The wait is over for Michigan State and Michigan, they’re off the bubble and in the 68-team NCAA Tournament field. Parings were announced last night, although MSU had to sweat it out, being the last of the 7 Big Ten teams named for the Big Dance and one of the final schools overall to have their ticket punched for March Madness, which tips off tomorrow night with first round action.
Michigan State is in the Southeast region and the tenth-seeded Spartans will play #7 seed UCLA Thursday night at 9:20 p.m. in Tampa, Florida.
Michigan earned a number-8 seed in the West region and the Wolverines will face number nine seed Tennessee Friday afternoon at 12:40 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Michigan’s third team in the Big Dance, Oakland University, will go up against Texas, also on Friday, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Ohio State, Kansas, Pittsburgh and Duke were given top seeds for the Tournament with the number-one overall seed going to Ohio State, which yesterday won the Big Ten Tournament with a 71-to-60 victory over Penn State.
The format of the tournament was modified for this year. The first round, referred to as the "First Four", starts tomorrow night with a matchup of number-16 seeds as UNC-Asheville battles Arkansas Little Rock prior to UAB playing Clemson for a number-12 seed in the East Region.
Wednesday features USC vs. VCU, with the winner facing the number-11 seed in the Southwest Region, and then Texas-San Antonio and Alabama State fight for the right to play Ohio State. All four games will be played at University of Dayton Arena.