The NCAA Tournament begins on Tuesday, March 14th with the First Four, and then moves on to the First Round on Thursday, March 16 and Friday, March 17. The No. 2 seed Texas Longhorns will take on the No. 15 seed Colgate Raiders.
Here’s an early look at what we can expect from the matchup.
Game date: Thursday, March 16
Game time: 7:15 p.m. ET
TV channel: TBS
Location: Des Moines, IA
Odds: Texas -15
No. 2 Texas
What a difference a win can make. Prior to Texas’ regular season-finale against No. 3 Kansas, the Longhorns dropped back-to-back tilts to Baylor and TCU, respectively. But instead of phoning it in, the Longhorns recorded one of the wins of the year over the Jayhawks in the form of a dominant 75-59 that showcased Texas’ high potential.
The Longhorns’ win was led by National Sixth Man of the Year Sir’Jabari Rice, who poured in 23 points. Despite coming off the bench in most of the Longhorns’ games, Rice averages 12.6 points per game – the second-highest total on the team behind Marcus Carr (16.2). While Carr and Rice can both get to the rim at a high rate, they’re also both shooting better than 35% from three – something that will become even more vital come tournament time.
No. 15 Colgate
The Colgate Raiders earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament after knocking off the Lafayette Leopards in the Patriot League title. Colgate will head to their fourth consecutive March Madness thanks to a nine-game winning streak, and 20 wins in their last 21 outings.
Colgate’s biggest strength comes on the offensive end, but the Raiders can be exposed defensively. Senior Tucker Richardson is the team leader in points (13.9), assists (5.8) and steals (2.1) per game, and the Raiders had five players score in double digits on a points-per-game basis. Colgate led the conference in scoring (78.6 ppg) and field goal percentage (51.4%).