NCAA Men’s Tournament Just 6 Weeks Away

NCAA Men’s Tournament Just 6 Weeks Away

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Basketball fever has begun; March Madness will soon follow.

Forget March Madness — the post-season “fever” that effects college basketball faithful has already set in as teams wrap up the first half of their league schedules and begin their final 10 games before conference tournament play begins. Each team’s last 10 games including conference tournament games are given extra special weight by the NCAA selection committee. Finish strong and “bubble teams” can find a way into this field of 68. Fall down the stretch and the NIT may not even want you!

If you haven’t marked up your calendars yet, you’ll want to circle the following dates that run from the 68 participants being announced through the Final Four. Let’s take a lookout at what is coming down the pike beginning this March:

Selection Sunday, March 11, 2012 — You’ll want to tune in to the Selection Sunday show that airs 6 p.m. EST on this date. Besides the 30+ automatic bids, all of the remaining teams will be announced. Most of the fun is watching fan and team reaction as some teams make it and others are left out.

First Round, March 13-14, 2012 — Played at UD Arena in Dayton, Ohio, the eight bottom teams battle for the right to move forward and join the Field of 64.

Second and Third Rounds, March 15 and 17, 2012 — The field gets quickly narrowed to 16 teams following this weekend with games held at the following four locations: the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon; at The Pit in Albuquerque, N.M.; at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh; and at KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, KY.

On March 16 and 18, 2012 additional second and third round games will be held at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio; at Qwest Center Omaha in Nebraska; at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.; and at the Greensboro Coliseum in North Carolina.

Regional Championships — Four teams each play in the regional championships with the winner of each round sent on to the Final Four in New Orleans. East and Southwest Regionals will be held on

March 22 and 24, 2012, at two locations: TD Garden in Boston and US Airway Center in Phoenix.

The Midwest and Southeast Regionals will be held March 23 and 25, 2012, with games played at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.

Final Four — The Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans will host this year’s men’s Final Four which is made up of the national semifinals and the championship game. The semifinals will be played on March 31 and the championship game on April 2, 2012.

See Also College Rankings? Mostly Meaningless Right Now.

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