Live updates: Instant state-of-NC analysis as NCAA Tournament brackets are unveiled

·9 min read
Selection Sunday is here, and we're clocking the matchups, sites, and more for North Carolina teams.
Selection Sunday is here, and we're clocking the matchups, sites, and more for North Carolina teams.

The tickets are punched and the dancing shoes are all shined up for many NCAA Tournament teams, but some await at-large berths and others are eager to see who and where they'll begin their march into Madness.

With Duke, UNC and Davidson set to represent North Carolina, Wake Forest is a popular pick as one of the first outs of the NCAA field. We'll see what happens when the men's basketball tournament bracket is unveiled at 6 p.m. on CBS.

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Women's Selection Sunday airs on ESPN at 8 p.m., and that's when NC State, UNC and Conference USA champion Charlotte will learn their regional destinations and opponents.

We'll be following the action with analysis, breakdowns and reaction as brackets are revealed.

8:15 p.m.: NC State a No. 1 seed in women's bracket

The three-time reigning ACC tournament champion Wolfpack will look to go to the Final Four for the first time since 1998.

Their reward for earning the No. 1 seed is the Bridgeport Region in Connecticut, where a matchup against No. 2-seeded UConn would give the Huskies a home game in the Elite Eight, if they make it that far.

And with Paige Bueckers back in the lineup, they probably will.

Notre Dame, which handed NC State its only ACC loss this season, is also in this region as a No. 5.

And the team that took out NC State in last year's Sweet 16, Indiana, is the No. 3 seed in the Bridgeport Region. The Hoosiers' first-round game is against CUSA champion and 14th-seeded Charlotte.

More: NC State women likely to have to face UConn in Bridgeport to reach Final Four

8:05 p.m.: Greensboro Region has top women's team, player & ACC flavor with UNC, Miami

No. 1 overall seed South Carolina draws the Greensboro Region, so women's basketball fans in North Carolina will have a chance to see the best in action.

UNC got a No. 5 seed and the Heels will open against No. 12 Stephen F. Austin in Tucson, Arizona, with the winner of No. 4 Arizona and No. 13 UNLV up next.

Miami, coming off a buzzer-beating upset of Louisville in the ACC Tournament in Greensboro, will have to beat the Gamecocks in Round 2 of the NCAAs to get back to the Gate City.

Maybe the most exciting player in women's college basketball, Caitlyn Clark and Iowa are the No. 3 seed for Greensboro.

A South Carolina vs. Iowa matchup would be a treat.

7:20 p.m.: Will UNC ever get Smart?

North Carolina drew Marquette in its opening game on Thursday in Fort Worth, Texas.

The Golden Eagles are now led by Shaka Smart, formerly the coach at VCU and Texas, so he'll be familiar with the Metroplex, having played conference games at nearby TCU.

The bigger problem for the Heels? They've never beaten Smart -- going 0-3 against him during his time with the Longhorns.

Texas won 84-82 in Austin on Dec. 12, 2015; 92-89 on Nov. 22, 2018 at Orleans Arena, and again last season, 69-67, on Dec. 2, 2020, in Asheville as part of the relocated Maui Invitational.

Staying in the East: UNC draws No. 8 seed, matchup with Marquette for NCAA Tournament opener

7:05 p.m.: Duke in Greenville didn't end well last time

Duke's regular-season title in the ACC, and early-season wins over Gonzaga and Kentucky, were enough to get them onto the No. 2 line in the West region and a short drive for the opening weekend of games.

But that doesn't mean it'll be a breeze into the Sweet 16.

With an expected win over Cal State Fullerton, the Blue Devils would play either Davidson or Michigan State. The Spartans had a strong outing in the Big Ten Tournament to rejuvenate their hopes of a postseason run. The Wildcats have come out of the No. 10 hole before to shock the world (Steph Curry, cough, cough).

The Blue Devils' last trip to Greenville also ended in disappointment. Duke was also a No. 2 seed when it came to town in 2017 and was sent back to Durham after South Carolina stunned them 88-81 in the second round behind a vocal Gamecocks crowd. If Davidson gets through, the crowd easily could root hard for the underdog.

More: Duke holds on to No. 2 seed in Coach K's final season

6:50 p.m.: Pick Your Upset

Looking for an early surprise? UAB might be the team for you.

The Blazers have a veteran coach in Andy Kennedy, and they are representing a league which has its share of tournament surprises in recent years as a low seed.

Starting in 2015, the Conference USA tournament champion has won its opening-round game five times in six tries: UAB (2015 as a 14), Middle Tennessee (as a 15 in 2016 and a 12 in 2017), Marshall (2018 as a 13) and North Texas (2021 as a 13).

The Blazers are seeded No. 12 in the South against No. 5 Houston, which played in last year's Final Four.

6:46 p.m.: Road trip?

The closest action to N.C. will come to Greenville, S.C., with the following games set for Bon Secours Wellness Arena:

  • No. 2 Auburn. vs. No. 15 Jacksonville State

  • No. 7 USC vs. No. 10 Miami

  • No. 7 Michigan State vs. No. 10 Davidson

  • No. 2 Duke vs. No. 15 Cal-State Fullerton

6:41 p.m.: So who's out of the bracket?

Among the teams that didn't get selected, Wake Forest from the ACC couldn't overcome its poor nonconference strength of schedule and heads to the NIT.

Dayton, Oklahoma, SMU and Texas A&M were the first four teams left out of the bracket, according to the committee.

6:33 p.m: UNC draws Marquette, potentially Baylor

UNC draws an East Region bracket with defending NCAA champion and top-seeded Baylor, and the Heels could meet the Bears in a second-round game in Fort Worth, Texas, as a No. 8 seed facing Shaka Smart's No. 9 Marquette in Round 1.

Virginia Tech gets a No. 11 seed coming off its ACC tournament championship and the Hokies will face No. 6 Texas in Milwaukee in the East region.

With a victory over Duke in Coach K's last game at Cameron on its resume, UNC landed a tough path in the NCAAs. But if the Heels play like they have recently, they can win a couple here.

6:25 p.m.: Miami is 3rd ACC team in Midwest Region

The Hurricanes grabbed the No. 10 seed in the Midwest and will play in Greenville, S.C., against Southern Cal. The winner of that game likely faces No. 2 Auburn.

Kansas is the top seed in the region, which plays its second-weekend games in Chicago.

6:15 p.m.: Arizona No. 1 in South with 'Nova, Tennessee

Arizona is the No. 1 seed in the South Region with Villanova No. 2 and SEC champion Tennessee is a tough No. 3.

Robeson County native Kelvin Sampson’s Houston Cougars are the No. 5 seed with a first-round matchup against high-scoring No. 12 UAB in Pittsburgh on Friday.

6:05 p.m.: Duke in West Bracket

The Duke Blue Devils had suddenly become a trendy pick to get shipped away from the Southeast for their opening games of the tournament after falling in the ACC Tournament final on Saturday night.But the committee kept them as close to home as possible, giving them the No. 2 seed in the West. They'll open against No. 15 Cal State Fullerton, which won the Big West Conference in Greenville, South Carolina.

If the Blue Devils win, Coach Mike Krzyzewski could face another longtime coach in his second game. No. 7 Michigan State, led by all-time Big Ten wins leader Tom Izzo, faces off against No. 10 Davidson, led by Bob McKillop.

No. 1 overall seed Gonzaga is the top seed in that region.

Notre Dame will also represent the ACC in the First Four against Rutgers with the winner facing No. 6 Alabama in this bracket.

Mike Krzyzewski missed out on a potential homecoming that a Midwest Region selection would have given him, as its Sweet 16 and Elite Eight games will be played in his hometown of Chicago.

Should Duke get past the first two rounds, its regional semifinal and final would be played in San Francisco.

5:30 p.m.: So who's definitely in?

The final two conference tournaments in the American and Big Ten are almost finished, and both teams in those finals are expected to be in the tournament.

To take a look back at the 30 other automatic bids, NCAA.com has been tracking all the conference tournaments.

From NCAA.com: Men's Automatic Bids list

5:15 p.m.: No. 1 seeds appear set

Duke falling to Virginia Tech in the ACC championship game and Kansas winning the Big 12 championship likely means the Jayhawks will join Gonzaga, Arizona and Baylor as a No. 1 seed.

That's exactly what the Bracket Matrix tells us, with Duke dropping to a No. 3 seed. Duke has never won a national championship as a No. 3 seed but did advance to the title game in 1990 before falling 103-73 to UNLV. The last time the Blue Devils were a No. 3 seed, they were upset 78-71 to No. 14 Mercer.

The Matrix predicts UNC as a No. 9 and Davidson as a No. 10, with Wake Forest still a potential at-large pick for the First Four.

More: Could Duke basketball drop to a No. 3 seed, out of Greenville after ACC Tournament loss?

This article originally appeared on The Fayetteville Observer: NCAA Brackets: Live updates on March Madness roads for Duke, UNC