The early evening games were mostly snorefests, as Louisville, Michigan and Arizona all won handily. Louisville got up early on North Carolina A&T and it was never in doubt. South Dakota State had an early lead on Michigan, but midway through the first half when Michigan was primed for a loss, the Jackrabbits couldn't jack a score. Glenn Robinson III and Tim Hardaway Jr each scored 21 points to lead the Wolverines. Just saw on the box score that South Dakota State played 6 players and four of those players played the full 40.
Belmont was a popular upset pick, but they were no match for Arizona, who were firing on all cylinders. The Wildcats pulled away during an 18-4 run that occurred between the end of the first half and the beginning of the second half; going up 18 in the process. The Bruins tried to come back, but Arizona kept them at arms distance throughout the rest of the game.
Drama was only alive in San Jose, where UNLV was facing 12-seeded Cal, in essentially a home game for the Golden Bears. Cal was led by Allen Crabbe and Justin Cobbs in the back and Robert Thurman who had dunk after dunk in the second half up front. Some poor free throw shooting (where have you heard this before?) made this a closer game for the Runnin' Rebels. Proved to be too little, too late and Cal became the second 12th seed to win today, both from the Pac-12, who are making the selection committee eat a lot of crow over their seeding.
One takeaway from UNLV-Cal though is there can't be another situation where the high seed has to play a rematch in their first game. Not to mention they have to play in the same area as the lower seed, making it a de facto road game. If the committee was going to make a rematch happen, they should have had UNLV play Oregon, where distance for both are considerable.
I'll have a final post on the late night games later on.