The best to come in the NCAA Tournament

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"But Joel has been one of our leaders and not just by scoring or shooting 3-point shots, but the way he plays defense". Duke does have two recent NCAA Tournament trophies, in 2010 and 2015, but those teams were drastically different from one another.

TULSA, Okla. - Elijah Stewart hit a late 3-pointer for No. 11 seed Southern California as the Trojans upset sixth seeded SMU 66-65 Friday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

North Carolina. So good, even a loss to rival Duke in the ACC Tournament wasn't enough to knock them down from a No. 1 seed.

For the first time since Florida in 2007, the defending national champ enters the 68-team NCAA Tournament field with the No. 1 overall seed. Maybe if the Tar Heels had found a way into the tournament in 2010, they would have struggled to win a game.

Josh Hart appreciates the efforts of the Villanova band.

Duke freshman Jayson Tatum produced one of his best all-around performances of the year, notching 18 points, 12 rebounds, four steals and four blocked shots, and Jackson and Matt Jones each added 14 points.

And yes, North Carolina is (and Kansas was) regularly a heavy favorite - none of his teams have ever been worse than a No. 8 seed, which means the basketball committee at least expected all of them to win - but many of Williams' Hall-of-Fame peers have stumbled at least once (and often more) in that position.

Duke's talent, however, hasn't always translated to success this season.

MI nailed down a seven-seed as well as a Midwest site.

The Blue Devils are back, earning their first top-10 ranking in two years and winning 10 games on their march to the ACC championship game, where they lost to top-seeded Notre Dame.

Princeton doesn't leave its Ivy League reputation for academic behind just because the Tigers are in the NCAA Tournament. A sleeper team in this region could be the Rhode Island Rams.

The South Region is North Carolina's to lose.

Your Final Four teams consisted of No. 1 seeds Villanova and Gonzaga, along with No. 2 Louisville and No. 3 UCLA.

Dayton vs. Wichita State, South Region, Friday in Indianapolis.

"It will be awesome", Tar Heels swingman Theo Pinson said Thursday, before either team had even played a tournament game. After that, a potential matchup with Lonzo Ball and UCLA awaits, THEN possibly North Carolina and that's JUST to get to the Final Four. At this point, you're just going to get so much energy from the outside, from how big the games are-win or go home-from the media, the crowd.

It was just the second time Carolina and Duke squared off in NY, and only the fifth time the teams played outside the boundaries of North Carolina. Keep in mind that Bob Huggins is the only coach in the West region to have made a Final Four appearance before. I see the Blue Devils making a great run before falling to top-seeded Villanova in the Elite 8.

"We enjoyed the ride we had in the conference tournament and regular season", Varnado said. I just don't think the Cowboys have what it takes to thwart a MI team which has won 10 of its last 12 games and appears to really be rolling. It may seem like a tough matchup on paper, but UNC really thrives against teams that play a high tempo offense and try to run with them, which both the Bruins and Wildcats could do. Troy has covered the number in four straight games and is 9-2 against the spread in its last 11 games versus a team with a winning percentage above.600. The mid-season arrival of Allonzo Trier after suspension has catapulted Arizona to a level unmatched by most teams. Upsets have happened and will more than likely continue to happen this season.

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