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2021 NCAA Men’s Tournament Viewing Guide: Second Round Sunday

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For the first time, 15 of the 16 seeds will be represented in this round with 14 taking the court today alone.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Virginia Tech at Florida
Florida can advance to its second Sweet Sixteen under Mike White by ending Oral Roberts’s run tonight.
Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Chronological Schedule

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Tip Time (ET) Site Region Matchup Channel with March Madness Live Link
Tip Time (ET) Site Region Matchup Channel with March Madness Live Link
12:10 p.m. BL Fieldhouse Midwest 8. Loyola Chicago vs. 1. Illinois CBS
2:40 p.m. Hinkle South 9. Wisconsin vs. 1. Baylor CBS
5:15 p.m. BL Fieldhouse Midwest 11. Syracuse vs. 3. West Virginia CBS
6:10 p.m. Hinkle South 6. Texas Tech vs. 3. Arkansas TNT
7:10 p.m. Stadium (Unity) Midwest 10. Rutgers vs. 2. Houston TBS
7:45 p.m. IF Coliseum South 15. Oral Roberts vs. 7. Florida TruTV
8:45 p.m. BL Fieldhouse South 13. North Texas vs. 5. Villanova TNT
9:40 p.m. Hinkle Midwest 12. Oregon State vs. 4. Oklahoma State TBS

Historical matchup information is courtesy of College Basketball Reference’s Matchup Finder.

Midwest 8. Loyola Chicago Ramblers (25-4, 16-2 MVC Automatic) vs. 1. Illinois Fighting Illini (24-6, 16-4 Big Ten Automatic)

12:10 p.m. on CBS (March Madness Live game link) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse (Jim Nantz and Bill Raftery with Tracy Wolfson reporting)

One of the marquee ties of the second round features a pair of in-state rivals who last met in November 2011, a 67-49 Fighting Illini victory. The Midwest No. 1 seed has won three in a row in the series with the Ramblers last victorious in 1986—at home! While Loyola reached the Sweet Sixteen in its last NCAA appearance, when Porter Moser’s club won two more games, Illinois last reached the second weekend in 2005, which also ended in a Final Four trip.

South 9. Wisconsin Badgers (18-12, 10-10 Big Ten At-Large) vs.
1. Baylor Bears (23-2, 13-1 Big 12 At-Large)

2:45 p.m. on CBS (March Madness Live game link) at Hinkle Fieldhouse (Kevin Harlan and Dan Bonner with Dana Jacobson reporting)

Both the Bears and Badgers last reached a Sweet Sixteen in 2017—Wisconsin’s fourth straight regional trip and Baylor’s second in a four-year span. In fact, the teams first met in 2014’s regional semifinals, with Wisconsin, then under Bo Ryan, winning by 17 en route to the Final Four. Baylor would get a taste of revenge by grabbing a 70-65 victory in the semifinals of 2017’s Hall of Fame Classic in Kansas City.

Midwest 11. Syracuse Orange (17-9, 9-7 ACC At-Large) vs.
3. West Virginia Mountaineers (19-9, 11-6 Big 12 At-Large)

5:15 p.m. on CBS (March Madness Live game link) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse (Jim Nantz and Bill Raftery with Tracy Wolfson reporting)

The former Big East rivals meet today for the first time since the Mountaineers departed for the Big 12 in 2012. The Orange dominated the series back then, going 14-2 against WVU from 2000 to 2012. West Virginia has reached the second weekend in three of its last four NCAA appearances, while Syracuse did so in both 2016 and 2018 as a double-digit seed. In fact, Jim Boeheim’s Orange have now won eight of its 10 games as such a seed.

South 6. Texas Tech Red Raiders (18-10, 9-8 Big 12 At-Large) vs.
3. Arkansas Razorbacks (23-6, 13-4 SEC At-Large)

6:10 p.m. on TNT (March Madness Live game link) at Hinkle Fieldhouse (Kevin Harlan and Dan Bonner with Dana Jacobson reporting)

League reunions are a minor theme in the early-evening window, as a pair of former Southwest Conference members meet up at Hinkle. Unlike Syracuse and West Virginia, however, the Razorbacks and Red Raiders have met recently, with Arkansas winning in the 2016 Big 12/SEC Challenge and Texas Tech returning the favor in 2019. In fact, the pair have split their four contests since their first post-SWC meeting in 2005. However, the Hogs largely dominated during the pair’s time as conference rivals, with the exception of a span from 1985 to 1987, closing their SWC tenure by claiming seven of the eight games played between 1988 to 1991.

While Texas Tech is aiming for a third straight Sweet Sixteen, Arkansas last made it to the second weekend in 1996.

Midwest 10. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (16-11, 10-10 Big Ten At-Large) vs. 2. Houston Cougars (25-3, 14-3 American Automatic)

7:10 p.m. on TBS (March Madness Live game link) at Lucas Oil Stadium’s Unity Court (Spero Dedes and Brendan Haywood with Lauren Shehadi reporting)

You probably forgot that the Cougars and Scarlet Knights were conference rivals, albeit briefly, as Rutgers spent the 2013-14 season in the American, following the transformation of the original Big East into the AAC and the Knights’ departure for the Big Ten. The teams played a pair of home blowouts, with Houston winning by 22 at Hofheinz and Rutgers winning by 23 at the RAC.

The Cougars will advance to a second straight Sweet Sixteen with a victory (and it could have been three were it not for Michigan’s buzzer-beating win in 2018). As for the Scarlet Knights, they last reached the regional round as an Atlantic 10 member in 1979.

South 15. Oral Roberts Golden Eagles (17-10, 10-5 Summit Automatic) vs. 7. Florida Gators (15-9, 9-7 SEC At-Large)

7:45 p.m. on TruTV (March Madness Live game link) at Indiana Farmers Coliseum (Lisa Byington and Steve Smith with AJ Ross reporting)

Not surprisingly, this will be the first-ever meeting between the Golden Eagles and Gators. However, it’s not the first time Florida has played a 15 seed in the tournament’s later rounds. UF has four wins over 15s all-time, despite only earning a No. 2 seed twice. Billy Donovan’s 2012 team eliminated Norfolk State at this stage, while his 2013 squad knocked out FGCU in the Sweet Sixteen.

Florida last reached the second weekend in 2017, which was its first NCAA appearance under Mike White, while ORU did so in 1974, as host! The Golden Eagles defeated Louisville once in the Sweet Sixteen before losing to Kansas in OT one round later.

South 13. North Texas Mean Green (18-9, 9-5 C-USA Automatic)
vs. 5. Villanova Wildcats (17-6, 11-4 Big East At-Large)

8:45 p.m. on TNT (March Madness Live game link) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse (Jim Nantz and Bill Raftery with Tracy Wolfson reporting)

This is yet another first-time matchup. The Conference USA champs would love to move on to their first Sweet Sixteen in their fourth NCAA appearance, while the Wildcats can make it for the third time in the last five tournaments. Of course, Villanova happened to cut down the nets to end the season in both 2016 and 2018.

Midwest 12. Oregon State Beavers (18-12, 10-10 Pac-12 Automatic)
vs. 4. Oklahoma State Cowboys (21-8, 11-7 Big 12 At-Large)

9:40 p.m. on TBS (March Madness Live game link) at Hinkle Fieldhouse (Kevin Harlan and Dan Bonner with Dana Jacobson reporting)

The Cowboys and Beavers must have thought they’d seen enough of each other after playing pairs of back-to-back series in 1970 and 1971 because they didn’t meet again until being drawn together in the semifinals of 2014’s MGM Grand Main Event. Oklahoma State, then under Travis Ford, won that matchup and then another with in-state rival Tulsa to claim its only trophy of the season—one that ended with a loss to the Beavers’ archrivals from Eugene in the NCAAs.

While Oklahoma State has a rather lengthy Sweet Sixteen drought, extending back to 2005, Oregon State’s is far longer, as the Beavers reached the regional round in 1982.