How to Watch
- Tipoff: 7:27 p.m. ET
- Location: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, California
- Television: tru TV / The game can also be streamed via the NCAA March Madness app or at NCAA.com
- Announcing crew: Spero Dedes (play-by-play), Steve Smith (analyst), Len Elmore analyst) and Ros Gold-Onwude (sideline reporter)
- Radio: 700 WLW
- Announcing crew: Dan Hoard (play-by-play) and Terry Nelson (analyst)
- Series history: There’s good news here. UC is 6-1 all-time against KSU. However, the two programs haven’t matched up since 1968 so I’m not sure that really matters much.
We’ve gone through one day of the NCAA Tournament, but for Cincinnati Bearcats fans, today is the day the Big Dance really starts, as the No. 6 seed Bearcats finally get to work against the No. 11 Kansas State Wildcats in the first round at the Golden 1 Center.
UC (29-5) is shooting for its 30th win of the season. If it gets there, it would mark the first time since 2002 it has reached such heights. That speaks to how talented this group is what with point guard leader Troy Caupain, scoring dynamo Jacob Evans, three and D specialist Kevin Johnson and front court pillars Gary Clark and Kyle Washington. And that’s just the starting five. A program that was ranked in the AP Top 25 pretty much all season (16 of 18 weeks to be precise), UC is also in good standing in KenPom’s rankings, especially on defense, ranking 10th in the country in adjusted defense.
KSU (21-13) already earned a win in this tournament, as the Wildcats captured a 95-88 win over the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in the First Four on Tuesday. Wesley Iwundu scored 24 points, dished out seven assists and grabbed six rebounds, while Kamau Stokes tallied 22 points to lead the way. Iwundu and Stokes have been the top two scorers for KSU all season, while the team ranks 28th according to KenPom.
Now we just have to wait for tonight. If you need more content to hold you over, we’ve got you covered.
Despite the similarities between these teams, there are some glaring weaknesses that Kansas State possesses that play right into UC’s hands. As long as the Bearcats take good shots and force turnovers like they are normally capable of, they should be able to best the Wildcats and move on. Cincinnati 70, Kansas State 63