Saint Mary's missed out despite winning 28 games, due in large part to the team's non-conference profile, and USC missed out despite finishing second in the Pac-12.
They are the games you'll remember the most. "J.P. (Macura) leaned back to me and said, 'Did he say we have a No. 1 seed?' It was a good feeling to be first in school history to be able to do so".
The other First Four matchup between at-large teams pits St. Bonaventure against UCLA, with the Bonnies' inclusion giving the Atlantic 10 three bids (Rhode Island and Davidson). The Southeastern Conference, which has made a concerted effort to transfer its success in football to the hardcourt, got 8 of its 14 teams into the field. This coming weekend practice is going to be great for us.
Buffalo (26-8) earned a trip to the NCAA tournament by defeating Toledo in the MAC tournament championship on Saturday. They also won 11 games in the Southern Conference during the 1951-52 season.
But a gauntlet of a quality teams could be waiting for them. The westernmost champ in the last 20 years was Kansas in 2008. The 2018 tournament will mark FSU's 16th appearance. Which this year, makes absolutely no sense. Nope. It's only happened once, in 2008. The 10th-seeded Bulldogs defeated Villanova this season and lost to the Boilermakers in December. Again, nope. That's only happened three times - 1980, 2006 and 2011. It's part of the reason why the path to the Final Four isn't easy. Is this the year that it finally happens? This is the highest-seeded team Painter has coached. Don't. Nobody likes that person.
POTENTIAL UPSETS: The West Region has three games that will be popular upset picks. Kentucky and Arizona are both in the top half of the Cavaliers' draw.
No. 9 seed N.C. State will play No. 8 seed Seton Hall for the opportunity to play the victor of Kansas vs. Kentucky and Arizona will have to work for their wins.
De Boer: It's a pity that Mourinho is Rashford's manager
Liverpool legends Jamie Carragher and Graeme Souness both picked up on Alexander-Arnold's mistakes during their analysis in TV coverage of the game.
If Wichita State beats the Thundering Herd, it'll move on to play the victor of West Virginia and Murray State Sunday, March 18.
"Murray State was the first team to secure its bid to the Big Dance by winning the Ohio Valley Tournament, and MI was the first team from a major conference to lock up a spot by defeating Purdue in the Big Ten Tournament Championship". Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Purdue will all be taking part in this year's tournament.
REGIONAL FINAL: Duke over Kansas.
Most Dangerous Double-Digit seed: San Diego State (11).
Prediction: North Carolina isn't the flashiest program in the field.
The Shockers fell short just short of their quest for an AAC championship, but their overall resume was strong enough to notch a top four seed.
That sentiment still holds true in some corners of the fan base, especially after the Big Ten tournament semifinal loss to MI. Get ready for ACC chest-thumping and talk of a North Carolina-Duke final. North Carolina will be a pretty tough out in this bracket; few teams are more experienced.