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Conference breakdown: How each league fared on Selection Sunday

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Maybe it’s not quite like its college football cousin when suddenly during bowl season fans adopt the entire conference their preferred team is in to root for, but college basketball supporters like to see their respective leagues fare well, too.

Here’s how each multi-bid conference fared on Selection Sunday:

9 – ACC

  • 1. Virginia
  • 2. Duke
  • 2. North Carolina
  • 5. Clemson
  • 9. Miami (Fla.)
  • 8. Virginia Tech
  • 9. Florida State
  • 9. NC State
  • 11. Syracuse

Note: The biggest surprise here – and probably in the whole field – is Syracuse. They were the last team to make the field and give the ACC the most bids in the country. It’s just a bit surprising that they made it in over conference-mate Notre Dame.

8 – SEC

  • 3. Tennessee
  • 4. Auburn
  • 5. Kentucky
  • 6. Florida
  • 7. Arkansas
  • 7. Texas A&M
  • 8. Missouri
  • 9. Alabama

Note: Lots to like here if you’re the SEC, which takes plenty of punishment each year for being Kentucky, Florida and everyone else. Even with those two programs not quite up to their normal standards for a regular season, Tennessee and Auburn boost the conference in a major way, and Alabama’s two wins in the league tournament kept the whole conference in single-digit seeds.

7 – Big 12

  • 1. Kansas
  • 3. Texas Tech
  • 5. West Virginia
  • 6. TCU
  • 8. Kansas State
  • 10. Oklahoma
  • 10. Texas

Note: The Big 12 got 70 percent of its membership into the tournament, but it’s hard to look at this as anything but a bit disappointing for the league. Mostly because it had lofty aspirations of getting eight and even nine teams into the Big Dance. In the end, Baylor and Oklahoma State didn’t make the cut. The league spent all year lauded as the country’s best conference by plenty of pundits as well as itself – it’ll be interesting to see how it stacks up in the single-elimination tournament.

6 – Big East

  • 1. Villanova
  • 1. Xavier
  • 8. Creighton
  • 8. Seton Hall
  • 10. Butler
  • 10. Providence

Note: Marquette failing to make the field leaves the Big East one mid away from the 70-percent threshold the Big 12 hit, but this is still a really nice showing for the conference, which is the only league to sport two No. 1 seeds.

4 – Big Ten

  • 2. Purdue
  • 3. Michigan State
  • 3. Michigan
  • 5. Ohio State

Note: The Big Ten spent this season tied with the Pac-12 as the most-maligned power conference, and its four bids reflect that. In some ways they’re the inverse of the Big 12 with Final Four favorites at the top and then not a lot anywhere else.

3 – American

  • 2. Cincinnati
  • 4. Wichita State
  • 6. Houston

Note: You can bet Wichita State is feeling pretty good about its move from the Missouri Valley to the AAC right now. The Shockers underwhelmed some during the regular season, but still got the best-seed ever by a Gregg Marshall team, save for the No. 1 seed the undefeated 2014 team received. The AAC might not have a ton of bids, but they’ve got teams capable of winning games.

3 – Atlantic 10

  • 7. Rhode Island
  • 11. St. Bonaventure (play-in game)
  • 12. Davidson

Note: This looked like a one-bid league until Davidson upset Rhode Island in the conference tournament title game. Luckily for Rams coach Dan Hurley’s holiday gatherings, it didn’t cost his brother an NCAA tournament spot.

3 – Pac-12

  • 4. Arizona
  • 11. UCLA (play-in game)
  • 11. Arizona State (play-in game)

Note: Arizona underachieved relative to its preseason expectations, Arizona State cratered after its undefeated start and UCLA did little to distinguish itself. Not exactly a banner year for the Pac-12, though given the Wildcats’ talent, maybe they’ll hoist an actual banner when the whole thing is said and done.

2 – Mountain West

  • 7. Nevada
  • 11. San Diego State

Note: The Aztecs officially were a bid thief with their league tournament victory. The Mountain West won’t be complaining with a twice-as-many-as-expected participant list.


Police: Thief steals electronics from UNC basketball program

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — Police say someone stole thousands of dollars in electronics from the University of North Carolina men’s basketball team locker room and office while they were away for the ACC tournament.

UNC-Chapel Hill campus police said on Twitter that the break-in happened at the Dean Smith Center on March 9, and they released images of a man they believe may have been involved.

A police report says the thief managed to get into the team locker room and basketball office without forced entry, according to The Herald-Sun.

The report says the thief stole a PlayStation 4, Xbox One and clothing worth $2,900 that belonged to the athletic department. Police say the thief also stole a laptop worth $1,200 and a financial document worth about $3,000 belonging to one of the players.

No upsets over here: No. 1 seed UConn women set scoring records in first round game

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The No. 1 overall seed on the men’s side of the NCAA tournament made history on Friday night.

They because the first No. 1 seed to lose to a No. 16 seed in the first round of the tournament, as Virginia lost to UMBC, if you were still unaware.

Over on the women’s side, the bracket is nowhere near as broken, because UConn’s women made history, too. They set NCAA tournament records for … well, almost everything it seems like.

The Huskies were up 55-19 at the end of the first quarter of their first round game against St. Francis (PA). Those 55 points are an NCAA tournament record. They held a 94-31 lead at the half, another NCAA tournament record, and held on to win 140-52.

The 140 points that Geno Auriemma’s team scored was an NCAA tournament record. The 88 points that they won by was one point short of an NCAA tournament record 89 points that was set by Baylor in a win over Texas Southern last season.

Oh, and the Huskies set the record for more assists in an NCAA tournament game — 38 — for good measure.

All in all, I think it’s safe to say that the fans in Storrs had a better weekend than the fans in Charlottesville. Hopefully, that will allow them to forget the fact that the men’s basketball program has become a laughing stock.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Maryland Governor calls UMBC upset, so does NBC Sports’ writer son

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Never before in the history of the NCAA tournament as a No. 16 seed upset a No. 1 seed.

That was until Friday night, when UMBC sent the No. 1 overall seed Virginia packing.

And if you thought no one had picked that upset, you were wrong.

Let’s start with the Maryland Governor, who was clearly a homer in picking UMBC to not only beat Virginia, but to win a national title:

Never say never, but … that’s never going to happen bud.

But how about this: My son, who is two years old and based his picks on his hard and fast rule of “all the doggies”, called this upset!

He also called Penn over Kansas, Fullerton over Purdue and Butler winning a national title, but whatever.

That bracket is actually pretty good!

VIDEO: Virginia’s Ty Jerome does not appreciate dumb question after UMBC loss

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You have to give Virginia some credit.

After losing to No. 16 seed UMBC in the first round of the NCAA tournament, the players on that roster faced the music. They went up to the dais and answered question from reporters on national television.

There is no way they enjoyed that.

And you can tell because Ty Jerome had absolutely no interest in answering dumb questions from reporters:

He was not amused.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Saturday’s betting lines, point spreads, over-unders

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Here is the full TV schedule, with spreads, over-unders and betting lines, for every game for the first four days of the NCAA tournament.

(Lines are updated for Saturday morning.)

Pittsburgh: Kevin Harlan, Reggie Miller, Dan Bonner and Dana Jacobson

  • 12:10 p.m.: No. 1 Villanova (-11.5) vs. No. 9 Alabama, CBS (149.5)
  • 2:40 p.m.: No. 2 Duke (-9.5) vs. No. 7 Rhode Island, CBS (149)

Boise: Brian Anderson, Chris Webber and Lisa Byington

  • 5:15 p.m.: No. 5 Kentucky (-5.5) vs. No. 13 Buffalo, CBS (155)
  • 7:45 p.m.: No. 4 Gonzaga (-4) vs. No. 5 Ohio State, CBS (141.5)

Dallas: Spero Dedes, Steve Smith, Len Elmore and Ros Gold-Onwude

  • 6:10 p.m.: No. 3 Tennessee (-5) vs. No. 11 Loyola (Chicago), TNT (131.5)
  • 8:40: No. 3 Texas Tech (-1.5) vs. No. 6 Florida, TNT (133.5)

Wichita: Brad Nessler, Steve Lavin and Evan Washburn

  • 7:10 p.m.: No. 1 Kansas (-4.5) vs. No. 8 Seton Hall, TBS (154.5)
  • 9:40 p.m.: No. 3 Michigan (-3) vs. No. 6 Houston, TBS (135)