berry is not fully recovered from that ankle injury but he is sure he will be able to play against Oregon. Sindarius Thornwell will play for South Carolina despite suffering flu-like symptoms the last few days. Gonzaga’s coach Mark Few won the AP Coach of the Year award, while Frank Mason (Kansas) won the AP Player of the Year. TCU is the new NIT champion after an 88-56 win over Georgia Tech in the final game. TJ Leaf (UCLA) and Lauri Markkanen (Arizona) declared for the draft.

March 30th – Everything’s ready to go for the Final Four: the last team to arrive in Arizona was Oregon, together with the 1939 trophy, the first ever and the only one won by the Ducks. The weather is hot in Glendale, where the 4 teams will play on Saturday at the University of Phoenix Stadium, in front of 70,000 people. In the last few days, more players are declaring for the draft. Melo Trimble will hire an agent and leave Maryland after three seasons. Edmond Sumner, who has been out with an injury since January, declared as well and will leave Xavier after two seasons.

March 29th – North Carolina is the first team in Glendale, since the Tar Heels landed in Arizona one day earlier than scheduled. Joel Berry is still resting and his ankle will be evaluated daily. While waiting for the Final Four, the draft is still the hot topic: Harry Giles and Dennis Smith will leave Duke and NC State and will go the one-and-done route. “I’m better than Markelle Fultz”, Lonzo Ball said. The two of them are in the conversation for the top pick in the draft next June.

March 28th – “I’m scared to death ‘cause I just don’t know”. Coach Roy Williams still doesn’t know if Joel Berry can play next Saturday against Oregon: the North Carolina PG injured his left ankle in the game against Kentucky, but he was already playing through an injury to his right ankle he suffered in the game against Texas Southern in the first round. Joel Berry is the leader and most important player of this Tar Heels team, and things would change dramatically without him. Gonzaga’s PG Nigel Williams-Goss is one of the 5 players short-listed for the Wooden Award, one of the two MVP trophies of the season together with the Naismith Trophy. The two shortlists are identical and include Williams-Goss, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Caleb Swanigan and Frank Mason.

March 27 – And then there were four. Some got there for the first time, like South Carolina, others will have their twentieth rodeo, like North Carolina. The 2017 March Madness Cinderella goes all the way with a 77-70 win over Florida and will play Gonzaga in the Final Four. Sindarius Thornwell went for 26 points and was crucial once again for the Gamecocks, but the Gators shot 0-for-14 from beyond the arc in the second half. The Tar Heels won 75-73 over Kentucky on a last second shot by Luke Maye. De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk played bad for the first 39 minutes, then scored on three three-pointers in the final 50 second to tie the game, but UNC advances on Maye’s buzer beater and will play Oregon next.

March 26th – The Tournament has the first two Final Four teams. Gonzaga dominated on both sides of the floor in an 83-59 over Xavier and reached the Final Four for the first time in history. It is a well deserved accomplishment for coach Mark Few and a program that stayed among the elites in the last few years. In the other game, Oregon physically overwhelmed Kansas, with the Jayhawks missing the Final Four once again: their last appearance came in 2012, despite having a competitive team every season. The Ducks had two huge performances from Tyler Dorsey (27 points, 6-of-10 3P) and Jordan Bell (8 blocks).

March 25th – Second half of the Sweet 16 and another exciting tournament night featuring last second shots and unexpected outcomes. De’Aaron Fox wins the point-guard duel with Lonzo Ball, scores 39 points and carries Kentucky to an 86-75 win over UCLA. It was an easy win for North Carolina (over Butler) as well, while Florida vs Wisconsin was the most entertaining game of the night, with an impossible three-pointer by Chris Chiozza in the final seconds of overtime sending the Gators to the Elite8. South Carolina destroyed Baylor in a 70-50 win and reached the Elite8 for the first time, carried by Sindarius Thornwell’s 24 points.

Your Elite8 schedule for the night:

18.10 Gonzaga-Xavier
20.50 Oregon-Kansas

March 24th – The first night of the Sweet 16 had all the magic of college basketball with three of the four games featuring potential buzzer beaters, all missed shots. The upset came courtesy of Xavier in a 73-71 win over #2 Arizona, while Michigan’s tournament comes to an end in a 69-68 loss to Oregon. Gonzaga survived 61-58 in one of the toughest game of the Bulldogs season against West Virginia, with the Mountaineers unable to score on three potential game tying shots in the final seconds. Kansas is the only team advancing with relative ease: Devonte’ Graham and Frank Mason carried the Jayhawks to a 98-66 win over Purdue. The four remaining games in the Sweet 16 will be played tonight, featuring #1 North Carolina and UCLA facing Kentucky.

Your schedule for the day.

19:10 Butler-North Carolina
19:30 South Carolina-Baylor
21:40 UCLA-Kentucky
22:00 Wisconsin-Florida

March 23rd – The wait is over. It’s time to go back to playing games. At approximately 7pm EST Kansas City will host the opening act of the Sweet 16, Michigan vs Oregon, in one of the most unpredictable match-ups in this round. Gonzaga, Kansas and Arizona will play later in the night as well. The Nba prospects who have knocked out of the tournament are starting to declare for the draft. The list so far includes Jason Tatum (Duke), Dwayne Bacon (FSU) and Ivan Rabb (Cal) who did not play in the tournament but made it official anyway. John Calipari, on the other hand, is going nowhere and extended his agreement with Kentucky until 2024.

Your schedule for the day.

19:10 Michigan-Oregon
19:40 West Virginia-Gonzaga
21:40 Purdue-Kansas
22:10 Xavier-Arizona


March 22nd – The Big Dance will be back tomorrow with the first 4 games of the Sweet 16. Bookmakers see Kansas as the title favorite, while betting on Xavier would pay a hundred times the wager. In the meantime, two players took different decisions about their future: Jawun Evans, Oklahoma State sophomore PG, will declare for the draft; while Texas A&M freshman Robert Williams will stay in college one more year to refine his craft. The Tournament was on hold, but the NIT is still underway: Georgia Tech and TCU are the first two semifinalist, the two remaining quarterfinals will be played today.

March 21st – The first weekend of the 2017 Ncaa tournament had the highest TV ratings in 24 years, but it’s time to move on to the Sweet16: the first game, Michigan vs Oregon, will be on Thursday at approximately 7pm EST; the last game, Wisconsin-Florida, will be on Friday at approximately 10pm EST. Out of the 18 million brackets filled on the ESPN website, only 18 guessed all of the 16 teams. A huge bracket buster was the Duke loss, since 7.3 million brackets had the Blue Devils reaching the Final Four. Among the teams left out of the tournament, Syracuse will have a much different look next season: after losing assistant coach Mike Hopkins, who will replace Lorenzo Romar on the the Washington Huskies bench, the Orange will have to deal with Tyler Lydon departure as well. The forward already stated he will hire an agent and declare for the draft. Will Wade will leave VCU and move to LSU. Everything is still quiet in Bloomington, with Indiana in search of a replacement for coach Tom Crean.

March 20th – Duke was the number one favorite to win the title in preseason, but the Blue Devils never lived up to expectations during the year. Allowing South Carolina to score 65 points in the second half in a second round loss is the final chapter to a disappointing season. Earlier in the day, German Moe Wagner scored 26 points to carry Michigan to the upset over Louisville. Kentucky survived Wichita State in a 65-62 nailbiter that went down to the wire and will now play UCLA in the Sweet16. North Carolina had its hands full in a win over Arkansas, while it was surprisingly easy for Kansas to take care of Michigan State. Oregon puts an end to Nicola Akele’s and Rhode Island’s tournament. UNC is the only ACC team (out of 9 teams invited) to survive the first weekend.

The 2017 NCAA tournament Sweet 16 (Thursday and Friday)

East Regional
(4) Florida vs. (8) Wisconsin
(3) Baylor vs. (7) South Carolina

Midwest Regional
(1) Kansas vs. (4) Purdue
(3) Oregon vs. (7) Michigan

South Regional
(1) North Carolina vs. (4) Butler
(2) Kentucky vs. (3) UCLA

West Regional
(1) Gonzaga vs. (4) West Virginia
(2) Arizona vs. (11) Xavier

March 19th – The first true upset of the tournament came with the Wisconsin win over Villanova: Bronson Koenig and Nigel Hayes came up big down the stretch to end Villanova’s dream to repeat. Gonzaga built a 22 point lead and it looked like the Bulldogs could stay in cruise control. Northwestern cut the deficit and made it a 5 point game but the Wildcats eventually lost 73-79. Xavier blew out Florida State, Florida won easily against Virginia, with the Cavaliers scoring only 39 points for the game, while Arizona and Butler advanced to the Sweet 16 with wins over Saint Mary’s and Middle Tennessee. Iowa State came back from a 19 point deficit against Purdue but Swanigan carried the Boilermakers to a win. Notre Dame lost to West Virginia. 8 more games today to complete the second round.

Your schedule for the day.

12.10 Louisville-Michigan
14.40 Kentucky-Wichita State
17.15 Kansas-Michigan State
18.10 North Carolina-Arkansas
19.10 Oregon-Rhode Island
19.45 Baylor-USC
20.40 Duke-South Carolina
21.40 UCLA-Cincinnati


March 18th – Everything went as expected for the top teams, with Kansas, North Carolina, Duke, Louisville and UCLA all collecting comfortable wins and advancing to the second round. Kentucky had a harder time than expected against Northern Kentucky, despite never being in any real danger to lose the game. Easy wins for Baylor and Oregon as well. Nikola Akele, the only Italian in the tournament, and Rhode Island advance after a Rams’ win over Creighton. Dayton is out after a loss against Wichita State, but the only surprise of the day came with SMU losing 65-66 to USC. Michigan State rolled to a 20-point win against Miami, while the Michigan 92-91 win over Oklahoma State was by far the most entertaining game of the night. The first eight games of the second round will be played today.

The schedule for today:

12.10 West Virginia- Notre Dame
14:45 Villanova – Wisconsin
17:15 Gonzaga-Northwestern
18.10 Florida State-Xavier
19.10 Butler-Middle Tennessee St.
19.45 Arizona-Saint Mary’s
20.45 Florida-Virginia
21.40 Purdue-Iowa State


March 17th – The first day of the 2017 March Madness was not that exciting, after all. In fact, the biggest news of the day was Indiana University firing coach Tom Crean. The top seeded teams (Villanova, Gonzaga, Arizona and Florida State) won easily their respective games. Relatively surprising outcomes came from lower seeded match-ups, with Middle Tennessee making it to the second round over Minnesota, after the huge upset over Michigan State last year. Xavier was too much to handle for a young Maryland team and the loss might be the end of Melo Trimble’s college career. Among top teams, Notre Dame and Virginia had a hard time against their respective opponents but still advanced, while Northwestern won its first tournament game ever over the Commodores, after Matthew Fisher Davis (Vanderbilt) fouled on purpose Bryant McIntosh, an 86% free throw shooter, with 14 seconds left and his team up 1.

12,15 Oklahoma State-Michigan
12,40 New Mexico State-Baylor
13,30 Seton Hall-Arkansas
14,00 Iona-Oregon
14,45 Jacksonville State-Louisville
15,10 USC-SMU
16,00 Texas Southern-North Carolina
16,30 Rhode Island-Creighton
18,50 UC Davis-Kansas
19,10 Wichita State-Dayton
19,20 Troy-Duke
19,27 Kansas State-Cincinnati
21,20 Michigan State-Miami
21,40 Northern Kentucky-Kentucky
21,50 Marquette-South Carolina
21,57 Kent State-UCLA

March 16th – All systems are a go: the first round of the Big Dance will start at 12.15pm ET with Notre Dame and Princeton playing for a spot in the second round. Later in the day, the defending champions Villanova will face Mount St Mary’s and Gonzaga will take on South Dakota St. As for the games that do not involve #1 seeds, Xavier vs Maryland, Virginia Tech vs Wisconsin and Virginia vs UNC Wilmington should be the most interesting. The bracket has been completed last night with the last two First Four: USC came back from a 17-point deficit to beat the Friars 75-71 and avenge the loss Providence handed them last year. In his first tournament appearance ever, UC Davis won 67-63 over North Carolina Central and will face Kansas in the first round. Have fun with college basketball, y’all.

March 14th – The moment we’ve been waiting for the whole year is finally here. The 2017 March Madness will start at 16.40pm ET: the first game of the First Four will see Mount St Mary’s take on New Orleans. The winner will move to the #16 seed in the East Regional and will be rewarded with a game against the defending champions Villanova. The second game of the night will have Kansas State face John Collins and Wake Forest. The winner will be the #11 seed and will play Cincinnati in the First Round.

March 15th – The first game in the 2017 March Madness had to go down to the wire. Mount St. Mary’s won a thriller against New Orleans (67-66 the final) thanks to 5-5 Justin Robinson 23 points. Mount St Mary’s will now play the defending champions Villanova in Buffalo, with no delays on the normal schedule since the airport is operating regularly once again after being hit by the storm Stella. In the second game in the First Four the Big 12 got the first round of a long fight with the ACC: Wesley Iwundu scored 25 points in a Kansas State win over Wake Forest (95-88 the final). The Wildcats get the #11 seed in the South and will play against Cincinnati in the first round. The two remaining First Four games (North Carolina Central vs UC Davis and Providence vs USC) will play tonight and the First Round will start tomorrow.

March 13th  – In a Selection Sunday devoid of major surprises, the Committee chose Villanova, Kansas, North Carolina and Gonzaga as the four #1 seed. The defending champions will have a tough road on their quest to repeat, with a chance to face Duke in the Elite 8. The Midwest will see the Jayhawks and plenty of games without clear favorites, while the West might be more straightforward with a potential Gonzaga vs Arizona  final, and Kentucky will have go through UCLA and the Tar Heels in the South. Syracuse and Cal were left out, Michigan State and Kansas State in.

Full match schedule (ET)

Thursday 16

12,15 Princeton-Notre Dame
12,40 UNC Wilmington-Virginia
1,30 Winthrop-Butler
2,00 South Dakota State-Gonzaga
2,45 Bucknell-West Virginia
3,10 East Tennessee State-Florida
4,00 Middle Tennessee-Minnesota
4,30 Vanderbilt-Northwestern
6,50 Xavier-Maryland
7,10 Mount St Mary’s-Villanova
7,20 VCU-Saint Mary’s
7,27 Vermont-Purdue
9,20 Florida Gulf Coast-Florida State
9,40 Virginia Tech-Wisconsin
9,50 North Dakota-Arizona
9,57 Nevada-Iowa State

Friday 17 

12,15 Oklahoma State-Michigan
12,40 New Mexico State-Baylor
1,30 Seton Hall-Arkansas
2,00 Iona-Oregon
2,45 Jacksonville State-Louisville
3,10 USC-SMU
4,00 Texas Southern-North Carolina
4,30 Rhode Island-Creighton
6,50 UC Davis-Kansas
7,10 Wichita State-Dayton
7,20 Troy-Duke
7,27 Kansas State-Cincinnati
9,20 Michigan State-Miami
9,40 Northern Kentucky-Kentucky
9,50 Marquette-South Carolina
9,57 Kent State-UCLA


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