Men's March Madness Day 1: How to watch, which teams to look out for and potential upsets

ByMatias Grez, CNNWire
Thursday, March 21, 2024
March Madness brackets are here. Here's how to pick your teams
March Madness brackets are here. Here's how to pick your teams.

One of the most eagerly anticipated periods of the US sporting calendar is upon us as the inevitable drama of March Madness gets underway on Thursday.

The single-elimination NCAA Division I men's basketball tournament features 64 teams vying to be crowned national champion across three action-packed weeks.

UCLA has the most NCAA championships in history with 11, followed by Kentucky on eight and North Carolina on six.

AP Photo/Kyusung Gong

How to watch

March Madness games can be watched live on CBS, TBS, TNT, truTV, Max, Paramount+ and the March Madness Live App.

The first game to tip-off will be when the No. 8 Mississippi State Bulldogs take on the No. 9 Michigan State Spartans at 12:15 p.m. ET on CBS.

Games to watch

Wagner (No. 16) vs. North Carolina (No. 1) - 2:45 p.m. ET on CBS

The North Carolina Tar Heels will be hoping to avoid becoming just the third No. 1 seed in NCAA history to lose to a No. 16 seed when it faces the Wagner Seahawks on Thursday.

It's unlikely many will be betting against the Tar Heels - who are a No. 1 seed for the fifth time in nine years - come tip off after an impressive 27-7 season.

However, the Wagner Seahawks will be hoping history repeats itself given it was fellow Northeast Conference No. 16 seed Fairleigh-Dickinson that emerged from the First Four last season to topple No. 1 seed Purdue.

Duquesne (No. 11) vs. BYU (No. 6) - 12:40 p.m. ET on truTV

In his final season as head coach of Duquesne University men's basketball, Keith Dambrot led the Dukes to their first March Madness appearance since 1977 after winning the Atlantic-10 Championship on Sunday.

Dambrot, who coached LeBron James in high school and has spent 22 years as a Division I head coach, said he decided this would be his final season after his wife became ill.

The BYU Cougars finished fifth in the Big 12 Conference with a 23-10 record and the team's offense, led by guard Jaxson Robinson, should be too much for Duquesne.

Long Beach State (No. 15) vs. Arizona (No. 2) - 2 p.m. ET on TBS

Arizona will be a team hoping that history certainly doesn't repeat itself after it was upset as the No. 2 seed by Princeton in the opening round of last season's tournament.

The Wildcats have enjoyed an impressive season again, finishing top of the Pac-12 standings with a 25-8 record.

Long Beach State, meanwhile, will be hoping to extend head coach Dan Monson's fairytale exit. Monson announced he would be leaving his role once the Big West tournament had concluded - only for the 49ers to go on and win it to earn a spot at March Madness.

Full Day 1 schedule

All times in Eastern

No. 9 Michigan State vs. No. 8 Mississippi State - 12:15 p.m.

No. 11 Duquesne vs. No. 6 BYU - 12:40 p.m.

No. 14 Akron vs. No. 3 Creighton - 1:30 p.m.

No. 15 Long Beach State vs. No. 2 Arizona - 2 p.m.

No. 16 Wagner vs. No. 1 North Carolina - 2:45 p.m.

No. 14 Morehead State vs. No. 3 Illinois - 3:10 p.m.

No. 11 Oregon vs. No. 6 South Carolina - 4 p.m.

No. 10 Nevada vs. No. 7 Dayton - 4:30 p.m.

No. 10 Colorado State vs. No. 7 Texas - 6:50 p.m.

No. 14 Oakland vs. No. 3 Kentucky - 7:10 p.m.

No. 12 McNeese vs. No. 5 Gonzaga - 7:25 p.m.

No. 15 South Dakota State vs. No. 2 Iowa State - 7:35 p.m.

No. 15 Saint Peter's vs. No. 2 Tennessee - 9:20 p.m.

No. 11 NC State vs. No. 6 Texas Tech - 9:40 p.m.

No. 13 Samford vs. No. 4 Kansas - 9:55 p.m.

No. 10 Drake vs. No. 7 Washington State - 10:05 p.m.

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