March Madness is set to tip-off this week with the brackets for the 68-team NCAA Men’s tournament announced last night with both Michigan State and Michigan beginning play on Thursday close to home at the Palace of Auburn Hills. Michigan State earned a third seed in the Midwest Region and will take on #14 Valparaiso in the first game at the Palace at 12:15 p.m.
Michigan is a number-4 seed in the South Region with the Wolverines facing South Dakota State at 7:15 Thursday night. Louisville, in Midwest, is the top overall number-one seed. The other number-one’s are Indiana in the East, Kansas in the South, and Gonzaga in the West. It all leads to the Final Four in Atlanta with the championship game on Monday, April 8th.
The tournament starts with the so-called “First Four”, a quartet of first round games with a pair of contests tomorrow night and Wednesday night. Yesterday in Chicago in the Big Ten title game, Ohio State beat Wisconsin 50-to-43.
Western Michigan is one of 16 schools that received bids to the College Basketball Invitational and will host North Dakota State in a first round game on Wednesday.