Oh what could have been.
This past weekend saw a number of teams just miss out on monumental upsets as they pushed the top teams to the brink.
No. 9 UCF blew a late lead to No. 1 Duke on Sunday and No. 10 Iowa rallied from 25 points down to force overtime against No. 2 Tennessee before falling short. The list goes on with Murray State, Wofford, Buffalo, Liberty, New Mexico State and Belmont all looking to become this year’s Cinderella team.
With the Sweet 16 now set, only one double-digit seed is left: No. 12 Oregon. The Ducks aren’t your typical Cinderella team either considering they are a Power-5 team, won the Pac-12 tournament and were just in the Final Four two years ago.
Each of the top three seeds advanced, with two No. 4 seeds and a No. 5 joining them. The power conferences will be well represented in the Sweet 16 with the ACC leading the way with five teams: ACC (5), SEC (4), Big Ten (3), Big 12 (1) and Pac-12 (1).
Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski will coach in his 25th Sweet 16 game as the Blue Devils take on No. 4 Virginia Tech on Friday. For North Carolina head coach Roy Williams, the trip to the Sweet 16 is the 19th of his career and the 10th since he became the head coach of the Tar Heels.
Tennessee’s 83-77 overtime victory over Iowa also set a school record as the Volunteers recorded a program best 31 victories so far this season.
Virginia Tech is returning to the Sweet 16 for first time since 1967 after coming-from-behind to take down No. 12 Liberty. No. 1 Gonzaga continues to cement itself as one of the top programs in the country as the Zags are now making their fifth consecutive Sweet 16 appearance and among the favorites to reach the Final Four once again this year.
Sweet 16 Schedule
Anaheim, Calif. (West Region)
No. 1 Gonzaga vs. No. 4 Florida State, 7:09 p.m., CBS
No. 2 Michigan vs. No. 3 Texas Tech, 9:39 p.m., CBS
Louisville (South Region)
No. 2 Tennessee vs. No. 3 Purdue, 7:29 p.m., TBS
No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 12 Oregon, 9:59 p.m., TBS
Washington, D.C. (East Region)
No. 2 Michigan State vs. No. 3 LSU, 7:09 p.m., CBS
No. 1 Duke vs. No. 4 Virginia Tech, 9:39 p.m., CBS
Kansas City, Mo. (Midwest Region)
No. 1 North Carolina vs. No. 5 Auburn, 7:29 p.m., TBS
No. 2 Kentucky vs. No. 3 Houston, 9:59 p.m., TBS